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We are working directly to help communities, campaigners, and lawyers by organizing opportunities for them to understand and design their own campaigns around Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) processes in the Mekong region. EarthRights and Mekong Legal Network (MLN) have collaborated to produce an original manual for EIA practitioners in six Mekong countries to help government decision-makers, investors, lawyers, and other professionals working on the implementation of EIAs. The result is this unique, practical guide for implementing EIAs in the Mekong, which both EarthRights and MLN are strategically placed to disseminate to relevant EIA stakeholders, especially project-affected communities across the region.

The manual for Environmental Impact Assessment in the Mekong region outlines and analyzes each of the EIA systems in the six Mekong countries, including the common themes and approaches. There is a gap between law on paper and in practice in the Mekong countries. This manual, combined with our integrated approach of training, campaigning, legal advocacy, and networking, is an important step towards closing this gap.

The First Edition is the result of this period of collaboration with MLN. We have tried to ensure accuracy and completeness. However, we also recognize that there is always room for improvement. We welcome any comments, criticisms, or complaints. Our aim is to provide the materials and continue the existing discussion on the value of EIA in the region and how EIA can be improved.

This First Edition is aimed at EIA practitioners, including policymakers, civil society leaders, lawyers, EIA consultants, and project proponents. We hope that, by understanding the legal obligations under national law, all stakeholders will work together to pursue constant improvement in the EIA process across the Mekong region.