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Seasonal Flood Situation Report for the Lower Mekong River Basin, Covering the period from 1st June to 31st October 2015

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Situation Report
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1. INTRODUCTION

While annual floods have the potential to wreak havoc on unprepared communities, spoil crops and endanger food security, whereas they play a vital role in agriculture, while the annual flood pulses also contribute to the world-renowned productivity of the Mekong freshwater fisheries.

As part of the implementation of the Strategic Plan 2011-2015, the MRC Flood Management and Mitigation Programme (FMMP), like in previous years, supported the Regional Flood Management and Mitigating Centre (RFMMC)’s Mission by minimising the negative flood-related impacts while preserving the environmental and other benefits. The Phnom Penh-based RFMMC has helped the four MRC Member Countries to reduce negative impacts of flooding through the dissemination of daily flood forecasting and (when applicable) early warning information.

During the 2015 flood season, from June to October, the RFMMC issued daily flood forecasts and early warning information during critical situations. Rainfall and/or water level data were collected from 169 hydro-meteorological stations (these include manual and automatic stations, like the HYCOS and AHNIP stations) and were used to forecast water levels at 22 mainstream stations (forecast points) on the Mekong River system. The FMMP communicates these daily bulletins by fax, email, and on the flood pages of the MRC website to the National Mekong Committees, Non-Governmental Organisations, the media and, most importantly, the general public. The RFMMC’s daily information provides government agencies and communities in Lao PDR, Cambodia, Thailand and Viet Nam with advanced notice of rising and falling water levels. Through online postings, radio communication, dissemination of guidebooks as well as workshops, FMMP strives to reach a wide audience throughout the entire Mekong Basin.

This report is produced by the RFMMC’s flood forecasting team in analysing and verifying the summaries of rainfall and water levels, the general behaviour of the flood situation, the accuracy and limitation of flood forecast operation for the Lower Mekong Basin (LMB) in the 2015 flood season.

Note: The following definition is used in the different parts of the Lower Mekong Basin:

  • Upper part : from Chiang Saen to Paksane
  • Middle part : from Nakhon Phanom to Pakse
  • Downstream part : from Stung Treng to Tan Chau / Chau Doc

The downstream part is further subdivided into three sections:

  • Section a: from Stung Treng to Kampong Cham
  • Section b: from Phnom Penh Bassac Chaktomuk / Phnom Penh Port to Neak Luong
  • Section c: At Tan Chau and at Chau Doc

The data used for the analyses in this report is including:

  • Manually observed rainfall and water level data refer to mainstream stations only.
  • Manually observed daily data that is transferred by Line Agencies via the Hydmet tool during the flood season, and;
  • The Long Term Average (LTA), which is calculated based on the observed water levels during the period 2000 - 2015.