Yali Falls Hydropower Dam, Vietnam

<div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Description</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld"></td><td class="columns"><div class="less">Construction on the 720 MW Yali Falls Dam began in 1993 and was completed in 2001. The project is located in Vietnam, approximately 80 km upstream of the Cambodian border. In 1996, prior to completion of the dam, a temporary coffer dam burst creating major flooding in north-eastern Cambodia (12). Since then, the project has continued to impact the river, its ecosystems, and the people dependent upon it. Upon formal recognition of the downstream effects of Yali Falls water releases, following local community and civil society mobilizations, the Vietnamese and Cambodian governments cooperated to create an early warning system for major water releases, but unfortunately there are many flaws in the system that persist until today. </div><a class="seemore" href="#">See more...</a><div class="more" style="display:none">In Vietnam, a total of 1,658 families were displaced (8,475 people) over the course of the project. Researchers have found that even years after Yali Falls was constructed the relocated villagers, the majority of whom are ethnic minority groups, are still experiencing severe land shortage, poor quality of housing, and poor sanitation standards that affects their health and overall well-being (11) (15). Whilst compensation was provided for lost land and the value of the crops, replacement land was not provided that has affected villagers finding alternative means to livelihood. Given the extensive hydropower ongoing in the river basin there is also the threat that relocated villagers will need to move again due to other projects. <br/><br/>In Cambodia, approximately 55,000 people from 16 different ethnic minority groups in Ratanakiri and Stung Treng provinces have been affected and continue to feel the effects of Yali Falls. Downstream, Cambodian villagers have faced a loss in rice production, loss of livestock due to flash flooding, loss of fisheries, and damages to personal property and farming and fishing equipment. Such major losses have occurred due to irregular water flow changes from the dam's flood gates, which renders farming and fishing along the river banks dangerous. Between 1999-2001, approximately 39 people were reportedly killed (11) (15). Despite official recognition on behalf of the Vietnamese government of downstream effects on Cambodian people only three official meetings have taken place to discuss creating compensation plans and remedy. (5) (6) (7)<br/><br/><a class="seeless" href="#">(See less)</a></div></td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Basic Data</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Name</td><td>Yali Falls Hydropower Dam, Vietnam</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Country</td><td><a href="/country/vietnam">Vietnam</a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Province</td><td>Gai Lai Province and Kon Tum Province, Vietnam; Ratanakiri Province and Stung Treng Province, Cambodia</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Site</td><td>Sesan River</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Accuracy of Location</td><td>LOW country/state level</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Source of Conflict</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (1st level)</td><td>Water Management</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Conflict (2nd level)</td><td>Interbasin water transfers/transboundary water conflicts<br /> Dams and water distribution conflicts<br /> Aquaculture and fisheries</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Specific Commodities</td><td><a href='/commodity/land'>Land</a><br /><a href='/commodity/electricity'>Electricity</a><br /><a href='/commodity/fish'>Fish</a><br /><a href='/commodity/water'>Water</a><br />Irrigation</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Project Details and Actors</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Details</td><td class="columns">720 MW</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Project Area (in hectares)</td><td>6,450</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Level of Investment (in USD)</td><td>USD$640 million - USD$1 billion</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Type of Population</td><td>Rural</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Potential Affected Population</td><td>Cambodia 55 000; Vietnam 8500</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Start Date</td><td>11/1993</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Company Names or State Enterprises</td><td><a href='/company/electricity-of-vietnam'>Electricity of Vietnam</a> from <a href='/country-of-company/vietnam'><small>Vietnam</small></a></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Relevant government actors</td><td>Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Environmental justice organisations and other supporters</td><td>Vietnam National University (CRES)</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">The Conflict and the Mobilization</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)</td><td>MEDIUM (street protests, visible mobilization)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">When did the mobilization begin</td><td>Mobilization for reparations once impacts have been felt</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Groups Mobilizing</td><td>Indigenous groups or traditional communities<br /> International ejos<br /> Local ejos<br /> Local scientists/professionals</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Forms of Mobilization</td><td>Development of a network/collective action<br /> Involvement of national and international NGOs<br /> Official complaint letters and petitions</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Impacts</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Environmental Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Desertification/Drought, Floods (river, coastal, mudflow), Food insecurity (crop damage), Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Soil erosion, Deforestation and loss of vegetation cover, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality, Large-scale disturbance of hydro and geological systems, Reduced ecological / hydrological connectivity<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Waste overflow</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Loss of arable land</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Health Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Accidents, Malnutrition, Health problems related to alcoholism, prostitution, Occupational disease and accidents, Deaths, Other environmental related diseases<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Exposure to unknown or uncertain complex risks (radiation, etc…)</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other</td><td>Health problems related to water quality</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Socio-economic Impacts</td><td><strong>Visible: </strong>Lack of work security, labour absenteeism, firings, unemployment, Loss of livelihood, Loss of traditional knowledge/practices/cultures, Violations of human rights, Land dispossession, Loss of landscape/sense of place<br /><strong>Potential: </strong>Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Militarization and increased police presence, Social problems (alcoholism, prostitution, etc..), Specific impacts on women</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Outcome</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Project Status</td><td>In operation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Pathways for conflict outcome / response</td><td>Compensation</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Do you consider this as a success?</td><td>No</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Why? Explain briefly.</td><td>EIAs completed did not consider impacts downstream in Cambodia. Impacts have been felt by communities in Cambodia without restitution or satisfactory redress. Vietnamese government promised there would be no impacts to these people and there were. There is also a lack of information on the Vietnamese project site itself and the impacts felt by the Vietnamese ethnic groups in this region.</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Sources and Materials</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Legislations</td><td><table><tr><td><p> The Agreement on the Cooperation for the Sustainable Development of the Mekong River Basin (1995 Agreement)<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The 1992 Vietnamese Constitution<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Land Law (1993) (Vietnam)<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The Law of Environmental Protection (1993) (Vietnam)<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Decree 175/CP (1994) (Vietnam)<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Decree 22/1998/ND-CP (Vietnam)<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Law on Water Resources (May 1998) (Vietnam)<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">References</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Harvard Law School's December 2005. Down River: The Consequences of Vietnam's Dams on Life in Cambodia and their Meaning in International Law,<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.law.harvard.edu/programs/hrp/documents/down_river.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Cao Thi Thu Yen (2003). Towards Sustainability of Vietnam's Large Dams: Resettlement in Hydropower Projects. Master of Science Thesis, Department of Infrastructure, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Dang Quang Tinh (n.d.). Participatory Planning and Management for Flood Mitigation and Preparedness and Trends in the Red River Basin, Viet Nam. Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Doberstein, Brent (2003). EIA models and capacity building in Viet Nam: an analysis of development aid programs. Environmental Impact Assessment Review. Elsevier Inc. 24(2004) 283-318<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Long, Le Thanh (2001). Vietnamese Water Resources Legislation and Legal Regulation of Dams: Viewed Through the World Commission on Dams' Suggested Policy Framework. American University International Law Review. Vol. 16, Issue 6, Article 9, pp 1631-1694<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Nga Dao (2011) Damming Rivers in Vietnam: A Lesson Learned in the Tay Bac Region. Journal of Vietnamese Studies, Vol. 6, Issue 2, pp 106-140.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Nga Dao (2010) †œDam Development in Vietnam: The Evolution of Dam-Induced Resettlement Policy† Water Alternatives, Vol. 3, Issue 2, pp 324-340<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Nga Dao Thi Viet (2012) Resettlement, Displacement and Agrarian Change in Northern Uplands of Vietnam. PhD Dissertation Graduate Program in Geography. York University. Toronto, Ontario.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Pham, Anh Huyen (2010). Evaluation of Socio-Economic Impact Assessment in Power Sector Projects in Vietnam. School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich. Masters Dissertation.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> The Fisheries Office (2000). A Study of the Downstream Impacts of the Yali Falls Dam in the Se San River Basin in Ratanakiri Province, Northeast Cambodia. The Fisheries Office, Ratanakiri Province. The Non-Timber Forest Products (NTFP) Project.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Hirsch, Philip & Andrew Wyatt. 2004. Negotiating local livelihoods: Scales of conflict in the Se San River Basin. Asia Pacific Viewpoint 45.51-68.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Hung, Dao Trong., Nga, Dao Thi Viet., & Trung, Tran Chi (2004). Study into Resettlement at the Yali Falls Dam, Kontum Province. Institute of Ecology and Biological Resources and International Rivers Network. Hanoi.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> McKenney, Bruce (2001). †œEconomic Valuation of Livelihood Income Losses And Other Tangible Downstream Impacts From The Yali Falls Dam To The Se San River Basin In Ratanakiri Province, Cambodia† Prepared for Oxfam America. Phnom Penh, Cambodia.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Perera, Andrea (2007). First the rivers, then the forests: a fragile balance: Rural communities are struggling to survive as they lose their resources one at a time. OXFAM America.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Sangha, Kim (2008). Heavy water release from Vietnam's Yali Falls dam floods communities in northeastern Cambodia. Probe International. Energy Probe Research Foundation.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Trandem, Ame. 2008. A Vietnamese/Cambodian Transboundary Dialogue: Impacts of dams on the Se San River. Development 51.108-13.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Wyatt, Andrew B. & Ian G. Baird. 2007. Transboundary Impact Assessment in the Sesan River Basin: The Case of the Yali Falls Dam. International Journal of Water Resources Development 23.427-42.<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Nguyen, Ang Tuan (2012). A Case Study on Power Sector Restructuring in Vietnam. Pacific Energy Summit. Hanoi, Vietnam<br/></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Nguyen, Quang Tuyen (2010). †œLand Law Reforms in Vietnam †“ Past & Present†. Working Paper Series No. 015. Asian Law Institute.<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Chapman, E.C. (2000). †œSpecial Report: Mekong Basin †“ the Yali Falls Disaster And Its Aftermath. AFG Venture Group. Report- Mekong Basin - The Yali Falls Disaster And Its Aftermath.php<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.afgventuregroup.com/asian_analysis/Special" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Oxfam Australia (2013). Yali Falls Dam. Oxfam Australia 3S Critical Environmental Zone<br/><a class="refanch small" href="https://www.oxfam.org.au/explore/infrastructure-people-and-environment/save-the-mekong/3s-critical-environmental-zone/yali-falls-dam/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Thim, Ly (2010). Dynamics of Planning Process in the Lower Mekong Basin: A Management Analysis for the Se San Sub-Basin. Doctoral Dissertation. Rheinischen Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universitat zu Bonn. Prey Veng, Cambodia.<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://hss.ulb.uni-bonn.de/2010/2197/2197.pdf" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Probe International, †œHeavy water release from Vietnam's Yali Falls dam floods communities in northeastern Cambodia:<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://journal.probeinternational.org/2005/09/01/heavy-water-release-vietnams-yali-falls-dam-floods-communities-northeastern-cambodia/" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr><tr><td><p> Inter Press Service News Agency: Villagers Count Costs of Dam Building in Vietnam: Savuth, Pouv (2003). CAMBODIA: Villagers Count Costs of Dam Building in Vietnam†. Inter Press Service News Agency. IPS media fellowship programme Our Mekong: A Vision amid Globalisation.<br/></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Media Links</td><td><table><tr><td><p> Global Water Forum:<br/><a class="refanch small" href="http://www.globalwaterforum.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/Yali-Falls-dam-on-Sesan-Vietnam.jpg" target="_blank">[click to view]</a></p></td></tr></table></td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Other Comments</td><td>There is an extreme lack of information about impacts felt to Vietnamese people and ethnic minority groups. <br/><br/>The level of mobilization occurring and has occurred in the past in Vietnam is almost non-existent in comparison to that within Cambodia</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div><div class="horipane"><div class="title active">Meta Information</div><div class="content"><table class="table"><tbody><tr><td class="fld">Contributor</td><td>Carl Middleton, Sarah Allen, Matilde Sgotto</td></tr><tr><td class="fld">Last update</td><td>19/12/2014</td></tr></tbody></table></div></div>