Ed Stowasser, Hydraulic Engineer, Huntington District, Dam Safety Production Center recently returned from a trip to Laos in support of United States Indo-Pacific Command, the US Department of State, the US Embassy in Vientiane, and the Lao PDR Ministry of Energy and Mines. He served on a team of subject matter experts to provide technical review and advice to the Government of Laos’ Dam Safety International Advisory team. This effort was part of the Government of Laos’ national dam safety initiative to help the Government of Laos conduct a safety review of foreign owned and operated hydropower facilities throughout the country.
The Government of Laos prioritized enhancing safety of Lao PDR hydropower facilities after the 2018 failure of the Saddle Dam D of the Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy Power Company (PNPC) project in Attapeu Province.
The overarching purpose of the visit was to strengthen collaboration between the US Government and Lao PDR in the area of dam safety, build relationships with Lao PDR MEM personnel, promote United States Indo-Pacific Command LOEs (Enabling of Alliances and Partnerships, and All Hazards) and further the Department of State’s Lower Mekong Initiative Program strategic objectives.
The team consisted of Evan Ting, Senior Program Manager, Security Cooperation, USACE Pacific Ocean Division; Mark Ahlstrom, Senior Risk Advisor, Institute for Water Resources , Risk Management Center; Ed Stowasser, Hydraulic Engineer, USACE, Great Lakes Ohio River Division, Huntington District, Dam Safety Production Center and members of the host nation.