Illustrative image (Source: VNA)

Da Nang (VNA) – A multilateral talk on sustainable hydropower in the central and Central Highlands regions took place in the central city of Da Nang on December 6.

The conference gathered state officials, policy-makers, builders, social organisations, media agencies and residents.

Participating experts and researchers talked about the pros and cons of local hydropower projects built between 2013 and 2016, presenting several surveys on the impacts of hydropower plants on Vu Gia-Thu Bon river system on Dai Hong Commune in Quang Nam’s Dai Loc District, and of the Buon Kuoop plant on Ea Tung and Drai Villages in Dak Lak’s Kroong An District.

The Vietnam Electricity (EVN) estimated that by 2015, the country, home to over 2,371 rivers, had used up more than 80 percent of its hydropower potential estimated at 35,000 MW. These electricity projects have contributed to ensuring energy security and economic growth. However, they also caused negative environmental and social impacts.

Dang Ngoc Quang, a consultant at the Vietnam River Network (VRN), recommended measures to address hydropower problems need to involve affected residents, who in turn should be enable to access legal services and technical support.

The VRN research group highlighted the necessity of improving residents’ skills and legal knowledge in sending feedback and petitions on compensation and relocation to relevant parties, such as provincial authorities and construction companies./.