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International Financial Institutions: Asian Development Bank
 Asian Development Bank

The ADB: Creating Poverty in Asia

  ADB Protests

Protests against the Asian Development Bank

The Asian Development Bank has been the focus of intense protests for its support of destructive projects and policies. Since its founding in 1966, the Bank has promoted a development model based on rapid economic growth and free market reforms which has failed to recognize the value of subsistence livelihoods and their contributions to national economies.

As a result of ADB policies and projects, local communities and indigenous peoples have been forcibly evicted from their homes and land. Commercial logging has deforested vast areas. People who once relied on their rivers for sustenance now face diminishing fisheries and a future of doubt. The poorest communities have been most severely affected by development projects‚ often paying the price for, but completely missing out on, benefits accrued from economic development of their countries. Meanwhile, ADB loans have added to the staggering debt burden of borrowing countries, while lining the pockets of project proponents and government officials.

For the last several years, IRN has challenged ADB support for large dams in the Mekong Basin. Bank–financed studies have identified the potential for over fifty large and medium scale dams in the Basin. IRN is currently working to halt ADB financing of the Nam Theun 2 hydropower project in Laos and to pressure the ADB to ensure that people affected by the Theun–Hinboun, Nam Leuk and Nam Song hydropower projects receive just compensation. IRN is also monitoring the Mekong Power Grid and is working with a coalition of NGOs to strengthen the ADB’s safeguard policies.

This site presents major reports and documents on the ADB and dams, and other news and updates about relevant ADB projects and policy changes.

  news & updates  
NGOs Urge Asian Development Bank to Reject Support for Hydropower Projects in Burma
Groups concerned with inclusion of Tasang Dam in power grid master plan
ADB Plan Supports a Dozen More Dams for the Mekong
IRN press release on Power Grid Master Plan
Whose Mekong Is It?  Communities tell Greater Mekong Subregion leaders:
Enough broken promises! Listen to the people, not the ADB! Press release from the Oxfam Mekong Initiative’s Partners’ Forum on the ADB’s Greater Mekong Subregion program
Read IRN’s Submission to the ADB
encouraging them to adopt World Commission on Dams Recommendations
  reports & documents  
Dams in Laos: On the Record (PDF)
Contains selected quotes from official ADB documents and consultants’ reports pointing to some of the ongoing problems with hydropower development in Laos.
The Legacy of Hydro in Laos (PDF)
Hydropower projects developed over the past decade in Laos have left a legacy of destroyed livelihoods and damaged ecosystems. This paper documents the unresolved social and environmental impacts of five different dam projects in Laos.
Sizing Up the Grid: How the Mekong Power Grid Compares Against the Policies of the Asian Development Bank
Report reveals how the Mekong Power Grid violates ADB policies. Click here for press release.
Trading Away the Future: The Mekong Power Grid
IRN briefing paper outlines threats posed by the ADB–supported power grid, which would facilitate dam construction throughout mainland Southeast Asia. (PDF)
River of Controversy: Damming and Blasting the Mekong Briefing Kit
Development of the Mekong basin threatens to undermine the livelihoods of millions in Southeast Asia.
Additional Information

For further information, please contact:

    Peter Bosshard, International Rivers Network
    E–mail: peter@irn.org
    Phone: +1 510–848–1155