[ineb] Fw: Urgent Action Requested on the plans to dam the Salween River
- Dear friends,
A group who are working on a campaign against the construction of a dam on
Salween River posted this to ask for your inputs.
>> From: Salween Watch <salweenwatch@...>
>> To: kristian@...
>> Subject: Urgent Action Requested on the plans to dam the Salween River
>> Date: 23 ????????? 2542 4:29
>> SALWEEN WATCH
>> Northern Thailand,
>> 18th November 1999.
>> Dear Friends,
>> The attached message, which we hope you are interested in and can open
>> no difficulties, is about the plans to build giant dams on the Salween
>> in Burma. The planning has now reached a critical decision making stage,
>> beyond which it will become ever more difficult to stop this nightmare
>> project from going ahead.
>> The 'feasibility study' for what is understood will be a 188 metre high,
>> 3,300 megawatt hydroelectric dam has already been completed. It is
>> that governments and financiers are now evaluating this study with a view
>> approving or rejecting it. We have heard news that a decision is likely
>> be made by December 1999.
>> Another related development that may be decided very soon to build power
>> lines to supply electricity to Burma from Thailand, which currently has a
>> big oversupply. Thailand may approve either the dams or the power line as
>> way to make peace with the Burmese military.
>> Damming the Salween River in Burma would have extraordinarily harmful
>> consequences above and beyond the many negative environmental and social
>> impacts large dams are well known to have on forests, farmlands,
>> fisheries, downstream soil fertility, geological stability, debt levels,
>> communities, etc.
>> The Salween runs through areas that are the heartlands of ethnic and
>> indigenous peoples who have been suffering in what has been described as
>> longest continuously running civil war in current history. The attempts
>> dam the river are part of a comprehensive military strategy by one of the
>> world's most brutal military regimes to finalize their occupation of
>> ethnic lands.
>> The reality of what the Salween dam plans represent is untold suffering
>> tens of thousands of people in the Shan States whose villages are in,
>> and to the west of the dam flood area. Some 1,400 villages of these
>> have recently been forced from their lands in the context of a so-called
>> anti-insurgency program. Tens of thousands of Karens and Karenni people
>> already living in refugees camps in Thailand, having been driven from
>> lands by previous military operations in projected flood and dam site
>> The plans that are most advanced are for a dam that will flood dozens of
>> villages and many hundreds of kilometers of forest and farmland. This
>> forever deprive the internally displaced peoples and the refugees of the
>> lands they yearn to return to.
>> Damming the Salween will benefit few people other than those in the
>> privileged business, bureaucratic and military circles. They will deepen
>> suffering of many who already have far more than their share of misery.
>> therefore request that you add your voices and written words to ours to
>> to stop these plans from advancing further. Thanking you for your
>> and whatever efforts you can take towards this goal.
>> Salween Watch members