Home to more than 300 million people and some of the most endangered wildlife on the planet, the Greater Mekong region in Southeast Asia is the second most naturally diverse place in the world, second only to the Amazon. This region is also home to the Mekong River which not only sustains much of the wildlife in the area, but also the people. The majority of the population in this region is dependent on the river and its surrounding wetlands to support their way of life. In turn this also means that this population and the vast biodiversity in the region are extremely vulnerable to the economic and environmental outcomes of growing infrastructure.
As one of the nation’s leading think tanks dedicated to building solutions to promote international security, prosperity, and justice, the Stimson Center is working to address the environmental and social impacts along the Mekong river to improve food security, stability and cross-country relations. To help analyze these issues, Blue Raster collaborated with the Stimson Center to create The Mekong Infrastructure Tracker, an interactive Web App to explore the infrastructure boom and its impacts in the Mekong region. With funding provided by USAID, the Mekong Infrastructure Tracker was developed with support from the USAID Mekong Safeguards activity led by The Asia Foundation.
The Mekong Infrastructure Tracker
The tracker contains two dashboards, one showing power generation projects and the other showing road, rail, and waterway infrastructure projects. The data in the tracker visualizes projects by type in combination with data showing threatened species, earthquakes over the last twenty years, armed conflict, ethnicity, watersheds and tributaries that can all be turned on and off depending on user preference.
Additionally, users can filter the projects by a variety of statuses: year of completion, project size, sponsoring country, project type, country, or watershed.
From these filters, the tracker produces a series of charts and graphs to better visualize some of the statistics surrounding these projects which can then be downloaded based on user needs.
The Mekong Infrastructure Tracker allows for transparency of the infrastructural impact on this region, both protecting the diverse and endangered wildlife as well as the livelihoods of millions of people. Explore this new tool today!