From the Three Gorges to Gibe III: the Great Dam Builders Whac-a-Mole

Dai Qing and Ikal Angelei
Two inspiring river activists from China and Kenya, came together for a public event in San Francisco. With the Three Gorges and the Gibe III dams, Dai Qing and Ikal Angelei have taken on some of the most destructive development projects of the past 20 years. Through our global grassroots network, they have engaged in what may be called the great dam builders’ Whac-a-Mole.

263 NGOs Call on Mekong Governments to Cancel Plans for Xayaburi Dam

Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Bankgkok, Thailand – 263 non-governmental organizations from 51 countries submitted a letter yesterday urging the Prime Ministers of Lao PDR and Thailand to immediately cancel the proposed Xayaburi Dam on the Mekong River’s mainstream in Northern Laos.   The letter urges the Government of Lao PDR to cancel its plans to build the project and for the Thai Government to end plans to import its electricity.  The letter is submitted in advance of the Mekong River Commission’s (MRC) 33rd Joint Committee Meeting, scheduled for 25-26 March in Sihanoukville, Cambodia, where the four member c

Ikal Angelei, Friends of Lake Turkana, Kenya

websites: Friends of Lake Turkana and Turkana Basin Institute email: Personal background Ms. Ikal Angelei is Program Coordinator for Friends of Lake Turkana, Kenya, which works to stop plans to build the Gibe 3 Dam in Ethiopia. NGO, movement or network Friends of Lake Turkana (FoLT) is a community association formed in 2008 in response to threats to the viability of the world's largest permanent desert lake in northwestern Kenya and south-western Ethiopia. FoLT's membership consists of people from the Lake Turkana region, where an estimated 300,00

Pianporn Deetes, Living Rivers Siam, Thailand

Tuesday, March 10, 2009
website email: cell: +66 81 422 0111 Personal background Ms. Pianporn Deetes is the coordinator of the Living River Siam and has been working on transboundary environmental issues in Mainland Southeast Asia for over seven years. NGO, movement or network Living River Siam is a campaign-based organization, working to support local community rights to their rivers, and to oppose threats to rivers and riverine ecosystems in Thailand, the Mekong, and Salween River Basins, such as large dams and water diversion projects. Living River Siam also coordinates the Thai da

Mining, Dams and Repression in Gabon

Marc Ona Essangui
Marc Ona Essangui Abundant natural resources make Gabon one of Africa’s richest nations. The country’s wealth fills the pockets of a small clique, while the people live in misery. Gabon’s strong man Omar Bongo recently imprisoned five civil society partners of International Rivers to stifle calls for change. Gabon is rich in natural resources such as oil, iron, timber, and hydropower. These resources are not a blessing, but a curse. In terms of its per-capita income, Gabon is richer than Bulgaria, Chile, Malaysia or Russia. Yet oil companies, French colonial interests and a small n


We have received a lot of positive feedback to the launch of my new blog on international financial institutions and the environment. Encouraging comments have reached us from NGOs in China, Africa and other parts of the world, academics, journalists, government and World Bank officials. The propaganda apparatus of the Chinese government does not seem to appreciate the new blog. Last week, the International Rivers website was for the first time blocked in China. It is the role of civil society to promote international social and environmental standards, and to hold powerful actors from all

The World Bank and Civil Society: Forward to the Past?

Saturday, November 6, 2004
A Review of The World’s Banker, A Story of Failed States, Financial Crises, and the Wealth and Poverty of Nations by Sebastian Mallaby (Penguin Press, October 2004)In The World’s Banker, Sebastian Mallaby presents an insightful account of the World Bank during the presidency of James Wolfensohn. The author loses his cool when he discusses the role of advocacy groups that campaign against Bank projects, substituting research with polemic and a substantive debate with catchy slogans. Sebastian Mallaby’s preferred method of work is the interview. For his new book, The World’s Banker, the

Civil Society Groups Condemn Clampdown for Singapore World Bank-IMF Meetings

Friday, September 8, 2006
Civil society groups worldwide have reacted angrily to the Singaporean government’s ban on up to 20 delegates who plan to attend Bank/Fund annual meetings there next week. They have also condemned the pressure apparently brought by Singapore’s government on the administration of neighboring Batam, Indonesia,where a major civil society conference will be held next week. Yesterday it appeared that permission would not be granted for the conference, but today, following an international outcry, official sources in Jakarta confirmed it could go ahead. Three years ago when the IMF & World B

Request for Immediate Action Against Civil Society Ban for Annual Meetings in Singapore

Monday, September 11, 2006
Dear Messrs. Wolfowitz and de Rato, We are writing to express our dismay at the World Bank’s and IMF’s reaction to the Singaporean government’s ban on about 20 representatives from five NGOs from attending the upcoming Annual Meetings. We are also dismayed at your institution’s reactions to the pressure exerted by Singapore on the Indonesian authorities to prevent civil society activities on Batam island. We understand that these steps by the Singaporean government violate the Memorandun of Understanding signed with the World Bank and the IMF concerning the organisation of the Annual M

Ugandan NGO Responds to Mallaby

Wednesday, November 24, 2004
An Interview with NAPE by Terri Hathaway, International Rivers Background In several recent publications, including his recently published book The World’s Banker and an article in Foreign Policy entitled "NGOs: Fighting Poverty, Hurting the Poor," author Sebastian Mallaby identified the Ugandan NGO, National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE), as an example of NGOs that do more harm than good for development. NAPE was instrumental in halting the proposed Bujagali Dam, a project found to be an economically poor deal for the government, as well as having social and environme


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