Cambodian Journalists Learn To Report on Impact of Development on Mekong River and Communities 



Twenty Cambodian journalists from six Mekong provinces and Phnom Penh attended a three-day workshop in Kratie province on July 14-16, 2016, to learn how to better report on the impact caused by hydroelectric dams and other development projects on the Mekong River and communities whose livelihoods depend on the river.
This second workshop was organized by the Cambodia Institute for Media Studies with funding from USAID through the Mekong Partnership for the Environment (MPE). The first workshop on the same topic was held in Stung Treng province on May 26-28 and was participated by 20 different journalists from Cambodia and four journalists from Thailand, Myanmar and Vietnam.
The Kratie training workshop was divided into two parts, including journalism skills learning and a field visit to communities affected by dam construction and development projects along the Mekong River and its tributes.
The participants spent the first and third day of the workshop with a government EIA specialist and an NGO fishery guest speaker discussing the environmental impact and EIA safeguard policies. On the same days, they also met with Cambodian media trainers to learn how to write more effective stories on environmental impact. During the field visit on the second day, the journalists met with commune officials and community representatives to discuss the imminent impact on Mekong dolphins, fishery and local villagers caused by dam constriction and other development projects.
The workshop further discussed the setting up of the Cambodian Environmental Journalists Network (CEJN) with some journalists beginning to set up the Whatsapp group to share stories.
Several stories have been produced based on the training workshop and a story was broadcast by a local TV on the impact on the Mekong dolphins and tourist operators and businesspeople at the tourism site in Sambo district.