The capital city is preparing to install an additional 20 air-monitoring stations, municipal officials say.— Photo baotainguyenmoitruong.vn
HÀ NỘI — The capital city is preparing to install an additional 20 air-monitoring stations, municipal officials say.
Nine of these will be at major intersections and nine others in crowded urban areas, Nguyễn Trọng Ðông, director of the city’s Department of Natural Resources and Environment, told the Tiền Phong (the Vanguard) newspaper.
Ðông said the installations would assist agencies in issuing timely air-quality warnings to residents.
The move comes after several reports in the mass media blamed city authorities for not issuing any warning to residents despite a sharp plunge in the air-quality for several days.
According to the environment department, there are six air-monitoring stations in the city, but only two - one on Nguyễn Văn Cừ Street and another on Pháo Ðài Láng Street – are operational.
One station was installed in the office of the department on Phạm Văn Đồng Street in 2002, but it has not worked since 2010.
A department official said the machine was outdated, and it was hard to replace faulty parts after it broke down.
Other idle stations are in the Hà Nội University of Science and in the Institute of Environmental Science and Engineering.
Hoàng Dương Tùng, deputy head of the Việt Nam Environment Administration, blamed the situation on a shortage of funds.
He said it costs about VNĐ1 billion (US$44,800) a year to fun an air-monitoring station, but actual funding fell far short of what is needed.
While the installation of 20 additional air-monitoring stations was imperative at the moment, relevant agencies should allocate enough funds for their operation, he said.
Meanwhile, in HCM City, which has a population of over eight million, the municipal administration has been advised to invest VNĐ495 billion ($22.1 million) in establishing 252 air and water quality monitoring stations by 2020. — VNS