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Environmental destruction is a crime: Vietnamese industry minister

Friday, October 07, 2016, 18:09 GMT+7

Vietnamese Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh says pollution is a crime against the environment and calls on all major corporations to commit themselves towards environmental protection during their operations.

Power plant, coal mine, and mineral mine developers across Vietnam gathered on Thursday afternoon for a meeting to address environmental issues regarding their operations.

Following Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper posts on the increasing number of coal-fired power factories in the country, a matter of serious public concern in Vietnam, Minister Anh ordered that businesses resolve all matters related to the rising risk of pollution caused by these operations.

Vietnam currently operates 19 fossil-fueled power plants and plans to raise that number to 31 by the year 2020, and to 51 by 2030, placing the Red River Delta and Mekong Delta regions at serious risk of contamination.

The official ordered leaders from major corporations and enterprises to pledge against “trading the environment for their projects,” asserting that factories which violate environmental protection regulations and negatively impact the well being of local resident will be shut down.

A joint delegation between the Ministry of Industry and Trade and Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is scheduled to start a comprehensive inspection thermal power stations in the country that pose high risks of contamination.

All procedures must be carried out and existing issues resolved at all costs, Minister Anh said, reiterating that an effective exploitation of natural resources had to take environmental preservation into account.

“Environment destruction is a crime,” the official stated, “we must not lose the trust of the Vietnamese people.”

According to reports at the meeting, many businesses in the industry and trade sector don’t meet environmental protection standards, while a few others have not been permitted to continue their exploitation of resources.

Several facilities have yet to establish proper systems for wastewater treatment and dust control, creating immense threats on the surrounding atmosphere.

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