Pollution warnings should be timely delivered to community: PM

SGGP

Seeing that air pollution has caused grave impacts on the socio-economic development of many regions in the country, especially in major cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC), the Prime Minister has just released an instruction on stricter monitoring of air quality and air pollution nationwide.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc is giving instructions on the delivery of timely warnings of air pollution to the community. (Photo: SGGP)

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc is giving instructions on the delivery of timely warnings of air pollution to the community. (Photo: SGGP)

Accordingly, the Prime Minister asked that until the middle of the year, related ministries, state agencies, the people’s committees of all provinces urgently evaluate the law enforcement regarding dust and exhaust fumes management in industrial units, in traffic activities, and in construction sites, temporarily ceasing the operation of these places if they seriously violate the law.

Lately, in Vietnam, dust and exhaust emissions from vehicles, construction sites, and industrial plants have been released in great amounts to the environment. Adding to that are the reduction of green space during the urbanization process and the lack of synchronization in air pollution control among state agencies.

Therefore, the Prime Minister requested that the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment prepare a careful plan for air quality management in the period from 2021-2025.

The plan should present methods to increase air quality monitoring activities, to timely deliver warnings about severe pollution states to the public. It should also detail investment intentions to necessary equipment for air quality monitoring in accordance with the overall national environment planning, so that in 2025, the air quality of all regions in the country is always under control.

The Prime Minister asked for a standard route to establish one national technical criteria set for land vehicles in Vietnam, to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2021.

The Ministry of Transport is required to create a national scheme for the development of eco-friendly vehicles, including electric ones. Public transports and environmentally friendly vehicles must be encouraged in the community.

This ministry is also asked to form and implement a national technical criteria set for exhaust fumes from vehicles, with the aim of reducing dust and exhaust emissions at all cost.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade is requested to increase their monitoring of projects and manufacturing plants that possess a high potential of damaging the air quality like coal-fired power stations, petroleum refineries, chemical and fertilizer factories.

There should be a policy to promote and support the use of clean energy and eco-friendly technologies among manufacturers.

Actions are needed to evaluate the ability to produce or import land vehicle fuel that can match the national technical criteria on exhaust fumes.

The Prime Minister then directed the Ministry of Construction to provide suitable regulations and solutions to control dust and exhaust emissions in construction activities. The urbanization process carried out in all areas of Vietnam must ensure sufficient green space and water surface in accordance with related laws.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development is asked to effectively launch schemes to collect and process crop by-products, turning them into useful ones. Propaganda activities must be increasingly done so that citizens lessen the burning of agricultural by-products. Instead, they are encouraged to properly handle them to protect the environment.

The People’s Committees of Hanoi and HCMC, as well as those of provinces with a high risk of air pollution, are requested to strictly follow the laws to control air quality in their region. Appropriate solutions to cope with severe air pollution states must be introduced and timely implemented. An evaluation of the volume of ultrafine dust particles in the air (PM10, PM2.5) must be completed before December 31, 2021.

All regions in Vietnam are instructed to harshly punish any units that are blamed of causing air pollution. Along with that, these units must be transferred to more suitable areas.

Propaganda campaigns should be carried out to raise the awareness of the public about the danger of air pollution. Proper support should be provided to small- and medium-scaled family businesses so that they stop using honeycomb charcoal in their activities.

Appropriate guidance must be offered in order for households to more effectively use agricultural by-products.

By Phan Thao – Translated by Vien Hong

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