Second Mekong Climate Change Forum - Adaptation to Climate Change in the Transboundary Context

Siem Reap, Cambodia , 6th Oct 2014 - 8th Oct 2014

CCAI Forum GroupPhoto

Home to about 60 million people, the Lower Mekong River Basin has experienced rapid development, urbanisation and population growth which have adverse effects on the Mekong resources and populations who depend on them. Climate change has increasingly placed burdens on the environment and the people. For example rising temperatures and unpredictable rainfall are bringing drought to some areas and flooding to others. The Mekong Delta is experiencing sea level rise and increasing saltwater intrusion to its ecosystems and farmland. Extreme weather events such as typhoons are increasing in frequency and severity, destroying homes, infrastructure, livestock and crops.

Adaptation measures can help vulnerable communities and governments to better deal with such changing climate conditions and thus reduce consequences on people’s livelihoods, ecosystems and the economy.

The Mekong River Commission (MRC) held a three-day forum for government officials, academics, experts as well as representatives from river basin organisations, the Development Partners of the MRC, development agencies, civil society and the private sector to share and exchange their knowledge, experience and progress in undertaking measures to adapt to changing climate. As particular attention was given to efforts to deal with transboundary effects of climate change, the forum provided a good opportunity for stakeholders to exchange ideas on how to scale down regional adaptation strategies and apply them to the national context.

This is the second MRC regional platform on climate change following the first forum held in February 2009 in Bangkok, Thailand. In recent years, the MRC has also facilitated a number of gatherings amongst climate change practitioners and stakeholders to exchange knowledge and share lessons learnt.

KEY TOPICS

The Forum explored the following topics in keynote speeches, parallel and plenary sessions and panel discussions:

  • State of knowledge on climate change and its impacts as well as vulnerability of the environment and human well-being in the Lower Mekong Basin;
  • Climate change adaptation in the Lower Mekong Basin: Policies, strategies and actions on the ground;
  • Transboundary adaptation needs, approaches and challenges in the Lower Mekong Basin; and,
  • Possible synergy between the national and transboundary adaptation strategies.

EXPECTED OUTCOMES

The Forum aimed to achieve the following results:

  1. Enhanced understanding on up-to-date approaches and actions to address transboundary impacts of climate change in the Lower Mekong Basin;
  2. Increased dialogue, exchange of knowledge and experience within the Mekong and with other transboundary river basins;
  3. Input to the preparation of the 1st Report on Status of Climate Change and Adaptation in the Lower Mekong Basin;
  4. Input to the preparation of the Mekong Adaptation Strategy and Action Plan; and,
  5. A forum proceeding which summarises knowledge and experiences discussed and shared during the Forum.

EXHIBITION

The Forum featured a poster exhibition, including a selected number of examples to demonstrate various aspects of the Forum’s themes related to climate change adaptation in the transboundary context of the Mekong region. Pictures of the exhibition will be made available soon on this page.

OPEN PARTICIPATION

Participation in the Forum was free of charge and open to those working on climate change in the Mekong region who have a professional interest in the theme(s) of the Forum. One hundred and eighty people joined the Forum. A complete list of participants will be made available in the Forum Proceeding.

WORKING LANGUAGE

The working language for the Forum was English.

DATE AND VENUE

The Forum was held from 6th – 8th October 2014 at Apsara Angkor Resort and Conference Center, in Siem Reap, Kingdom of Cambodia.

PROGRAMME AND DOCUMENTATION

The Forum Programme and Book of Abstracts are available here. At the end of the Forum, a Forum Conclusion was issued which summarises its results and outcomes.

Speeches and presentations are available here.

The Forum Proceeding will be made available soon on this page. Please visit again.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT

Ms Tatirose Vijitpan
Programme Officer
Climate Change and Adaptation Initiative
Mekong River Commission Secretariat
Office of the MRC Secretariat in Vientiane, Lao PDR
Unit 18 Ban Sithane Neua, Sikhottabong District,
Vientiane 01000, Lao PDR
Tel: +856 21 263 263
Fax: +856 21 263 264
E-mail: tatirose@mrcmekong.org

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For more than 20 years, the Mekong River Commission (MRC) has been supporting its member countries – Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand and Vietnam – to jointly develop and manage the Lower Mekong Basin sustainably.