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  • Mekong Basin » Mekong River Commission
    the range of wetland habitats inundated The Mekong River Basin s biodiversity is immense even in comparison with other parts of tropical Asia Its biodiversity is fundamental to the viability of natural resource based rural livelihoods of a population of 60 million people living in the Lower Mekong Basin To learn more about the Mekong River Basin visit the sections listed below Physiography The Mekong River Basin consists of seven broad physiographic regions featuring diverse topography drainage patterns and geomorphology Learn about the form of the Mekong River channels and how they connect more Climate The Mekong River Basin ranges from the glaciated highlands of the Tibetan Plateau to the hot and humid lowlands of Southeast Asia and encompasses 16 distinct WWF Ecoregions more Hydrology The source of the Mekong s great productivity is its seasonal variation in water level resulting in rich and extensive wetlands The annual flood season is especially important in the Lower Mekong Basin where it has shaped the environment and life in the region more Natural Resources The Mekong River Basin contains a wealth of natural resources including one of the world s largest inland fisheries more Stories from the Mekong These regularly updated stories provide a voice to people in the Mekong Basin and can help to bring both contemporary and traditional issues to life more Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin Development Strategy and MRC Strategic Plan 2016 2020 set the stage for new sustainable development As the Mekong River Commission commemorates the signing of the 1995 Mekong Agreement on this day 21 years ago the MRC today launched the publications of a critical basin wide strategy and a strategic plan MRC to Review Viet Nam s

    Original URL path: http://mrcmekong.mrcdev.info/mekong-basin/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Physiography » Mekong River Commission
    drainage patterns and geomorphology The Tibetan Plateau Three Rivers Area and Lancang Basin form the Upper Mekong Basin The Northern Highlands Khorat Plateau Tonle Sap Basin and Mekong Delta make up the Lower Mekong Basin Learn more about the regions of the Mekong River Basin Major tributaries and distributaries of the Mekong River Basin In the Upper Mekong Basin in the Yunnan province of China the river tributaries are small As the river widens in the Northern Highlands large tributaries including the Nam Ta Nam Ou Nam Soung and Nam Khan enter on the Mekong River s left bank the Nam Mae Kok and Nam Mae Ing enter on the right bank Further downstream in the Khorat Plateau the mainstream is joined by the gently sloping Songkhram and Mun Rivers on the right bank and the steep Nam Ca Dinh Se Bang Fai and Se Bang Hiang Rivers on the left bank In the Tonle Sap Basin the Se Kong Se San and Sre Pok 3S Basin are the dominant tributaries entering on the left bank The Tonle Sap Lake which drains the Great Lake into the Mekong River during the dry season exhibits an unusual trait it reverses its flow during the wet season The Mekong Delta begins near Phnom Penh and ends up as a huge fertile flat plain in southern Viet Nam where the largest tributary the Bassac River branches away from the Mekong River The Mekong and Bassac Rivers split into a number of smaller distributaries forming an area known as the Nine Dragons Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin Development Strategy and MRC Strategic Plan 2016 2020 set the stage for new sustainable development As the Mekong River Commission

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  • Hydrology » Mekong River Commission
    contributes to over 24 of the total flow Table 1 Proportional contributions to total Mekong River mean annual flow by river reach distinguishing those made by the left and right bank tributary systems River Reach Left Bank Right Bank Total China 16 16 China Chiang Saen 1 3 4 Chiang Saen Luang Prabang 6 2 8 Luang Prabang Vientiane 1 2 3 Vientiane Nakhon Phanom 18 4 22 Nakhon Phanom Mukdahan 3 1 4 Mukdahan Pakse 4 6 10 Pakse Kratie 22 2 24 Tonle Sap 9 9 Total 55 20 100 Flooding The flood season in the Mekong River Basin lasts from June to November and accounts for 80 to 90 of the total annual flow MRC 2010 The annual flood season is especially important in the Lower Mekong Basin where it has shaped the environment and its inhabitants See the sections on the People and Flood and Drought for more information Many of the Mekong s key ecosystems have developed as a result of seasonal flow fluctuations The area s extensive wetland habitats would not exist without the annual flood Likewise the life cycles of many Mekong fish species depend on it Fish migrate to deep pools in the mainstream to seek refuge during the dry season later during the flood season they migrate back to spawning and nutrient rich feeding grounds on floodplains See the Fisheries section for more information Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin Development Strategy and MRC Strategic Plan 2016 2020 set the stage for new sustainable development As the Mekong River Commission commemorates the signing of the 1995 Mekong Agreement on this day 21 years ago the MRC today launched the publications of a critical basin wide

    Original URL path: http://mrcmekong.mrcdev.info/mekong-basin/hydrology/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Climate » Mekong River Commission
    LMB with the exception of two brief transition periods see Figure 1 below the rest of the year in the LMB is the dry season The wet season results from the flow of moisture laden air from the Indian Ocean in the summer During the rest of the year high pressure systems over the Asian continent give rise to the dry season in the LMB Figure 1 Lower Mekong Basin Seasonal Climate Source MRC 2010 The climate of the Lower Mekong Basin LMB which is almost always hot and often humid is classified as tropical monsoonal In the warmest months of March and April average temperature ranges from 30 C to 38 C Cooler temperatures prevail from November to February At higher elevations in the Lao People s Democratic Republic PDR winter temperature averages 15 C The distribution of mean annual rainfall over the Basin follows a distinct east to west gradient In the LMB the rain soaked uplands in the Lao PDR and Cambodia receive the most precipitation 3 000 mm and the semi arid Khorat Plateau in northeast Thailand the least 1 000 to 1 600 mm The Upper Mekong Basin is similar to the LMB in that rainfall is regulated by the global monsoon system In the Upper Basin annual rainfall can be as little as 600 mm in the Tibetan Plateau and as much as 1 700 mm in the mountains of Yunnan Climate change in the Mekong River Basin Lower Mekong Basin mean annual rainfall Source MRC 2010 Countries in the LMB are among the most vulnerable locations in the world with respect to climate change While the future impact of climate change is difficult to forecast projections for the Mekong River Basin for the next 20 to 30 years based on a downgraded global climate model are as follows Basin wide temperature increase of 0 79 C with greater increases in colder catchment areas in the north Annual precipitation increase of 200 mm a 13 5 rise Increase in dry season precipitation in northern catchments and decrease in southern catchments Total annual runoff increase of 21 Increase in flooding in all parts of the Basin with the greatest impact on downstream catchments of the Mekong River Climate change is expected to affect natural ecosystems and agriculture throughout the Mekong River Basin thereby exacerbating the challenges of meeting the increasing demand for resources from growing populations Hoanh et al 2003 Find out more on climate change in the Mekong River Basin References Hoanh C T Guttman H Droogers P and Aerts J 2003 Water climate food and environment in the Mekong Basin in South East Asia Institute for Environmental Studies Free University of Amsterdam Amsterdam Netherlands MRC 2010 State of the Basin Report 2010 Mekong River Commission MRC 2005 Overview of the Hydrology of the Mekong Basin Mekong River Commission Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin Development Strategy and

    Original URL path: http://mrcmekong.mrcdev.info/mekong-basin/climate/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Natural Resources » Mekong River Commission
    Basin contains many and varied wetlands that perform wide ranging functions and sustain key social economic and cultural values Wetlands also play a vital role in supporting the livelihoods of local people providing a productive environment for agriculture aquaculture capture fisheries non fish aquatic goods and tourism revenue In addition natural wetlands provide equally important indirect benefits such as flood mitigation water storage and wastewater treatment Mekong River Basin countries form a large section of the Indo Burma biodiversity hotspot A broad variety of ecosystems are present in the region including mixed wet evergreen dry evergreen deciduous and montane forests shrub lands and woodlands on karst limestone outcrops and mangroves Non timber forest products provide an important source of income for rural people and supply markets with a vast array of plant and animal products including foods medicines exudates and dyes Known mineral resources in the Basin include gold copper lead zinc phosphate potash oil and gas coal and gemstone principally corundum including rubies and sapphires The mineral potential of the Basin remains largely unexploited Wetlands Extent of wetlands in the Lower Mekong Basin Source MRC 2010 The Basin s numerous and varied wetlands support essential social economic and cultural values The wetlands provide productive environments for rice cultivation freshwater capture fisheries other forms of agriculture and aquaculture and tourism Natural wetlands also provide equally important indirect benefits Wetlands absorb potentially disastrous floodwaters during the wet season Mangroves in the delta s coastal areas prevent erosion and trap nutrients that contribute to agricultural and fisheries productivity Urban and peri urban wetlands filter excessive nutrients and toxins from agricultural industrial and municipal wastewater before it enters the Mekong mainstream Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin

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  • Stories from the Mekong » Mekong River Commission
    20th January 2015 to 31st January 2015 Prey Veng Cambodia Banking on the seasons Smallholder farmers in rural Cambodia tread a fine balance between self sufficiency and mounting debt a balance that could be tipped by climate change 10th October 2011 to 10th October 2011 Kieng Giang Viet Nam Living on the edge of the rising sea With half of their land now swallowed up by the ocean some poor families are trying their best to survive against the continuing seawater intrusion in Viet Nam s Mekong Delta but their struggle is far from over 8th March 2011 to 17th March 2011 Vientiane Lao PDR A woman s long and tough journey Madame Khempheng Pholsena s work space located at the Prime Minister s Office complex in Vientiane is hardly reminiscent of her early days as she recalls her time in a cave in Huaphan Province during the war time for independence 1st February 2011 Vientiane Lao PDR A life less ordinary If he worked in a corporate world Sai ngern Inthawong 63 could have described himself as a self starter for what he has accomplished in a wetland located on the eastern edge of Vientiane Capital Latest Events Weekly Upcoming Events 29 April 6 May 2016 MRC Chief Executive Officer joins German Ambassador on visit to Xayaburi dam site Chief Executive Officer of the Mekong River Commission MRC Secretariat accompanied the German Ambassador to Lao PDR on the Ambassador s visit to the site of Xayaburi dam on 19 April 2016 in order to gain a deeper understanding of the project Member Countries Agree on Next Steps for Council Study on Sustainable Development of the Mekong River Basin A comprehensive study on sustainable management and development of the Mekong River has completed its first phase and will move into

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  • Topics » Mekong River Commission
    1995 Agreement the MRC is responsible for formulating the Basin Development Plan BDP to promote the coordinated development and management of the Mekong River Basin s water and related resources in an integrated sustainable and equitable manner for the benefit of all riparian countries more Climate Change The countries of the Lower Mekong Basin are among the most vulnerable to climate change more Environmental Health As development in the Lower Mekong Basin increases impact assessments management plans and monitoring are needed to reduce potential impacts on ecosystems more Fisheries Fisheries are a main occupation for the Mekong s population and provide most people with their primary source of protein More Flood Drought While annual floods have the potential to cause damage to unprepared communities spoil crops and endanger food security they also play a vital role in agriculture People Millions of people living in different areas of the Lower Mekong Basin depend on the river system for their livelihood Many live in poor conditions with limited access to clean water and sanitation employment or even sufficient food more River Transport The Mekong River is an important gateway to trade centres in Southeast Asia and beyond Many locations along the Mekong have the potential to boost trade and income and benefit their national economies more Sustainable Hydropower The Lower Mekong Basin has become one of the world s most active regions with respect to hydropower development The notion that environmental and socio economic sustainability are essential to hydropower development is broadly accepted by MRC member states and the people of the Mekong region more Latest News We are hiring Exciting career opportunities with the Mekong River Commission Several positions available click to find out more Basin Development Strategy and MRC Strategic Plan 2016 2020 set the stage for new sustainable development

    Original URL path: http://mrcmekong.mrcdev.info/topics/ (2016-05-01)
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  • Agriculture & Irrigation » Mekong River Commission
    the Mekong River Basin means that some areas are conducive to high yields and others are limited by poor soil and water availability in the dry season Due to water shortages in the dry season agricultural productivity is low throughout Cambodia and Northeast Thailand and moderate in Lao PDR as well as in the Central highlands of Viet Nam Viet Nam s Delta is the only area in the basin where farmers can harvest up to seven rice crops every two years Over 10 million hectares of cultivated land is dedicated to rice production Rice is the most important crop in Asia and rain fed cultivation is the most prevalent irrigation method throughout the basin Rice paddy fields are not only a key source of subsistence food but serve many other functions such as flood mitigation soil erosion control and fishery production Cassava sugar cane soybean and maize are grown in all Mekong countries but these crops do not compare with rice in terms of production yield and significance as a local food source In order to maintain the balance needed to optimise yields irrigation regulates water supply to crops in the wet season and supplements it during the dry season Irrigation is the leading use of water in the Lower Mekong Basin accounting for over 70 and the Mekong Delta utilises more than half of this activity The total irrigated area in the basin is approximately 4 million hectares and irrigated areas are expanding steadily in all four Member Countries Most of the intensive agricultural farming occurs in Northeast Thailand and the Viet Nam Delta and there is a definite trend toward commercialising agriculture in these areas Role of the MRC In the past agriculture has had a fairly low profile at the Mekong River Commission MRC However the

    Original URL path: http://mrcmekong.mrcdev.info/topics/agriculture-and-irrigation/ (2016-05-01)
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