|Located in the Hiep Phuoc Industrial Zone, the Hao Duong Leather Joint Stock Company has been discharging untreated wastewater into the Dong Dien River for years.
HCM CITY(VNS) — The HCM City Export Processing and Industrial Zone Authority (HEPZA) has petitioned city authorities to suspend operations and withdraw the license of a leather company for repeatedly discharging untreated wastewater into a local river despite being fined and warned many times.
Located in the Hiep Phuoc Industrial Zone, the Hao Duong Leather Joint Stock Company has been discharging untreated wastewater into the Dong Dien River for years, environment police said last week.
The company, located on Road 1, has had a long history of violations, having been fined nine times since 2007 for discharging untreated wastewater.
Police said the fines did not deter the company from committing its offence again, and it resumed regular discharge of untreated water into the river soon after it was penalised.
The city's People's Committee had fined the company VND340 million ($16,150) and temporarily suspended its operations in September 2012. Earlier this month, the company was fined VND75 million ($3,560).
|The company, located on Road 1, has had a long history of violations, having been fined nine times since 2007 for discharging untreated wastewater.
Most recently, on October 24, the company was caught red-handed by the Environmental Police Department of the Ministry of Public Security as it discharged untreated wastewater into Dong Dien River via two underground pipelines.
Doan Nguyen Thuy Trang, a National Assembly member, told the Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Thursday that the city needed to evaluate the environmental impacts caused by the company, especially the damage caused to the Dong Dien River, and ask the company to compensate.
Le Manh Ha, vice chairman of HCM City's People's Committee, said he would work with HEPZA and other relevant agencies to review all the violations the company has committed over the years.
After the review, the administration would consider stricter measures and punishments, he said.
|Industrial waste is not handled that is contained in the company premises..— Photos giaoduc
The company typically discharged untreated wastewater late at night to escape inspections, police said.
Tran Van Xinh, a worker who operates the wastewater treatment system, told the police that every night at 10 p.m., the company discharged hundreds of cubic metres of untreated wastewater for three to four hours.
According to a HEPZA report, in August 2012, the volume of wastewater generated by the company was 22 times the allowed standard, while its emissions exceeded the limit by 14 times.
HEPZA said it was difficult to discover the company's violations, especially during flood tides, because it had installed an underground pipeline system.
Local residents, meanwhile, had been complaining for years about the stink caused by the dirty water that the company was discharging into the river. — VNS