Watershed Management International Conference

Chiang Mai, Thailand, 9th Mar 2011 - 11th Mar 2011

Watershed management partner logos

BACKGROUND

Watersheds are the smallest hydrological and management units of river basins. As the point source for all of a basin’s water, biodiversity and ecosystem functions, they offer opportunities for improved livelihoods for the local population in the watersheds and river basins, but also suffer from a range of degradation challenges that are associated with human activities. It is therefore essential that watersheds are viewed as the basic unit in a river basin, from the local sub-basin through the national to the transboundary level, for biophysical, socioeconomic and institutional characterization. Despite this importance – not least the cumulative impacts from the many watersheds that constitute a river basin - watersheds are often neglected in river basin management.

This International Conference aimed to engage in dialogue and debate on the challenges of and solutions for better watershed and river basin management, using innovative methods of facilitation and conference design. It drew on both international, regional and local experience, and the diverse views expressed by multiple stakeholders, to generated recommendations and ideas for how the Mekong River Commission (MRC) and other basin organisations could better incorporate watersheds into their focus, and deliver practical change within them.

THE CONFERENCE

The Conference was hosted by the Mekong River Commission (MRC) in collaboration with the following co-conveners: Asian Development Bank (ADB), Challenge Program on Water and Food (CPWF), German Cooperation, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), International Water management Institute (IWMI), Mekong Program on Water Environment and Resilience (M-POWER), United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

The conference was highly interactive. Dialogue on three parallel topics were a key feature of the conference:

  • Topic 1: GOOD PRACTICES
    The state of integrated watershed and river basin management: practical solutions and experiences
  • Topic 2: GOVERNANCE
    Functional governance and institutional frameworks for integrated watershed and river basin management
  • Topic 3: ECONOMICS AND FINANCING
    Economic and financing issues in sustainable watershed and river basin management

Each Topic was managed by one or more co-conveners who were responsible for the detailed planning of the Topic discussions and the identification and invitation of Facilitators, Topic keynotes, Speakers and Panelists.

EXPECTED OUTCOMES

  • Increased awareness of the importance of watershed management in the Mekong Basin.
  • Concepts and good practices on how to improve, coordinate and position watershed management as an integral part of river basin management in the Mekong Basin context.
  • A Technical Paper by MRC and co-conveners aimed at driving debate and suggesting solutions for improved watershed and river basin management.

PARTICIPATION

Conference participants included senior government officials of the MRC’s Member Countries and Dialogue Partners (Myanmar and China); representatives of watersheds/sub-river basin committees and River Basin Organizations/Committees (RBOs, RBCs) in the Mekong countries; communities, districts and provincial representatives, civil society groups (NGOs, INGOs and others); Development Partners; economic, environmental and social experts; professional associations; research groups; private sector representatives (e.g., hydropower and mining developers, tourism operators); and the media.

Most of the participants were personally invited by MRC and the co-convenors, but a number of participants were invited in response to an open registration. For the open registration, there were no funds to support travel related costs, however, there were no fees for participation. Participant capacity was limited to 250 people.

LANGUAGE

The meeting was conducted in English with simultaneous translation in Lao, Thai, Khmer and Vietnamese.

FIELD TRIP

The Conference on 10-11 March was preceded by a field trip on 9 March. There were two field visits.

  • Route 1: Kuay Hong Krai Royal Project
  • Route 2: Doi Inthanon National Park
      Option 1 –Nature Trail at Kew Mae Pan
      Option 2 –Siriphum Waterfall

EXHIBITION

There were a POSTER SESSION on Day 2 (11 Mar. 2011), from 3pm to 4pm (1 hour). During the session the creators of posters had the chance to lively interact, exchange and present their work related to watershed management.

VENUE AND HOTELS

The venue was at the Le Meridian Hotel in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Block bookings were made at Le Meridian and two other hotels for participants convenience.

For further information please contact:

Ms. Amphavanh SISOUVANH

Component Manager/WSM Focal Point
Watershed Management Project, Planning Division
Mekong River Commission Secretariat, Vientiane, Lao PDR
Tel: + 856 21 263 263 ext: 4040
Email: amphavanh@mrcmekong.org

Ms. Manothone Vorabouth

Senior Assistant
Mekong River Commission Secretariat
Vientiane, Lao PDR
Tel: +856 21 263 263 Ext: 4044
Fax: + 856 21 263 264
Email: manothone@mrcmekong.org

 

FINAL OVERALL PROGRAMME

Wednesday 9 March, 2011
Pre-conference registration: Lobby Level, Le Meridien Hotel
8 and 9 March 2011 between 15:00 – 19:00 p.m
Departure time: 08:00 a.m.
@Le Meridian
Route 1: Huay Hong Krai Royal Project
Green Line Van
Departure time: 07:30 a.m. @Le Meridian Route 2, Option 1: Doi Inthanon National Park Nature Trail at Kew Mae Pan
Orange Line Van
Route 2, Option 2: Doi Inthanon National Park Siriphum Waterfall
Purple Line Van

 

Thursday 10 March, 2011
7:30 - 8:30 Registration

OPENNING PLENARY
8:30 - 8:50 Welcome addresses:
  • H.E. Pimuk Simaroj, Vice Minister of Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), Thailand
  • Mr. Jeremy Bird, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Mekong River Commission Secretariat (MRCS)
08:50– 09:05

Keynote:

Evidence‐based policy development in watershed management, Dr. Colin Chartres, Director‐General, International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

09:05 – 09:20

Keynote:

The new generation of watershed management programs and projects, Dr. Thomas Hofer, Senior Forestry Officer, Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)

09:20 – 09:35

Keynote:

  • Enhanced Cooperation and Common Development
    Mr. Lu Jian, Minister Counsellor, Deputy Head of Mission, China
09:35 – 09:50

Keynote:

Watershed management through cooperative action, Ms. Norma J. Azad, Carson Water Sub‐conservancy District, Nevada, USA

09:50 – 10:15 Questions and answers
10:15 – 10:45 BREAK
10:45 – 11:15

Keynote:

Watershed and river basin management in Thailand – a political perspective, H.E. Mr. Surajit Chirawate, Senator, Thailand

11:15 – 11:45 Presentation:
  • Watershed management in the Doi Inthanon National Park - from local action to better management
    Facilitated presentation by local representatives
11:45 – 12:00 Introduction to Conference Topic sessions, Prof. Torkil Jønch Clausen, Conference Facilitator
12:00 – 13:00 LUNCH
13:00 – 16:00 Topic 1: Good practices
Part A
Topic 2: Governance
Part A
Topic 3: Economics and Finance
Part A
16:00 - 16:30 BREAK
16:30 – 17:00 END‐OF‐DAY PLENARY
Impressions of the day (Facilitators)
18:30 – 21:00 SOCIAL FUNCTION/DINNER RECEPTION

 

Friday, 11 March 2011
Good morning plenary
08:00 – 08:45
Report‐back and summary of yesterday
  • Topic rapporteurs
Directions for the day
  • Conference Facilitator
08:45 – 09:00

Keynote:

Good practices: Local Watershed Management: The Key to Sustainable Water Resources Management, Dr. Chris Wensley, Lead Professional, Asian Development Bank (ADB)

09:00 – 09:15

Keynote:

Governance: From local watershed management to integrated river basin management: reflections on 30 years of Australian experience, Dr. Andrew Campbell, Director of the Research School for the Environment and Livelihoods, Charles Darwin University, Australia

09:15 – 09:30

Keynote:

Governance: From the smallest watershed to the Mekong River – the governance challenge, Ms. Do Hong Phan, Vietnam

09:30 – 09:45

Keynote:

Economics and Finance: perspectives from Europe, Dr. Thomas Dworak, Senior Consultant, Fresh‐Thoughts Consulting, Austria

09:45 - 10:00 Questions and answers
10:00 - 10:30 BREAK
10:30 - 12:00 Topic 1: Good practices
Part B
Topic 2: Governance
Part B
Topic 3: Economics and Finance
Part B
12:00 - 13:00 LUNCH
13:00 - 15:00 Topic 1: Good practices
Part B - cont'd
Topic 2: Governance
Part B - cont'd
Topic 3: Economics and Finance
Part B - cont'd
15:00 - 16:00

EXHIBITION/POSTER SESSION + Tea/Coffee Break

16:00 - 17:00

CONCLUDING AND CLOSING PLENARY

Report‐back from the day’s Topic sessions

Chiang Mai Summary: Conclusions and recommendations: Outlook for the Mekong

Dr. Petra Schill, GIZ

Closing addresses by Royal Government of Thailand and MRC

 

Programme for Topic 1

Topic 1: Good Practice (Conveners: IWMI, FAO, IUCN, GIZ, WWF, ADB)
This topic will focus on: what are the biophysical and social issues influencing sustainable watershed management and what mechanisms are required to overcome these challenges that will ensure more sustainable, equitable and efficient approaches to integrated land and water resources management. This will be achieved by drawing upon current knowledge and examples of best practices; on what works and does not; recent findings from research on key services and issues in watershed management and be forward looking in assessing the impact of future change drivers (i.e. climate variability).
Part A (THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2011):
Land and water resource challenges facing watershed management
Day 1 Facilitator: Dr Robert Mather (IUCN)
1300 – 1310 Introduction to Session  Day 1 Facilitator
1310 – 1330 Sediments: a double edged sword – or a shield?
Dr Erland Jensen, MRCS
1330 – 1350 Aquatic ecosystem connectivity – an important element in sustainable watershed management
Dr Nikolai Sindorf and
Ms Dang Thuy Trang, WWF
1350 ‐ 1410 Good Practices on Management of Hydropower Development and Environmental Protection in the Lancang River  MR Zhou Shichun, China
1410 – 1430 Land cover change and catchment water yields: From local to regional scales
Dr Guillaume Lacombe, IWMI
and Dr. Alain Pierret, IRD
1430 – 1450 Implications of climate change on watershed management in the Mekong basin Dr Kien Tran Mai, MRCS
1450 – 1550

Panel discussion: A key focus of the presentations in this session is on the impacts of what may appear as a good practice or those that have a positive outcome at the watershed scale but may have a negative outcome at the basin scale. How do we ensure that what is presented as a good practice at the watershed scale meets overall goods and ecosystem services at the basin scale. What are the key goods and ecosystem services that are desirable when establishing sound watershed management? The discussion will centre around a set of deliberative questions that will stimulate discussion and debate between Panelists and the audience.

Panelists:
Mr. Ken Serey Rotha, Department of Natural Resource Protection and Conservation of Ministry of Environment.
Mr. Thierry Facon, FAO Regional Office, Bangkok.
Dr Erland Jensen, MRCS, Vientiane, Lao PDR.
Dr Paulo Pasicolan, Nam Theun‐Nam Kading River Basin Management Project, Lao PDR
Mr Zhou Shichun, China

Day 1 Facilitator
1550 – 1600 Discussion and summary of the day’s session Day 1 Facilitator
1600 – 1630 Tea/Coffee Break
1630 – 1700 Return to conference end‐of‐day plenary: impressions of the day

 

Part B (FRIDAY, 11 MARCH 2011): Creating enabling conditions
Day 2 Facilitator: Dr Vladimir Smakhtin (IWMI)
1030 – 1050 Overview of key issues, experiences and lesson learned of Watershed Management in the lower Mekong Basin Mr Min Bunnara, GIZ/MRC
1050 – 1110 Linking watershed management to river basin management by water outcomes: Shaking the tree Mr Thierry Facon, FAO
1110 – 1130 Micro Watershed Development in the Uttarakhand Himalayas: The Balkila Watershed
Dr. R. B. S. Rawat, Principal Chief Conservator of Forest, Forest Department, Uttarakhand, India
1130 – 1150 The Miyun Livelihoods and Landscape Project (LLS) China Ms Zhuang Hao, IUCN
1150 – 1200 Reflections on the mornings presentations Day 2 Facilitator
1200 – 1300 Lunch
1300 – 1320 IWRM best practices in Pilot 4‐Ps Basin towards Integrated River Basin Management H.E. Watt Botkosal, Cambodia
1320 – 1340 Nam Xong Sub‐River Basin Management and Practices: from local perspectives and Participation
Mr. Mixay Thanthavong,
Vangvieng Water Resources and Environment Office, Vientiane Province, Lao PDR
1340 – 1400 Srepok river basin council and IWRM in the Srepok basin Mr. Pham Tan Ha, Vietnam.
1400 – 1420 Natural Resources Management by Local Communities: A Case study of Mae Tha Sub‐district, Chiang Mai
Mr. Therdsak Kongprom,
Thailand.
1420 – 1500

Panel discussion: Implementing best practices and associated outcomes in securing sustainable watershed management is a prerequisite for ensuring cumulative positive impacts at the basin scale. The question arises how is this achieved and what lessons have we learnt? The discussion will centered around a set of deliberative questions that will stimulate discussion and debate between Panelists and the audience.

Panelists:
Dr Thomas Hofer, FAO.
Mr Min Bunnara, GTZ/MRC.
Mr Watt Botkosal, Deputy Secretary General, CNMC.
Dr Chris Wensley, ADB
Dr Khamlar Phanvilay, Dean Faculty of Forestry in charge of
Watershed Management Department of National University of Laos.
D. Long, Southern Institute for WRM, Vietnam.

Day 2 Facilitator
1500 – 1600 EXHIBITION/POSTER SESSION + Tea/Coffee Break
1600 – 1700 Return to conference concluding plenary:
conclusions and recommendations

 

Session Coordinators
Andrew Noble, IWMI, a.noble@cgiar.org
Min Bunnara, GTZ, bunnara.min@giz.de
Dr. Christoph Muziol, IUCN, christoph.muziol@iucn.org

Programme for Topic 2

Topic 2: Governance (Conveners: CPWF, IUCN, M‐POWER)
This session is about learning from experiences with existing watershed governance arrangements, and using and expanding these lessons to move towards horizontally and vertically integrated “whole basin” governance. It will attempt to identify and address the additional challenges that exist at the larger, basin scale that cannot be adequately addressed by simply expanding watershed governance mechanisms.
Part A (THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2011): A primary focus on watersheds/small basins and stakeholder involvement
Day 1 Facilitator: Dipak Gyawali, Nepal Water Conservation Foundation
1300 – 1315 Introduction to the Session
John Dore, Senior Water Resources Advisor – Mekong Region, AusAID, Lao PDR
1315 – 1335
Setting the scene: Governance in watershed management
5min Q&A
Lu Xing, Professor and Director
of the GMS Study Center, Yunnan University, China
1335 – 1355
Improving watershed management through Multi‐Stakeholder
Platforms

Improving watershed management through Multi‐Stakeholder Platforms
5min Q&A

Santita Ganjanapan, Professor,
Faculty of Social Sciences,
Chiang Mai University, Thailand
1355 – 1405
Introduction to the Panel/Audience Debate
Local organisations are good enough
This session will debate the following motion: This house believes that local informal and local formal institutions are necessary and sufficient in managing watersheds in the Mekong Region.
Dipak Gyawali, Nepal Water
Conservation Foundation,
Nepal
1405 – 1415 Opening statement: Leader in support of the motion Xu Jianchu, ICRAF, China
1415 – 1425 Opening statement: Leader against the motion Pech Sokhem,
M‐POWER, Canada
1425 – 1530 Panel debate begins: Questions presented by facilitator, audience participation, comments/points made by panelists All
For Against
Do Hong Phan, Vietnam Water
Partnership, Vietnam
Khamla Phanvilay, NUOL,
Lao PDR
Xu Jianchu, ICRAF, China Pech Sokhem, M‐POWER,
Canada
Stephen Sparkes, Theun Hinboun Power Company, Lao PDR Kim Geheb, CPWF, Lao PDR
1530 – 1545 Concluding statements (for or against the motion) Leads
1545 – 1600 Summary Remarks Andrew Campbell, Charles Darwin University, Australia
1600 – 1630
Tea/Coffee Break
1630 –1700 Return to conference end‐of‐day plenary: impressions of the day

 

Part B (FRIDAY, 11 MARCH 2011):
Up‐scaling from the watershed to sub‐basin/basin and institutional models at the river basin level
Day 2 Facilitator: Dipak Gyawali, Nepal Water Conservation Foundation
1030 – 1045 Introduction to the session
John Dore, Senior Water Resources Advisor – Mekong Region, AusAID, Lao PDR
1045 – 1105
Fishery Co‐management Approach: Lessons learnt from the Xe Kong River Basin, Lao PDR
5min Q&A
Chanthaphone Thammavong,
ComFish, WWF Lao PDR
1105 – 1125
Initiatives for improving river basin governance through crosssectoral coordination and dialogue from the Nam Ngum Basin in Lao PDR
5min Q&A
Chanthanet Boulapha, Nam
Ngum River Basin Committee,
Lao PDR
1125 – 1145
Lessons learned from cumulative environmental impact assessments for integrated river basin governance
5min Q&A
Peter‐John Meynell,
Independent Consultant, Lao
PDR
1145 – 1200 Management for flood protection of the Yangtze River Basin
Prof. Wu Daoxi, Changjiang
(Yangtze) Water resources
Commission, Ministry of Water
resources
1200 – 1300 Lunch
1300 – 1315

Introduction to the Panel/Audience Debate

This session will debate the following motion: Existing and planned governance mechanisms at the river basin level ARE sufficient to address the massive changes taking place through water and land use related investments in the Mekong Basin.

Dipak Gyawali, Nepal Water
Conservation Foundation,
Nepal
1315 – 1325 Opening statement: Leader in support of the motion
Nguyen Hong Phuong, Vietnam
National Mekong Committee,
Vietnam
1325 – 1335 Opening statement: Leader against the motion
Phouang Parisak
Pravongviengkham, MAF, Lao
PDR
1425 – 1530 Panel debate begins: Questions presented by facilitator, audience
participation, comments/points made by panelists
All
For Against
Nguyen Hong Phuong, Vietnam
National Mekong Committee,
Vietnam
Phouang Parisak
Pravongviengkham,
MAF, Lao
PDR
Prof. Torkil Jønch Clausen
Water Policy Adviser to the DHI Group (DHI)
Robert Mather, IUCN, Thailand
Dang Thuy Trang, WWF Greater Mekong, Lao PDR Suon Seng, CENTDOR, Cambodia
1430 – 1445 Concluding statements (for or against the motion) Leads
1445 – 1500 Summary Remarks
Dipak Gyawali, Nepal Water
Conservation Foundation,
Nepal
1500 – 1600 EXHIBITION/POSTER SESSION + Tea/Coffee Break
1630 –1700 Return to conference concluding plenary: Conclusion and recommendations

 

Session Coordinators
Kate Lazarus, CPWF, atelazarus2008@gmail.com
Kim Geheb, CPWF, k.geheb@gmail.com
Christoph Muziol, IUCN Lao, christoph.muziol@iucn.org
Ganesh Pangare, IUCN, Ganesh.PANGARE@iucn.org
Lu Xing, M‐POWER, xing.lu.gms@gmail.com

 

The session will focus on the issues, experiences, best practices and future needs for the Mekong Basin and elsewhere in setting in place the economic and financial conditions that will place watersheds at the centre of river basin management, and foster more sustainable, equitable and efficient approaches to integrated water resources management.
Topic 3: Economics & Financing (Conveners: GIZ, ADB)
Part A (THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2011):
Generating Decision‐Support Information
Identifying economic & financial drivers (theme 1); evaluating costs, benefits & trade‐offs (theme 2)
Day 1 Facilitator: Lucy Emerton, Environment Management Group
1300 – 1315 Introduction to the session Ms. Lucy Emerton,
Environment Management Group
1315 – 1345 Opening presentation: The economics of EU water policies – experiences and lessons learned from Europe Dr. Thomas Dworak, Fresh‐
Thoughts Consulting
1345 – 1415 Presentation: Policies, markets and the economics of watershed services – experiences and lessons learned from China Dr. Michael Bennett,
Forest Trends
1415 – 1445 Presentation: Using ecosystem valuation to make the case for watershed investment – the case of the Upper Tuul Basin, Mongolia Mr. Erdenesaikhan
Naidansuren, Environ LLC
1445 ‐ 1500 An introduction to Asia Pacific Forestry Network and on‐going activities Mr. Lu De, APFNet, China
1500 – 1530 Interactive plenary: what kind of economic information and data does it take to influence decision‐makers and decision‐making? Facilitator and participants
1530 – 1600 Discussion and summary of the day’s session Facilitator and participants
1600 – 1630 Tea/Coffee Break
1630 – 1700 Return to conference end‐of‐day plenary: impressions of the day

 

Part B (FRIDAY, 11 MARCH 2011):
Creating Enabling Conditions Setting in place economic incentives (theme 3); Securing financing (theme 4)
Day 2 Facilitator: Genandrialine Peralta (ADB)
1030 – 1100
Presentation: Payments For Watershed Services and Eco‐ Compensation – Practices and Innovations in the People’s Republic of China Mr. Qingfeng Zhang,
EARD/ADB
1100 – 1130
Presentation: Payment for Forest Ecosystem Services in Vietnam and Its Potential As a Sustainable Finance Tool to Achieve Water Management Targets in the GMS
Mr. James Peters,
GMS‐EOC, ADB
1130 – 1200 Presentation: REDD+ and watershed funding Ms. Rowena Soriaga,
ADB Consultant
1200 – 1300 Lunch
1300 – 1330
Presentation: Hydropower revenue‐sharing as a mechanism for watershed financing in Lao PDR
5min Q&A
Dr. Stephen Sparkes,
Theun- Hinboun Power Company Ltd.
1330 – 1415

Presentations: Financing River Basin Committees in Lao PDR Designing Nam Ngum River Basin Fund

Establishing a coordinated financing mechanism for Nam Theun-Nam Kading River Basin

10min Q&A

Mr. Douangchanh Lopaying, Lao Environment Protection Fund

Ms Sonephet Phosalath, Nam Theun-Nam Kading RB Committee and Mr. Paulo Pasicolan, Nam Theun‐Nam Kading River Basin Management Project, Lao PDR

1415 – 1500
Interactive plenary: The public and private sector organizations, communities and individuals all have a role in development and management of basins. How and where can the lessons from the presentations be applied in the Mekong? What are the key recommendations for sustainable financing of water shed management? Facilitator and participants
1500 – 1600 EXHIBITION/POSTER SESSION + Tea/Coffee Break
1600 – 1700 Return to conference concluding plenary: conclusions and recommendations

 

Session Coordinators
Dr. Petra Schill, GIZ petra.schill@giz.de
Lucy Emerton, GIZ Consultant, lucy@environment‐group.org
Ian Makin, ADB imakin@adb.org

Media Contact

For media inquires email huonglien@mrcmekong.org or mrcmedia@mrcmekong.org or view the Contact page here


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