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Hà Nội lakes creating a stink in local community

Update: May, 09/2016 - 11:06
At a cost of over VNĐ20 billion (US$889,000) to restore Ngọc Khánh Lake in Ba Đình District of Hà Nội, the lake is said to have again become polluted.— Photo

HÀ NỘI – Though many projects to restore lakes in Hà Nội have been carried out, some lakes are again reported to have become polluted.

At a cost of over VNĐ20 billion (US$889,000) to restore Ngọc Khánh Lake in Ba Đình District of Hà Nội, the lake is said to have again become polluted.

Residents in hundreds of households located around the lake have suffered from severe pollution and foul odors on a daily basis, while the restoration work was not turned over to the local People’s Committee, Tiền Phong (Vanguard) newspaper reported.

The stench from the pollution extends through many rows of houses, which are hundreds of metres from the lake, local residents report.

Nguyễn Thành, living in Kim Mã Street, told the newspaper that residents have had to endure foul odors from the lake during the past month.

"We have repeatedly reported the pollution to the local People’s Committee and the investor, but the situation has not improved and the pollution remains. People have to hold their noses when they go near the lake," Thành said.

He added that the lake was designed separately from the city’s drainage system, but perhaps waste water is being discharged into the lake or there might be leakage of waste water, causing the lake to become contaminated.

Following complaints by local residents, the People’s Committee of Ngọc Khánh District has asked the investor, Hà Nội Drainage Project Management Unit under Hà Nội Construction Department, to determine the cause of the pollution and work to resolve the problem.

Nguyễn Mạnh Hùng, deputy director of the unit, acknowledged that, following the restoration, the city’s drainage system remains separate from the lake.

The water that fills the lake is rain water, not waste water, Hùng added.

According to Hùng, after the restoration, algae appeared in the lake. After four to six weeks, the algae dies and is responsible for the stench in the lake.

Hùng said the project management unit will remove algae from the lake within 7 to 10 days and conduct research to determine how to eliminate the foul odor.

But the local committee did not agree with the proposal by the unit and requested the investor to quickly find the cause of the contamination and eliminate it within days.

"Pollution in Ngọc Khánh Lake is very serious, causing an unpleasant environment for the local people. By all means, the project management unit must take measures to deal with the pollution of the lake in the next few days," said Nguyễn Minh Tú, head of the committee.

The committee will not receive permission to proceed with restoration work if the contamination has not been resolved, Tú added. — VNS




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