Laos meets with neighboring countries for $3.8 billion Mekong River dam project

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By Kelsey Lund

Laos met with three other countries sharing the lower portion of the Mekong River seeking their approval for a proposed $3.8 billion Mekong River dam project that environmentalists say threatens food security, fisheries and farmland, Reuters reported.

The four countries, Laos, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia, could not agree about the construction of the first dam in the lower Mekong region, Reuters reported.

About 60 million people rely on the lower Mekong River for food, water and transportation, and environmentalists fear these people's lives could be threatened by the dam, Bloomberg reported.

The four countries had to meet based on a 1995 agreement stating the countries must consult one another before building power plants on the Mekong River, Bloomberg reported.

Laos still has the final say in building the dam, which has the potential to push some fish into extinction, relocate villages, and cost the agriculture industry of Thailand and Laos $500 million per year, Reuters reported.

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