Ha Noi City People's Committee Deputy Chairman Vu Hong Khanh spoke with Ha Noi Moi (New Ha Noi) newspaper about measures to improve environmental quality.
Environmental pollution has been a pressing issue throughout urban areas. How has Ha Noi dealt with this problem?
Environmental pollution, in the case of solid waste, waste water and polluted air in particular, has not yet been improved.
Ha Noi City People's Committee has called on the municipal Natural Resources and Environment Department to adopt a range of measures, including organising environmental inspection teams and punishment measures to help curb environmental pollution.
The city, with assistance from local enterprises, has achieved some progress in implementing pilot projects based on curbing the pollution of water at various inner city lakes.
Last year saw 170 production units out of an inspected 220 in violation of environmental laws. Criminal proceedings were taken in 20 cases, 10 of which lead to prosecution.
According to some, Ha Noi will run out of places to dump rubbish by 2020. Is this true?
Ha Noi City has given priority and called on authorities to implement specific and effective strategies for collecting and treating solid waste. All surrounding communes and towns have established waste collection teams. Some communes and towns have even taken the initiative of developing small-scale sites to bury waste.
Having already anticipated an overload at existing dumping grounds, the city has specified seven waste treatment areas in the outlying districts of Dong Anh, Quoc Oai, Thach That, Ung Hoa, Phu Xuyen, Dan Phuong and Chuong My. The city also plans to expand the Xuan Son waste treatment zone in Son Tay District and the Nam Son waste treatment zone in Soc Son District.
Some enterprises have responded to the city's appeal for more effective waste treatment, a pioneer of which, AIC company, is currently developing a waste treatment factory based on German technology in Soc Son District as well as implementing an additional project on solid waste treatment in My Duc District.
A recent Ha Noi Party Congress resolution mentions certain criteria essential for improving environmental quality. Are these criteria feasible?
Environmental protection is a regular and long-term task.
According to the resolution 100 per cent of rubbish is planned to be collected and treated daily, 100 per cent of new production units will be required to apply clean technology and be equipped with waste treatment equipment, 85 per cent of dangerous solid waste and 100 per cent of hospital waste will be treated in accordance with given standard.
In order to achieve these targets, in addition to speeding up the implementation of construction projects, the city will focus on disseminating information in order to raise awareness regarding the importance of environmental protection amongst city dwellers.
The city has called on the Natural Resources and Environment Department, in co-ordination with the planning, investment and finance departments, to prioritise effective financial allocation in implementing environmental protection projects and programmes focused on waste water treatment, rubbish collection, water improvement in lakes and sewage management.
With the dedicated participation of the city, its departments and its people, I believe Ha Noi's environment will become increasingly green, clean and beautiful. — VNS