The Mekong River and its tributaries are Cambodia’s most abundant source of water, while groundwater supplies serve both domestic uses and irrigation. In spite of the country’s significant water resources, it is clear that groundwater amounts are not only insufficient to support large-scale irrigation, but also in some areas such as southern Cambodia, the resource is heavily laden with arsenic contamination. Water shortages (year-round) were noted by 81% of the households surveyed during the preparation of the country’s National Adaptation Programme of Action (NAPA). While a wide variety of coping mechanisms were noted to deal with these shortages, the NAPA also suggests that these mechanisms may be pushed beyond critical thresholds under a changing climate.
This section provides insights into projected climate change impacts on various hydrological indicators.