<< Chapter < Page Chapter >> Page >

Earth, air, fire and water: multiple natural resource issues in multiple dimensions

The mekong river

20th century economists, not to mention other social scientists and many natural scientists, rarely recognized and understood critical interactions between major societal issues and problems, even when they may have understood how each of these problems individually could overlap many nations at once.

Such is the case with the Mekong River in Southeast Asia. Here we find sustainability problems and potential solutions interacting to a remarkable degree along the 3,600 miles of the river. Serious water issues are of course involved. To complicate matters, there are 7 nations along the 313,000 square miles drainage area of the Mekong, which begins in South China and goes through Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, boarders Thailand and ends up flowing through Vietnam into the South China Sea.

Improbably, the formerly hermit Kingdom of Myanmar (formerly Burma) was the first (in 2012) to seriously challenge the threat to the Mekong’s water, forest and fisheries caused by plans for over 30 dams for hydropower along the Mekong, including 3 very large Chinese-financed dams. The search for alternative energy (hydropower) threatens to have ominous impact on fisheries in Southeast Asia.

Of the world’s rivers only the Amazon has more species of fish than the Mekong. No one really knows what the impact of three dams on Mekong might have on fisheries. The country most at risk from planned Chinese dams along the Mekong is Cambodia and the resource most endangered is fish. This is a serious matter, considering that 70% of the protein intake by Cambodians comes from fish caught in the Mekong and its great lake.

In 2014 some dams on the Mekong appear to be going ahead. Will all planned dams be built? Vietnam strongly opposes the largest dam (Vietnam will be far downstream of the dam). And Myanmar is now speaking out, but Cambodia and Laos have not opposed the dams, perhaps owing to China’s political influences in these nations.

Possible solutions to freshwater fish problems

Freshwater fisheries in China, Vietnam, Laos, Peru, and Sub-Saharan Africa- are most at risk. This is one reason why all countries must be very, very selective about hydroelectric dam projects on rivers that are important sources of protein.

Any solution to the kinds of problems facing the Mekong will require tight regulations and what is even more difficult, coordination of regulation across seven nations. Can regulation work under these circumstances? It has worked in the Alaska Halibut fishery, the Iceland fishery and the New Zealand fishery. But the outlook for effective regulation on the Mekong River or Lake Victoria in Africa is not good.

The reasons are traceable to Institutional problems, especially weak governance, corruption and rent-seeking activities of the kinds considered in chapter ___.

Consider how the Alaskan system has operated both in salt and fresh water (rivers).

Alaska commercial fisheries are the most productive and valuable in the U.S., with a value of over $3 billion including Halibut, Salmon and Herring. When combined with sport fishing, the industry contributes an estimated $7.4 billion and nearly 90,000 full-time equivalent jobs to the Alaskan economy. In 2010, Alaska produced 53% of the fish harvested in the United States “Alaska Economic Trends”, Alaska Department of Labor, November 11, Vol. 31(11), p.3. . This is the leading fishing state in the U.S. in one of the largest fishing nations worldwide. According to the FAO, the USA had the 4th highest catch in 2007. Alaska introduced ITQs in the late 20th century. How relevant to the Alaska experience for emerging nations fisheries? Between 1980 and 1995, the Alaska Halibut fisheries experienced severe strain, as the number of fishing vessels expanded rapidly.

Questions & Answers

so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
types of nano material
abeetha Reply
I start with an easy one. carbon nanotubes woven into a long filament like a string
many many of nanotubes
what is the k.e before it land
what is the function of carbon nanotubes?
I'm interested in nanotube
what is nanomaterials​ and their applications of sensors.
Ramkumar Reply
what is nano technology
Sravani Reply
what is system testing?
preparation of nanomaterial
Victor Reply
Yes, Nanotechnology has a very fast field of applications and their is always something new to do with it...
Himanshu Reply
good afternoon madam
what is system testing
what is the application of nanotechnology?
In this morden time nanotechnology used in many field . 1-Electronics-manufacturad IC ,RAM,MRAM,solar panel etc 2-Helth and Medical-Nanomedicine,Drug Dilivery for cancer treatment etc 3- Atomobile -MEMS, Coating on car etc. and may other field for details you can check at Google
anybody can imagine what will be happen after 100 years from now in nano tech world
after 100 year this will be not nanotechnology maybe this technology name will be change . maybe aftet 100 year . we work on electron lable practically about its properties and behaviour by the different instruments
name doesn't matter , whatever it will be change... I'm taking about effect on circumstances of the microscopic world
how hard could it be to apply nanotechnology against viral infections such HIV or Ebola?
silver nanoparticles could handle the job?
not now but maybe in future only AgNP maybe any other nanomaterials
I'm interested in Nanotube
this technology will not going on for the long time , so I'm thinking about femtotechnology 10^-15
can nanotechnology change the direction of the face of the world
Prasenjit Reply
At high concentrations (>0.01 M), the relation between absorptivity coefficient and absorbance is no longer linear. This is due to the electrostatic interactions between the quantum dots in close proximity. If the concentration of the solution is high, another effect that is seen is the scattering of light from the large number of quantum dots. This assumption only works at low concentrations of the analyte. Presence of stray light.
Ali Reply
the Beer law works very well for dilute solutions but fails for very high concentrations. why?
bamidele Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
Privacy Information Security Software Version 1.1a
Got questions? Join the online conversation and get instant answers!
QuizOver.com Reply

Get the best Algebra and trigonometry course in your pocket!

Source:  OpenStax, Economic development for the 21st century. OpenStax CNX. Jun 05, 2015 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11747/1.12
Google Play and the Google Play logo are trademarks of Google Inc.

Notification Switch

Would you like to follow the 'Economic development for the 21st century' conversation and receive update notifications?