Craft village pollution in Bac Ninh Province



Man Xa Village is known for its aluminium recycling. Over 300 households recycle aluminium and 200 households are in iron and steel scrap trade. For years, they have misused chemicals and didn't follow any protocol to protect the environment and themselves. As a result, higher incomes have been accompanied by a higher number of sick people, many of them have respiratory diseases.

Nguyen Thi Trinh, a resident in Van Mon Commune, said, "The village works day and night. There are always vehicles on the roads and the village is covered in dust and smog.

This is only one out of 62 craft villages in Bac Ninh but its ammonium concentration and SO2 index are much higher than permitted. Despite the alarming pollution, there is no long-term solution because of various reasons. Waste treatment at the villages is lacking. The rubbish is mostly collected and burnt together, causing air pollution for the people in Van Mon Commune and neighbouring areas.

Nguyen Hoang Gia, chairman of Van Mon Commune People's Committee, said, "Since 2012, the rubbish is only collected and nothing else. Sometimes, the trucks of environmental companies arrive and take some away. The remaining rubbish still pollutes the environment."

They can't build a concentrated production area for the craft villages yet. Dam Ngan from Bac Ninh Department of Natural Resources and Environment said they had faced many difficulties in waste treatment at the craft villages.

"We are asking the communes to gather the rubbish, spray chemicals and cover it up temporarily. In the coming time, Bac Ninh authorities will build three waste-to-energy incineration plants to deal with the problem," he said.

Bac Ninh authorities have set up 16 concentrated industrial zones to deal with the wastewater problem. However, due to poor infrastructure, they can't deal with air pollution yet and the majority of the wastewater is still discharged into the environment. Ngu Huyen Khe River has been completely ruined by pollution.

The authorities then opened a rubbish burial site that can deal with 200 tonnes of rubbish a day. Three solid waste incinerators are being built. Dtinews/VOV

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