|Part of the dyke system along the Day River in northern Nam Dinh Province's Y Yen District risks breaking due to overuse of nearby land for brick production.— Photo Vietnam+
NAM DINH (VNS)— Part of the dyke system along the Day River in northern Nam Dinh Province's Y Yen District risks breaking due to overuse of nearby land for brick production.
However, local authorities have not been able to stop brick makers from using the land – causing fear and concern among local residents, who remember the losses caused by the dyke breaking in 1971 and 1985.
Nearly 10 hectares of riverside land in the district's Yen Dong Commune belongs to the public. Under management of the commune People's Committee, it has been offered for rent since 2006 to contribute to the local budget.
The first renter –Tran Dinh Thap, of the district's Yen Phuc Commune – was allowed to dig down up to one metre and 25 metres away from the dyke foot in order to take soil to produce bricks or grow aquaculture products.
Since 2007, Thap and three other people have had permission from the province's Department of Natural Resources and Environment to exploit clay.
However, three years ago, because of ineffective business, Thap transferred the land to other people from Ha Noi's Phu Xuyen District, who have continued the over-exploitation and even built kilns.
Ha Tat Tien, a 58-year-old resident, said he and others used to grow rice and other crops by the river, but the land had been ruined by the brickmakers.
"They even encroached into the dyke," he said.
The smoke and dirt released from brick kilns, he added, prevented local residents from growing plants in the whole area.
Chairman of Yen Dong Commune People's Committee Dao Tien Thinh said that this over-exploitation of land violated the Land Law and Dyke Protection Law.
The commune had recorded many violations and frequently asked renters to end production, he said.
However, the authorities could not manage to meet the current renter –who is from Ha Noi – to address the problem, he said.
The land renting contract expired in 2011. But at that time, the renters gained a new one bearing the signature of deputy chairman of the commune People's Committee Bui Quang Nhan.
Last year, district inspectors found that brick makers had exploited over 14,500 sq.m of land without legal permission, including 2,300 sq.m of an area intended to ensure the safety of the dyke system.
Violators were asked to stop exploitation and tackle the consequences but no move has yet been made in this direction. — VNS