Coal dump site threatens livelihoods of villagers

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Báo Dân Trí English - 31 month(s) ago 7 readings

Coal dump site threatens livelihoods of villagers

Landslides and pollution have become a major threat to the people living around the dump site of Phan Me Coal Mine in Thai Nguyen Province.

The dump site

On April 15 there was a landslide at the dump site of Phan Me Coal Mine, a subsidiary of Thai Nguyen Iron and Steel Corporation, which buried 10 households of Khuon 1 Village, in Dai Tu District.

During the search for the missing victims, people living in Khuon 3 Village noticed more cracks that give a warning possibilities of further landslides.

Most of the cracks were about 20 centimetres wide and dozens of metres deep. The area has been barricaded by Phan Me guards.

Vuong Van Bay, Head of Khuon 3 Village said, "When the landslide in Khuon 1 Village happened, we were worried about how the waste and debris might affect our homes. Our village is home to about 270 people, 27 households live adjacent to the dump site. Some people have chosen to move out of fear."

Landslides are not the only problem here, adjacent communities also have to suffer from severe pollution coming from the site. Dust emissions from explosions has caused health issues, especially among the elderly and very young. Even the water is tainted by explosive byproducts.

Le Thi Thao, a resident of Khuon 3 village said, "The water changes colour when it's boiled, and it smells bad. We've asked the company to clean up the water but they have never responded."

Upon receiving the news of the cracks, Chairman of Thai Nguyen District People's Committee Duong Ngoc Long, promised that relevant agencies will inspect the site and provide solutions. However, he said, the current priority is to recover the bodies of the missing.

The new cracks at the dump site

People worry about more landslides

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