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Formosa pollution acted upon

Update: July, 18/2016 - 12:06
Authorities in the central Quảng Trị Province are seeking ways to create new livelihoods for locals living in coastal communes affected by the Formosa pollution from April this year. — Photo thanhnien.vn

QUẢNG TRỊ — Authorities in the central Quảng Trị Province are seeking ways to create new livelihoods for locals living in coastal communes affected by the Formosa pollution from April this year.

Local authorities have assigned staff to 16 affected communes to do SWAT studies in each locality to identify chances of changing local livelihoods from fishing and coastal aquaculture.

According to Nguyễn Đức Chính, chairman of Quảng Trị People’s Committee, staff working in agricultural engineering in public agencies would arrive at the communes to do specific studies to examine soil and climate conditions, so as to suggest a proper choice of plants and husbandry species.

Last week, local authorities gathered at a workshop held for those purposes. Trần Hữu Hùng, chairman of the province’s Vĩnh Linh District, recommended making sandy hills in the district straight topography and investing in watering systems at the same time, aiming to have more soil for agriculture.

Hùng said garlic and peanuts could grow well in such sandy soil. Võ Văn Hưng, director of the local Department of Agriculture and Rural Development assisted in the utilizing of vast sandy areas left uncultivated, saying that communes should develop farms on the sandy land for production of high economic value plants, fish and animals.

The provincial authorities will supply little fish for breeding as well as a maximum amount of VNĐ80 million (US$3,600) each hectare for other costs of setting up a farm.

For short-term assistance to affected fishermen, the province has supplied 22kg of rice per person a month. Local authorities have paid the entire interest for bank loans signed by the firms working in the affected fields.

There were 44,000 families affected by the Formosa pollution in 16 communes. Operations of almost 2,600 fishing boats were halted, creating unemployment for around 3,000 labourers.

Police and environmental officers in Kỳ Anh Town, central Hà Tĩnh Province on Saturday found about 14 tonnes of waste buried at the Kỳ Tân Commune’s landfill and a park managed by the Kỳ Anh Urban Environment Company in Sông Trí Ward. — Photo vnexpress.net

More illegally buried waste found

Police and environmental officers in Kỳ Anh Town, central Hà Tĩnh Province on Saturday found about 14 tonnes of waste buried at the Kỳ Tân Commune’s landfill and a park managed by the Kỳ Anh Urban Environment Company in Sông Trí Ward.

The waste was allegedly disposed of by the Hưng Nghiệp Formosa Hà Tĩnh Steel Company.

Relevant agencies collected and carried away the illegally buried waste to Hà Tĩnh Waste Treatment Ltd Company. Local police continued searching suspected areas where Formosa waste was alleged to be buried. Earlier last week, dozens of tonnes of waste that was also allegedly disposed of by the company were discovered buried in a landfill in the province’s Thiên Cầm Town in Cẩm Xuyên District.

The Formosa company was found burying 100 tonnes of waste at the farm of Kỳ Anh Urban Environment Company’s director, Lê Quang Hòa, in Kỳ Trinh Ward of Kỳ Anh Town.

Hà Tĩnh Province People’s Committee chairman decided to establish a group that is specialised in overseeing the waste treatment and waste discharges by Formosa.

The group, led by vice director of the province’s Environment and Natural Resource Department, Pham Lan Sơn, would inspect and oversee Formosa’s waste release once the company had announced it schemes to operate or maintain its equipment.

The group is allowed to conduct unannounced inspections of the company’s waste treatment processes if found needed.

The group will also oversee and examines the establishment of surveillance equipment for waste water and gases released by the company. The company is required to co-operate timely with relevant agencies and provide data and waste samples for testing. — VNS

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