The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Mekong Watch

A public version of the Green Mekong Initiative - Citizen proposals for Mekong Basin ecosystem conservation using traditional natural resource management methods

Activity grant

Project Description

The Mekong River flows through six countries and is one of the most biodiverse rivers in the world, but development projects, involving Japan as well as developing countries, are proceeding rapidly and there are concerns that these will cause the deterioration and extinction of river and forest ecosystems. Ensuring sustainable development will require the public, who are not swayed by political interests, to actively advocate and participate in natural resource management. This project aims to create a public version of the Green Mekong Initiative in which citizens propose the form that sustainable natural resource management and ecosystem conservation should take in the basin. First it will survey natural resource usage methods employed in rural areas and turn it into a video. It will then create a platform for the Mekong Basin countries, East Asian NGOs, and researchers to make policy proposals on sustainable regional resource management. As the public version of the Green Mekong Initiative, it will share information, case studies, and experience regarding sustainable resource management, and encourage the creation of community networks in each country in the hope that it will lead to a consensus for setting rules for environmentally considerate development

Marine resources/foodPreservation of surface soil and forestsPreservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2010 Activity Grants
Grant term
3 years
October 2010 - September 2013
Grant amount
12,616,544 yen
Activity region
The Mekong River Basin
Dry season agricultural fields which are used widely across the Mekong Basin when water levels are low

Overview of the Organization

Kenji Fukuda, Representative Director
Kenji Fukuda, Representative Director
Establishment purpose
An important development goal for aid agencies is the elimination of poverty, but there are cases where the negative impact of development, such as forced evictions and environmental destruction, pushes people into poverty. Mekong Watch aims to help the people living in Mekong Basin countries (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and China's Yunnan Province) avoid any adverse effects of development, and enjoy the natural environment in their regions and the abundant ways of life that are rooted in them.
Main areas of activity
Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand, Myanmar, Southwest China, and Japan
3 full-time staff members, 3 part-time staff members, 104 full members
Annual operating budget
32.39 million yen in 2007, 32.55 million yen in 2008, 30.21 million yen in 2009
WEB site
Recent activities
The following activities are being carried out in Mekong Basin countries and Japan:
  • (1) Research: monitoring and researching development initiatives
  • (2) Resources: sharing information and the results of analysis, operating a materials center, holding seminars, publishing, etc.
  • (3) Advocacy: making policy recommendations to governmental and developmental institutions regarding development plans that will have adverse effects on the natural or social environment
  • (4) Local projects: using information exchange and support systems as a means to empower people