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Mineral firms must clean environment

Update: November, 25/2015 - 08:53
Copper exploitation at Sinh Quyen Mine in Lao Cai Province. Keeping the environment clean is a key responsibility of every mineral exploitation company, especially as pollution recently made its way to the top of the government's agenda. — VNA/VNS Photo Trong Dat

HA NOI (VNS) — Keeping the environment clean is a key responsibility of every mineral exploitation company, especially as pollution recently made its way to the top of the government's agenda.

A conference in Ha Noi yesterday discussed companies' social responsibilities in the field of mineral exploitation. The environmental police found 6,500 cases of violations in the field this year, the event heard.

"The mineral exploitation field is a special one, when its activities have an impact on many aspects of people's lives," said Nguyen Quang Vinh, Deputy Secretary General of Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI). "It uses a lot of mineral resources, and might force people to resettle or cause environmental pollution during its operations. Therefore it is vital to raise companies' awareness about their responsibilities when it comes to sustainable development."

Viet Nam Association for Mineral Processing Chairman Nguyen Minh Duong said that no company could survive in a locality without fulfilling its responsibilities to that community.

The latest related incident was a protest by dozens of people at Hoi Loi hamlet in Binh Dinh province against Thanh An Company in September. The titan-exploitation company was accused by locals of polluting water sources, producing thick layers of dust on the residents' houses and blocking roads. Authorities later suspended the company from operation.

Bim Son Cement Co. Deputy Director Nguyen Van Chau agreed that all companies should be responsible for contributing to the community, but the local authorities must also support the enterprises, especially regarding red tape and corruption. — VNS

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