Saigoneer editor-in-chief Michael Tatarski explains why the water of the Mekong is brown:
“If in the future all of the planned Mekong River dams are built, 96% of sediment will be trapped, while 50% is already trapped by the cascade dams in China,” he adds. “If this happens, the coastal water will become transparent, while right now it’s chocolate-colored for 30 kilometers from shore.”
And why that’s a good thing:
Additionally, the loss of sediment would not only starve sea life of nutrients, but would also expose the delta to dangerous storms and waves, as sediment-filled water is heavier than open ocean water and absorbs wave energy.