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Tien Giang cracks down on mining of sand

Update: July, 22/2015 - 16:46
a ship carrying sand exploitation on Tien River. — Photo

TIEN GIANG (VNS) — The Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta province of Tien Giang has initiated tough measures to control mining of sand in the river.

The measures are aimed at preventing landslides on the riverbanks and protecting the aquaculture resources as well lives and assets of local people who live alongside rivers.

The provincial authority has temporarily stopped the issue and extension of licences for mining of sand, so as to review the situation on the Tien River.

The province will also co-operate with the neighbouring localities of Long An Province and HCM City to prepare regulations on aquaculture and mineral resources, as well as to apply surveillance measures to discover and handle violations, and prevent illegal sand exploitation.

Moreover, Tien Giang Province will review and revise some regulations on mineral exploitation and transportation in the province.

Awareness programmes about natural resources and environment protection will be also promoted among the people.

At present, only two businesses are permitted to mine sand from Tien River.

The amount of sand being exploited has dramatically decreased. In 2012, the businesses exploited more than 55,000cu.m of sand, while in 2014, the yield was about 7,000cu.m, as compared to 5,000cu.m this year.

In fact, mining of sand has brought huge socio-economic benefits to the province. However, there were some issues too.

Activities that did not seriously comply with regulations caused changes in river currents and soil erosion of the river banks.

So far, the province has allocated four large areas for sand exploitation on the River Tien in the districts of Cai Be and Cai Lay.

The local authority also regulates that the evaluation of applications for sand exploitation work must take account of environmental impact assessment and safe water traffic.

The exploitation work must be carried out at least 20m away from the river banks.

Despites the tough regulations, illegal mining of sand continues in the river. — VNS

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