Colonial and anti-colonial movements’ have deeply shaped the patterns and impacts of concessions in SE Asia. In some cases, communities have experienced dispossession through land grabs dressed as concessions. In others, concessions are part of a re-concentration of land holding. Either way, the concession model fits well with ideologies of modernisation.
The Mekong/ASEAN Environmental Week (MAEW) is an annual regional platform and process for deeper sharing among people in the region of Southeast Asia, where key actors can exchange, analyze and debate on emerging issues that significantly affect them. This year the focus was on “Redesign ASEAN: Peoples' Voices in World Crises." Discussions covered the environmental situation as well as the economic, political, and other aspects that impact the region and its people.
The industrial production of natural rubber has always been synonymous with destruction and exploitation. About 70% is used to manufacture tires. As the use of cars, trucks and airplanes increases, the use of rubber will also increase. And this does not come without controversy.
Launched by the Thai organization TERRA, this publication records the story of Mekong riparian communities from 25 sub-districts in 7 provinces of north-eastern Thailand (Isaan). It aims to bring to life the knowledge uniquely shaped by south-east Asia’s longest international river, the Mekong River. It illustrates the delicate complexity of the Mekong hydrology and sub-ecosystems and how these provide the basis of life and livelihoods to the people along the river. It also explores the local cultures and socioeconomic values attached to it with a hint of history and ways of life.
Different words, different sides
“The dams built on the Mekong mainstream and other rivers in the region have resulted in severe changes in the Mekong’s ecosystems, endangering life, livelihoods and the economy of the entire region. Indigenous peoples, women and children are most affected by these changes. The dams have also worsened the impacts of climate change that we are already facing.”
On August 25, 2015, employees of the Fibria Company in Tres Lagunas, Mato Grosso do Sul, made public the recent layoffs made by the company - one of the largest pulp producers in Brazil. “In the last few weeks alone there were almost 18 layoffs. And the worst is that some workers with occupational diseases were also dismissed.” The dismissals are thought to be a retaliation due to workers’ mobilization surrounding the creation of a new union organisation.
Rivers Coalition in Cambodia (RCC) together with national and international organizations, insist to immediately stop all activities related to the construction of the Don Sahong Dam after the concession agreement was officially approved earlier this September in a unilateral decision by the Government of Laos.
Dear friends, Local communities in the Mekong region in Southeast Asia, who depend on the Mekong river and numerous other rivers and lakes for their livelihoods, need our urgent support. The dams already built on the main Mekong river and other rivers in the region have resulted in severe changes in these rivers, endangering life, livelihoods and the economy in the entire region.