Target: Sinohydro’s Spokesperson, Wang Zhiping
Goal: Stop hydropower company from building a dam in a critically important forest habitat
The world’s largest hydropower construction company, Sinohydro Corporation (Sinohydro), is aggressively attempting to build a dam in one of the last wild places of Cambodia. The Areng valley, particularly the Cardamom Mountains, is a critical habitat, home to endangered animals and indigenous people, both of which are reliant on the current condition of the area’s forests. If Sinohydro’s attempts to build a dam in the Cardamom Mountains prevail, it could mean game over for too many species and people. With a criminalizing track record, Sinoyhdro must stay far away from the Cardamom Mountains, along with the entire Areng valley.
Sinohydro holds a 50 percent share of the international hydropower market, its reward for aggressively pursuing building in numerous areas around the globe, many of which are critical habitats for a multitude of species. The company has verbally addressed its stance on sound environmental practice, though has yet to show its dedication through dam infrastructure. One dam in particular, the Merowe Dam in Sudan, was responsible for the flooding of local villagers’ homes. Sinohydro failed to address the flooding issue in a timely manner, resulting in global criticism and much deserved skepticism of the company’s practice.
Because of this track record, indigenous people of the Areng valley region are adamantly against the building of a dam within the Cardamom Mountains, which is home to numerous endangered species and critical habitat. Cambodia has already lost 84 percent of its primary forests; its flora, fauna and native people cannot stand to lose any more. The Cardamom Mountains are home to endangered Asian elephants and vulnerable clouded leopards. Both of these species are already severely affected by habitat loss; allowing the dam spells their demise. The Cardamom Mountains are home to a total of 31 endangered species.
Stand up for the Cardamom Mountains and all of its inhabitants. Urge Sinohydro to stop all attempts of building a dam within the Areng valley region.
Dear Wang Zhiping,
As I write this, endangered Asian elephants are fighting to survive in the Cardamom Mountains, where the species’ habitat has been all but completely destroyed. These elephants need what is left of the Cambodian natural forests–16 percent–to regain prosperity. Eighty four percent of Cambodia’s natural forests have already been depleted; Sinohydro is dead set on using the last 16 percent to convert water into electricity. This irresponsible action will cause more harm than good.
Mr. Zhiping, I urge you to convince Sinohydro that its practice is not wanted, nor welcome, in the Cardamom Mountains. Sinohydro’s track record is far from clean. The company has been in the spotlight for harmful environmental practice numerous times before. I understand that in 2011 Sinohydro adopted company-wide environmental standards. Though, by attempting to build a dam in the Cardamom Mountains, the company is not practicing any environmental standard.
Sinohydro must stay out of the Cardamom Mountains. Its presence will be a death sentence for too many species reliant on the health of the area.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: romx via Flickr