News

COVID-19: Why saving our forests can help stop the next pandemic

Preventing the further destruction of Southeast Asia’s forests will be a critical step to stopping the spread of future deadly viruses similar to COVID-19, according to leading experts studying the risk factors that have contributed to the current global pandemic. Over the past four decades, swathes of ...

Jack Board

Weapons, Viruses, and the New Defense Reality in Southeast Asia

What happens when the greatest threat to national security comes from a virus? What does that mean for defense spending, modernization, and civil-military relations? In Southeast Asia — where militaries have long had an outsized role in politics, economics, and society — the answers to ...

ZACHARY ABUZA

Southeast Asia’s hydropower boom grinds to a halt as COVID-19 stalls projects

Incomplete and prospective hydropower dam projects in Southeast Asia, particularly along the Mekong River and its tributaries, are at risk of major delays and shutdowns as the COVID-19 pandemic impacts major industries, energy markets and worker safety. The government of Laos has already ordered a temporary ...

Jack Board

Coronavirus outbreak may spur Southeast Asian action on wildlife trafficking

Governments across Southeast Asia have vowed to strengthen cooperation in curbing the illegal wildlife trade, suspected to have sparked the novel coronavirus epidemic. The issue will be at the top of the agenda at the Biodiversity Conference in Kuala Lumpur later this month. “What needs to ...

Imelda Abano

SE Asia slowly but surely sinking into the sea

Ho Chi Minh City is constantly flooded, while Bangkok continues to sink below sea level. It sounds like a science fiction movie set in Southeast Asia. But it’s what experts predict will happen within the next two to three decades in the major Vietnamese and Thai ...

Dan Southerland

Southeast Asia’s Water Troubles Underscore Climate Threat

Over the previous 12 months, rising environmental threats in Asia have had a lot to do with water—most significantly rising seas pushed by international warming. Southeast Asia is proving to be notably weak. New research present that local weather change and rising sea ranges will threaten the ...

Miriam Jackson

Illegal hunting a greater threat to wildlife than forest degradation

The world has long associated plummeting populations of Southeast Asian wildlife with news of forest degradation and poignant images of deforested lands. Recent studies, however, bring to light another human practice that’s been driving the decline of wildlife numbers in these ecosystems. Researchers from the Leibniz ...

‘Death by plastic’ for animals must spur Southeast Asia to tackle waste crisis

The animal is dead. It can be a fish, bird, mammal or reptile. An autopsy is conducted and inevitably reams of plastic are discovered in its stomach. When I wake up every morning, I step into my bathroom and survey the shelves. There are rows of ...

Karim Raslan

Dams and Climate Change Kill the Mekong

The swirling currents of the once mighty Mekong, shrunk by drought and increasingly crippled by dams point towards an unprecedented crisis of water governance along the more than 4,900 kilometers of southeast Asia’s longest river. “This is the worst ecological disaster in history of the Mekong,” declared ...

Tom Fawthrop

Southeast Asia and the right to safe water

On 6 November, the Mekong River Commission acknowledged that climate change had exacerbated this year’s wildly varying water levels on the Mekong – which saw the mighty river reduced to a trickle in parts, even during the rainy season. But the main contributor, it said, ...

Sam Geall

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