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Tests clear refinery of pollution claims

Update: April, 05/2014 - 09:01

QUANG NGAI (VNS)  — Wastewater and gas discharged from the Dung Quat Oil Refinery in the central province of Quang Ngai did not cause environmental pollution, a senior official from the company claimed in response to a barrage of complaints from local people.

In the past few days, many people living near the refinery in Binh Tri Commune, Binh Son District complained that the plant discharged untreated wastewater into their rice fields and noxious gas into the atmosphere, causing environmental pollution and affecting their health.

The local authorities required the BSR to provide environmental impact assessment results in response to these complaints.

Pham Van Chat, Deputy Director General of Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical Company Ltd Co (BSR), which owns and operates Dung Quat Oil Refinery, said at a meeting held between local authorities, company representatives and local people on Thursday that the company had done nothing wrong. Tests conducted by the Dung Quat Economic Zone Management Board's Centre for Environmental Monitoring periodically from early 2014 to April 3 showed that the amount of industrial exhaust fumes released from the refinery were all lower than the maximum permitted level, according to the official. For example, the amount of SO2 released from the oil refinery reached between 66.4-82.1 micrograms per cu.m of atmosphere, lower than the maximum allowed level of 350 micrograms per cu.m.

The tests also showed that wastewater was not released into local people's rice fields as they complained, according to Chat, who said all wastewater was treated at the company's waste treatment facility and discharged into nearby Viet Thanh Bay following approval from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.

He further explained that the company had installed devices to keep exhaust fumes under control.

A representative from the provincial Department of Natural Resources and Environment said local authorised agencies had tested samples of wastewater and gas released from the oil refinery following the barrage of complaints. While they met requirements, the refinery was obligated to inspect its waste treatment facilities regularly to ensure that they met national standards, he said. — VNS


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