Over 3km of Eroded Riverbank Slated for Protection

Erosion on a bank of the Murray River.

The repair of riverbank erosion is a priority for next year, with 3,140 metres of the Mekong and its branches in three provinces to be shored up, a leading official has announced.

Minister of Public Works and Transport Dr Bounchan Sinthavong told National Assembly members about the riverbank protection at the legislature’s ongoing session.

Dr Bounchan said the priority work would be carried out at four points to tackle erosion and shore up 3,140 metres of riverbank in the provinces of Borikh amxay, Xayaboury and Bokeo.

“About 63.6 billion kip will be spent on riverbank protection,” he said.

Borikhamxay province plans to protect an 820 metre section along the Mekong at the border area in Nakhaneua village, Thaphabath district, and another 700 metres near Phabathphonson village in the same district.

A 1,100 metre section of the Heuang River in Kaenthao district, Xayaboury province, is also slated for repair.

And a 520 metre section of the Mekong River embankment in Tonpheung district, Bokeo province, will be built up following erosion.

A Borikhamxay provincial official, Mr Keoudone Luangsouvannavong, told Vientiane Times on Tuesday that the Mekong riverbank in Nakhaneua and Phabathphonsan villages began to crumble in 2012.

These riverbanks have eroded excessively each year since because of flooding.

Earlier this month Borikhamxay province invited officials from various ministries to visit the province to witness the erosion at the Pakxan-Bueng Kan international border between Laos and Thailand.

A section of fencing at the Pakxan border has already disappeared into the Mekong because of erosion.

Borikhamxay surveyed 197 kilometres along the Mekong in the districts of Pakxan, Thaphabath and Pakkading which revealed that a 79km section of riverbank was in need of an embankment.

Ac cording to the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, the repairs along the Mekong and other rivers would cost about 4,369 billion kip.

Some 289km of riverbank along the Mekong in various parts of the country and along the Heuang River in Xayaboury province have crumbled, and about 120km has been shored up with embankments.

Dr Bounchan said there was now about 168k m of riverbank that was suffering from erosion.

Source: Vientiane Times