The Mekong River, flowing through China, Thailand, Burma, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, is home to the world’s largest inland fishery and hosts a treasure trove of biodiversity.
The river is a vital source of food security and income for millions of people in the region. Landlocked Laos is currently constructing the first hydropower dam planned for the mainstream Lower Mekong River, despite strong oppositions from its neighbours. Environmental experts warn that the Xayaburi Dam would cause significant and irreversible damage to the river’s ecosystems and affect the lives of riparian communities, which include many of the region’s poorest people.
I travelled by boat along the area designated as reservoir for the dam. During the journey, I encountered villagers who will be affected by the dam project. In portraying their daily routines, I seek to highlight the subsistence relationship they have with the river, a delicate connection that will be destroyed by the dam project.
Photographs & Text: Ore Huiying | Website: www.orehuiying.com