Representatives from the International Commission for the Hydrology of the Rhine basin (CHR), the International Commission for protection of the Rhine (ICPR) and the Mekong River Commission (MRC), government representatives, experts and scientists met on 8-9 May 2014 in Koblenz, Germany, at the 1st Rhine/Mekong Symposium under the theme “Climate Change and its Influence on Water and Related Sectors”. The meeting enables the river basin organizations to share knowledge, understanding and challenges on the different and common issues as well as to discuss areas for potential cooperation.
FutureWater participated in the meeting because of their active involvement over the last years in studies in the Mekong region, and their collaboration with the MRC. Currently, a “Status of the Climate” report is being prepared, which should pave the way for the climate adaption strategy to follow and action plans to be carried out in the Mekong basin. Two recent studies by FutureWater on baseline climate dataset preparation and food security are input to this process.
The participants of the symposium concluded that the two basins share common challenges which provide a basis for potential cooperation amongst their river basin organizations. During the following months, this collaboration should take shape, so both basins will start working together on the key common issues related to climate change. A conclusion statement was issued summarising the results, and outlining areas for further cooperation.