|When the tide goes out, the waste is swept away, generating a serious problem for the maritime ecosystem. The sea water has become murky and smells bad.— Photo giadinh
THANH HOA (VNS)— Rubbish discarded by local residents in Ngu Loc commune in the central province of Thanh Hoa has caused serious pollution to the local environment.
The commune, covering an area of less than one square kilometer, has nearly 17,000 inhabitants, one of the largest population densities in the country. However, there are no garbage dumps.
"Because there are no dumps, the rubbish is disposed on the seashore, polluting the beach and residential quarters, and affecting the locals' health," Ngu said.
Over one thousand cubic metres of rubbish has piled up along a 1.2km beach where people catch fish and shrimp every day.
When the tide goes out, the waste is swept away, generating a serious problem for the maritime ecosystem. The sea water has become murky and smells bad.
Local people do not have land to cultivate, so they rely on the sea to make a living, but a large volume of nylon bags, polystyrene boxes and solids are discarded in the process.
Nearly seven tonnes of rubbish are discharged by local residents every day, according to the communal People's Committee chairman, Nguyen Van Ngu.
As the population increases, environmental problems have become more and more serious, which go beyond the capacity of local authorities.
The communal People's Committee has urged higher authorities to take action to stop the pollution, and organise clean up programmes.
In 2010, provincial authorities approved a project to set up a waste treatment factory in neighbouring Minh Loc Commune with total investment of VND 9 billion (US$428,000).
News of the project raised local people's hopes, who were eager for a clean living environment. However, the factory has not been built.
"To help local people escape from the waste, the communal People's Committee has asked local households to contribute VND 119 million ($5,600) each month to hire a truck to collect and take the waste to a dump for treatment each day," Ngu said.
"However, that money is not enough to collect, transport and treat the waste currently threatening the seashore and embankment," Ngu added. — VNS