Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Authorities in the south-central province of Bình Thuận have turned down a proposed titanium mining project, saying that it could contaminate underground water resources and the environment.
The province’s People’s Committee has asked the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to postpone licensing the project in the Hồng Thắng 1 Area of Hoà Thắng Commune in Bắc Bình District.
Last November, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment approved an environmental assessment of the project, invested in by Quang Minh Trade and Investment Joint-Stock company.
However, provincial authorities said the project would overlap with wind-power projects in the area and a master plan to develop tourism and sea sports in the province.
The region is a dry area and does not have enough underground water or irrigation works, according to authorities.
Previously, another project asked for a licence to exploit titanium in the Mũi Đá 2 Area in Thiện Nghiệp Commune in Phan Thiết. But it was also rejected by Bình Thuận Province.
Last July, the office of Bình Thuận’s Party Committee said exploitation of titanium in past years caused serious pollution to water resources and water depletion, especially during the dry season.
The issue has caused strong disagreement among local residents who live in titanium exploitation areas.
Any project to exploit titanium mining must not exploit underground water or water sources from streams, ponds, lakes or pools used for households, agricultural production, breeding or salt-intrusion prevention.
Investors who want to exploit titanium in the province must instead sign a contract with the Bình Thuận Irrigation Work Exploitation Company for Water Supply, according to authorities. — VNS