Monday, February 11, 2013

Environmentalists push for Myanmar river conservation commission

Monday, 11 February 2013 12:10 Saw Zin Nyi

Environmentalists have called for the formation of a river conservation commission to to cover all Myanmar rivers following the establishment of the Irrawaddy River Conservation Commission by Mandalay Region Legislative Assembly Committee on February 6.

People living along the Irrawaddy River, the main river that flows through the centre of Myanmar, depend on the river for water. (Photo: Mizzima)

As the Irrawaddy is Myanmar's lifeline and is connected with many other rivers, the conservation of all rivers should be ensured,  said Dewi Thant Zin, an environmentalist.

“The government should form a river commission to conserve all river systems in the country and balance environmental works on rivers with the mining industry,” she said.

Forming the Irrawaddy River Conservation Commission will benefit the whole country and not only scholars and environmentalists but also local people should be included, said U Ohn, vice-president of the Forest Resource and Environment Development Association.

Dewi Thant Zin also said that this commission should work towards permanently halting the Myitsone Dam project.

The environmentalists criticized the lack of conservation works for the country's rivers and they pointed out the danger of the rivers drying up due to unmonitored gold, pebble and gravel mining and the extraction of other natural resources.

A forum for Irrawaddy River Conservation was held at Taw Win Hninsi Hall in Yangon on February 9.
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