Articles | Volume 22, issue 3
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 22, 967–983, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-22-967-2022
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 22, 967–983, 2022
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhess-22-967-2022
Research article
22 Mar 2022
Research article | 22 Mar 2022

The Cambodian Mekong floodplain under future development plans and climate change

Alexander J. Horton et al.

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Cited articles

Adamson, P. T., Rutherfurd, I. D., Peel, M. C., and Conlan, I. A.: The Hydrology of the Mekong River, chap. 4, edited by: Campbell, I. C., The Mekong Academic Press, San Diego, 53–76, 2009. 
Arias, M. E., Cochrane, T. A., Piman, T., Kummu, M., Caruso, B. S., and Killeen, T. J.: Quantifying changes in flooding and habitats in the Tonle Sap Lake (Cambodia) caused by water infrastructure development and climate change in the Mekong Basin, Environ. Manage., 112, 53–66, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvman.2012.07.003, 2012. 
Arias, M. E., Cochrane, T. A., Kummu, M., Lauri, H., Holtgrieve, G. W., Koponen, J., and Piman, T.: Impacts of hydropower and climate change on drivers of ecological productivity of Southeast Asia's most important wetland, Ecol. Modell., 272, 252–263, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ecolmodel.2013.10.015, 2014. 
Benaman, J., Shoemaker, C. A., and Haith, D. A.: Calibration and Validation of Soil and Water Assessment Tool on an Agricultural Watershed in Upstate New York, J. Hydrol. Eng., 10, 363–374, https://doi.org/10.1061/(ASCE)1084-0699(2005)10:5(363), 2005. 
Boretti, A.: Implications on food production of the changing water cycle in the Vietnamese Mekong Delta, Glob. Ecol. Conserv., 22, e00989, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.gecco.2020.e00989, 2020. 
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Short summary
We studied the cumulative impact of future development and climate change scenarios on discharge and floods in the Cambodian Mekong floodplain. We found that hydropower impacts dominate, acting in opposition to climate change impacts to drastically increase dry season flows and reduce wet season flows even when considering the higher RCP8.5 level. The consequent reduction in flood extent and duration may reduce regional flood risk but may also have negative impacts on floodplain productivity.
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