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Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Houaphanh Sees Mass Death of Fish Near Nam Sam 3 Dams Hydropower Plant

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Mass deaths of fish have been reported in Houaphanh Province due to the release of toxic chemicals from the construction site of the Nam Sam 3 Dams Hydropower Plant, according to local authorities.

Natural Resources and Environment Office in Samtay District issued a warning on Monday informing that residents in the district discovered a large amount of dead fish washed up in the river close to the hydropower project.

Mr. Kham Homemixay, the governor of Viengxay District, Houaphanh, said in an interview with Lao National Radio on Tuesday that locals in his district discovered numerous dead fish in the river owing to the hydropower company sanitizing its sites without informing the authorities.

He confirmed that such incidents have never occurred in the district prior to this, and added that the dead fish were a result of the release of toxic chemicals during the sanitation process.

The villagers have released a video that shows various species of fish lying dead near the river shore.

“The fishing community can’t expect to earn a living from Nam Sam river anymore. There will only be some rocks and water in the river from now on. We’ll only consume fish from Vietnam,” says a villager in the video.

The two districts have advised residents to stop catching fish from the Nam Sam River and avoid consuming any fish from the river at the moment.

According to the Lao Ministry of Energy and Mines, the Nam Sam 3 Dams Hydropower Plant is located in rural Samtay District, Houaphanh with an installed capacity of 156 MW and its being developed Phongsupthavy Group.

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