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Harmful industrial waste trade poses threat

Update: July, 28/2014 - 09:09
Hazardous waste, however is still being sold in the southern province of Dong Nai.— Photo danviet

DONG NAI (VNS) — Hazardous industrial waste must be destroyed and has been banned from being sold for fear of heath risks and environmental pollution.

Hazardous waste, however is still being sold in the southern province of Dong Nai.

Hazardous industrial waste trading centres can be found on some streets, such as Nguyen Ai Quoc, Bui Van Hoa and along National Highway 1A, according to a report in the Nong thon Ngay nay (Countryside Today) newspaper.

Popular waste being sold includes plastic cans and containers that once contained chemical substances from companies and factories. These containers have a capacity of between 10-1,000 litres and are often sold to local consumers, who later use the containers to store water for daily use or agricultural production.

Under current regulations, these containers must be collected and treated by authorised agencies with proper treatment technologies to ensure they will not spread harmful chemicals after treatment.

However, the owner of a shop selling these containers on Nguyen Ai Quoc street told the newspaper that she cleaned all containers with normal detergent or washing powders, and they were now safe to use for water storage.

According to a representative from the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment, hazardous industrial waste, including different types of packing or wrapping, could cause health risks for consumers, such as cancer, gene mutation or affecting the users' reproductive health.

The department regularly warns local residents not to purchase or use any types of hazardous industrial waste to store water or food.

Further, the department's deputy director, Nguyen Ngoc Thuong, said the provincial People's Committee has urged authorities in the districts of Long Thanh, Nhon Trach, Trang Bom and Bien Hoa City to regularly inspect waste collection and trade facilities and resolutely suspend or remove facilities without licenses or environmental protection documents.

The department would also increase inspections and tighten controls over industrial factories, waste collectors and transporters to prevent the spread of hazardous industrial waste, he said. — VNS

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