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The peaceful villages along the Mekong River

ellen denuto | NJ, United States

Childhood friends in their village.

For the 70 million people living in the lower Mekong region, the great 2,500 mile river is the source of life and security. All rivers flow to it, and everyone depends on it and its tributaries for the fish and food they live on.

Laos, Cambodia,Thailand and Vietnam who share the lower Mekong basin are all acutely aware of the threats of climate change cause by neighboring countries. The region has recorded more extreme weather, heavier rain, deeper droughts, bigger floods and much hotter temperatures than ever before- all consistent with UN scientists predictions of global warming.

Plans to build dams and hydroelectric plants may solve one problem, but dams can be river killers. Forest and farmland will be lost, people evicted, fisheries destroyed and create changes in the ecosystem. The erosion caused by these projects may make these countries more prone the the floods and droughts climate change will bring.

Never before has the Mekong river basin been confronted with so many challenges.


Despite a history of being ravaged by war, and threats of a different kind today, the peaceful people residing in the villages along the Mekong River are peaceful, beautiful and welcoming.


Ellen Denuto Photography


"Ever present, the photographer is witness to the world's beauty,pain, injustice and triumph, creating a visual journal of our time."

                                                                Ellen Denuto


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