Mekong Levels Reportedly Plummet Due to Chinese Dam Activity

Water levels on the Mekong River have fallen due to the filling of a Chinese dam on the upper reaches of the river in Yunnan province, according to locals and river monitors.

The fall was reported on January 4, when locals in the Thai port town of Chiang Saen, close to the Golden Triangle confluence with Laos and Myanmar, started sharing photos on social media showing a sudden and unexpected drop in the water level along the river.

The drop was quickly confirmed by the recently-launched Mekong Dam Monitor, which employs remote sensing and data from satellites to track water levels along mainland Southeast Asia’s great river.

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Sebastian Strangio