Cambodia floods put spotlight on risk of trading lakes for land

Poor planning in rush to develop worsens damage from climate change.

It was late at night when water from the engorged Prek Tnaut River started spilling into Yoeu Phally’s two-story concrete house on the southern fringe of Phnom Penh.

“By 11 p.m., everything was floating,” Phally, a rice farmer, told Nikkei Asia. “We never thought it would rise that high.”

Nearby, monks at Wat Har Pagoda grabbed essentials before building a makeshift dike of sand and plastic outside a temple door in an attempt to keep floodwaters out.

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