Hydropower schemes have taken on an important role in water resource management in the Lower Mekong River Basin. The Mekong River Commission (MRC) recognised hydropower’s potential to secure economic growth and general welfare, but equally acknowledged the potential impact on connected ecosystems and livelihoods. Currently, knowledge on regional cooperative mechanisms for developing and managing hydropower in an integrated way with wider water and environmental matters is limited.
adelphi was thus commissioned by the GIZ and the MRC Initiative for Sustainable Hydropower to provide recommendations on sustainable hydropower development and management to the MRC. adelphi gathered experiences from the various river basin organisations that have established regional transboundary mechanisms for managing hydropower schemes. A set of case studies analysed various approaches which could be applied to ensure that hydropower developments in transboundary basins are beneficial to all riparians while reducing potential negative impacts. Finally, the lessons learned and recommendations were summarised in informative and easy to read fact sheets for the MRC.