The Mekong River, a lifeline stretching virtually 5,000 kilometres from the Tibetan Plateau to the South China Sea, is below grave threat. A latest report reveals that unsustainable improvement is severely endangering the river’s well being and diverse fish populations. Consequently, one-fifth of the fish species on this Southeast Asian lifeline are getting ready to extinction.

The Mekong River performs a significant function within the farming and fishing actions of hundreds of thousands of people throughout six nations: China, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Nevertheless, the river and its fish populations are being threatened by habitat loss, agricultural conversion of wetlands, unchecked sand mining, introduction of invasive species, escalating local weather change and the fragmentation attributable to hydropower dams.

“Essentially the most speedy and doubtlessly escalating threat is hydropower improvement,” acknowledged Zeb Hogan, a fish biologist who leads the USAID Wonders of the Mekong, one of many teams concerned within the report.

The report, a mixed effort by the World Wildlife Fund and 25 international marine and wildlife conservation teams, identified that dams disrupt the movement of the Mekong River, alter water high quality and impede fish migration.

Hydroelectric dams constructed by China have restricted the supply of important vitamins to tens of hundreds of farms within the Mekong River Delta by blocking a lot of the sediment. The report, titled The Mekong’s Forgotten Fishes, states that near 19% of the 1,148 or extra fish species within the Mekong are on a course in direction of extinction. The precise quantity might be increased because the conservation standing of 38% of the species stays unsure because of inadequate information.

The species threatened with extinction embody 18 critically endangered species as per the Worldwide Union for Conservation of Nature. These embody two of the world’s largest catfish, the world’s largest carp and the enormous freshwater stingray. The Mekong River is house to among the largest and rarest fish species on this planet, Hogan stated.

The depletion of fish within the Mekong, which contributes to over 15% of the worldwide inland catch yielding over US$11 billion yearly, might jeopardise meals safety for at the very least 40 million folks within the Decrease Mekong basin who depend on the river for his or her livelihood, in response to the report.

Nevertheless, Hogan believes it’s not too late to reverse the opposed impacts on the fish inhabitants. If we take collective motion to develop the river sustainably, there’s nonetheless hope, reported Bangkok Put up.

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