Northern mountainous region suffers water shortage

Provinces in the northern mountain regions including Lai Chau, Lao Cai, Ha Giang, Cao Bang, Lang Son, Yen Bai and Hoa Binh are experiencing severe water shortages. This man has to travel tens of kilometers to take water from a public water tank for his family (Photo: SGGP) Muong Khuong District in Lao Cai Province is experiencing the worst drought. Local residents living in the limestone geography must carry water 10 kilometers in Din Chin and Ta Gia Khau Commune. It takes the whole day to get 20 liters at public water tanks or rivulets in the mountain. The two communes have only 3-4 rivulets which run very slowly, said Sung A Tra. Over 1,000 residents experience water shortage and losing 500 hectares of corn grounds. Residents enter the forest in search for water sources from March to May every year in Bat Xat, Muong Khuong, Si Ma Cai and Bac Ha District, said the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Lao Cai Province. Besides cold snaps, local … [Read more...]

Social News Headlines 21/3

Ha Noi blogger to spend 15 months in jail for slander Ha Noi blogger Pham Viet Dao has been sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to abusing his rights to freedom and democracy. The court ruled that his actions had infringed upon State interests, rights and legitimate interests of organisations or citizens under Article 258 of the Penal Code. The jail term will starts from the date he was detained on June 13, 2013, the court ruled. The indictment read that Dao, 62, residing in Buoi ward, Tay Ho district, authored three blogs -Phamvietdao3.blogspot.com, Phamvietdao4.blogspot.com and Chientranhtrungviet.blogspot.com - on which he posted 91 articles slandering the Party and State. At the yesterday's trial in the capital city, Dao admitted his guilt, saying his actions were a result of a lack of awareness of the law. He promised not to repeat his actions. Dao has 15 days to appeal the verdict. 200kg of black coral seized in Quang … [Read more...]

Chilly weather upturns life in northern region

The bitter cold wave has extended for 12 more days in the northern region, resulting in students not attending schools, thousands of residents being rushed to hospitals, and hundreds of cattle dying from the frost and chill. Several people have been hospitalized due to the cold in the northern and northern region (Photo: SGGP) Several hospitals in provinces like Lao Cai, Lai Chau, Cao Bang and Lang Son and Hanoi City are crowded with patients, who have to now camp along corridors and stairways because there is no other space left. Nguyen Quoc Anh, director of Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi, said that the number of people coming for health checks and treatment has surged to 3,500 a day. The hospitals are working overtime to cope with the huge numbers of patients. Several schools sent nursery and primary students back to their homes after temperatures plunged below 10 degrees celsius, causing at least one of their parents to take leave to look after the children. Along streets in … [Read more...]

Social News Headlines 21/3

Ha Noi blogger to spend 15 months in jail for slander Ha Noi blogger Pham Viet Dao has been sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to abusing his rights to freedom and democracy. The court ruled that his actions had infringed upon State interests, rights and legitimate interests of organisations or citizens under Article 258 of the Penal Code. The jail term will starts from the date he was detained on June 13, 2013, the court ruled. The indictment read that Dao, 62, residing in Buoi ward, Tay Ho district, authored three blogs -Phamvietdao3.blogspot.com, Phamvietdao4.blogspot.com and Chientranhtrungviet.blogspot.com - on which he posted 91 articles slandering the Party and State. At the yesterday's trial in the capital city, Dao admitted his guilt, saying his actions were a result of a lack of awareness of the law. He promised not to repeat his actions. Dao has 15 days to appeal the verdict. 200kg of black coral seized in Quang … [Read more...]

World Meteorological Day marked in Vietnam

A meeting was held in Vinh city in the central province of Nghe An on March 23 to mark the World Meteorological Day (March 23, 1950) by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and city authorities. Themed "Climate Knowledge for Climate Action", the United Nations day aims to call on all governments and civil organisations to share and apply meteorological knowledge to mitigate climate risks and foster sustainable development. During the meeting, Minister Nguyen Minh Quang stressed the need for the hydro-meteorological sector to address shortcomings, improve management effectiveness and efficiency, and boost development and climate change monitoring. He also urged the sector to implement practical activities to raise awareness on developing a climate-friendly lifestyle, prevent natural calamities and mitigate their consequences, adapt to climate change, and foster science research and technology application. Vietnam frequently experiences severe and … [Read more...]

2015 Earth Hour campaign held nationwide

The ceremony at the August Revolution Square in front of the Hanoi Opera House NDO – A ceremony was organised on March 22 at the August Revolution Square in front of the Hanoi Opera House to respond to the 2015 Earth Hour campaign launched by the World Wild Fund for Nature (WWF). The ceremony was attended by Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang, Hanoi’s leaders and delegates from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, the Embassy of Denmark in Vietnam and the WWF. Thousands of people also gathered at the August Revolution Square from 8:30pm to 9:30pm to join the 2015 Earth Hour campaign. Lights and unnecessary electrical appliances of buildings, shops and local residences around Hoan Kiem Lake and the Hanoi Opera House were turned off during the one hour campaign. This is the seventh time Vietnam has responded to the Earth Hour campaign. This year’s campaign calls upon people to save energy in order to deal with climate change. Earlier, a … [Read more...]

PM authorizes granite exploitation in Dak Lak and Ninh Thuan

(CPV) - Prime Minister (PM), Nguyen Tan Dung has agreed in principle to authorizing the exploration and exploitation of granite in the central highlands province of Dak Lak and the southern coastal province of Ninh Thuan. Specifically, the PM agreed in principle to granting a permit for the Thuan Thanh Co. Ltd., to explore and mine granite in areas surrounding Ta Nang Mountain in Phuoc Dai commune, Ninh Thuan province and additional granite mining at Cha Bang Mountain (Jaty Hill), Phuoc Nam commune, Ninh Phuoc district and Mavieck 2 Mountain, Phuoc Dinh commune, Thuan Nam district, Ninh Thuan province. Granite mining was also permitted in principle at Gio Mountain, in Phuoc Minh commune, Ninh Thuan province by the Phan Rang Mineral Processing and Exploitation Joint Stock Company. In Dak Lak province, the PM authorized exploitation of granite mining at Chu Phot hill, EaSol commune, Ea H'Leo district for the Hoang Son Dak Lak Investment and Development Company. The PM asked the … [Read more...]

Residents’ fears alleviated after hazardous dioxin cleaned up

VietNamNet Bridge – For the 170,000 Vietnamese living near Bien Hoa and Phu Cat airbases, they may finally start living without fear of dioxin exposure as a result of a five-year clean up of dioxin contaminated hotspots in Viet Nam. Illustrative image -- File photo The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment's Committee 33 and the UN Development Programme made the announcement at a workshop held on Thursday, March 19. Bien Hoa, Da Nang and Phu Cat airbases were contaminated hotspots of dioxin, a toxin that causes large-scale disruptions to ecosystem and poses serious health risks to humans in surrounding areas. Cleanup efforts in the area began in 2010 and received more than US$5 million in funding from the Global Environment Facility and the Czech Republic. Speaking at the event, UNDP Deputy Country Director Bakhodir Burkhanov said that when the project began, there was a serious lack of information and public awareness about the negative effects of dioxin … [Read more...]

Organizing a meeting in response to the 2015 World Water Day

The Hanoitimes - The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment in collaboration with People's Committee of Bac Giang province held a national meeting to celebrate the 2015 World Water Day in the northern province of Bac Giang on March 20. Attending the meeting were Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai; representatives of ministries, international organizations and more than 3,000 local residents. Titled "Water is at the core of sustainable development", the 2015 World Water Day aims to raise public awareness of the relationship between water and sustainable development as well as promote dialogues to solve related issues. Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai made a speech at the meeting Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai affirmed the importance of effective water use for sustainable development. The Deputy Prime Minister stressed that water is the foundation of poverty reduction, economic growth, and environmental sustainability, adding that … [Read more...]

Social News 21/3

Man uses saw to cut bomb, loses legs A 47-year-old man was critical after being injured while attempting to cut an unexploded bomb in Dong Xuan District of Phu Yen Province. Tran Van So was trying to cut the bomb with a saw on Monday when it exploded. So suffered broken legs and received several injuries on his body. Doctors had to amputate his legs later. The victim's wife said their family, which makes a living from farm work, was facing economic difficulties. Girl missing in Vietnam found dead in Cambodia An eight-year-old Vietnamese girl was found dead in Cambodia’s Svay Rieng province, near the border with Vietnam on March 19. Ngo Ngoc Phut was a 2nd grade student of Binh My 2 primary school in Binh My commune, Cu Chi district, Ho Chi Minh City. She was reported missing after leaving school on January 26. No trace of her has been found since then despite great efforts from her family and relevant agencies. According to the People’s Committee of Loi Thuan … [Read more...]

Workshop highlights role of water in sustainable development

Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Nguyen Thai Lai speaks at the workshop. (Credit: baotainguyenmoitruong.vn) NDO – The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) organised a scientific workshop themed ‘Water is the core of sustainable development’ in the northern city of Bac Giang on March 19 to respond to the initiative of World Water Day 2015. Twelve presentations, which were related to managing, using and protecting water resources and improving awareness of officers at grassroots levels about the matters, were made at the workshop. It was noted that water, energy and food are indispensable elements to the existence and development of people and society, therefore policy-makers and communities should have prompt actions and solutions to ensure the security of such crucial elements. Concluding the workshop, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Nguyen Thai Lai asked provincial and municipal Departments of Natural … [Read more...]

No more potential risks of dioxin exposure for 170,000 people

Mr Bakhodir Burkhanov, UNDP Deputy Country Director, addressed to the workshop. (Photo: CPV) (CPV) - There are no longer potential risks of dioxin exposure for about 170,000 people living near Bien Hoa airbase and in the vicinity of Phu Cat airbase in the south and centre of Viet Nam, respectively. This was announced in Ha Noi on March 19th 2015 by the Office of National Steering Committee (Office 33) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Viet Nam at the closing workshop for the project "Environmental remediation of dioxin contaminated hotspots in Viet Nam", which was funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) via UNDP. The project has been implemented since 2010 with more than USD5 million, with the bulk from GEF (nearly USD5 million) and USD76,000 from the Czech Republic. It aimed to minimize the disruption of ecosystems and health risks for people in contaminated hotspots - Bien Hoa, Da Nang and Phu Cat airbases. Key result of the project, as shared at the workshop, … [Read more...]

Hundreds of thousands of people escape from potential dioxin exposure

UNDP Deputy Country Director Bakhodir Burkhanov speaking at the workshop in Hanoi on March 19 NDO - About 170,000 Vietnamese residents living near the dioxin contaminated hotspots of Bien Hoa and Phu Cat airbases have escaped from the potential risk of dioxin exposure thanks to the five-year project on handling dioxin at contaminated hotspots in Vietnam. The figures were released by the Office of National Steering Committee (Office 33) and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) in Vietnam at a workshop on the results of the project named 'Environmental Remediation of Dioxin Contaminated Hotspots in Vietnam' which was held in Hanoi on March 19. The project was carried out from 2010 to 2014 by the Office 33 under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and managed by UNDP Vietnam with the co-ordination of the Ministry of Defence and the People's Committees of Da Nang, Binh Duong and Dong Nai. The five-year project has a total budget of over US$5 million including nearly … [Read more...]

The planning of national water resources to soon be deployed

Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai, Chairman of the National Council on Water Resources recently urged the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to speed up the planning of national water resources. Accordingly, it is necessary to integrate into the basic survey of water resources to submit for the approval of Prime Minister in 2016. In addition, the Deputy Prime Minister assigned the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to review carefully the regulations of the draft decree on the protection corridor of water resources, the decree on incentives and encouragement of economical use of water, the decree on the rights to water resources exploitation to ensure the feasibility and avoid overlap. At the same time, the Ministry play the leading role and coordinate with ministries and agencies to review, and conduct the outlines of strategies and planning of water resources. On this basis, determining which planning is really necessary, which can be integrated to … [Read more...]

Vietnam strongly committed to protect wildlife

Vietnam is not only a place of supplying wild animals to the international market, but also a place transiting and consuming wild animals in Southeast Asia and sub-Mekong areas. To protect the sustainability of natural resources, Vietnam has implemented many drastic actions. Raising awareness and changing behavior Recently, the Prime Minister has issued a directive on enhancing rare wildlife conservation. This is considered as a drastic action of the Vietnam Government in the fight against supply, transit and consumption of wildlife in Vietnam. Accordingly, advocacy, dissemination and education of the regulations of the law on the management and conservation of wild animals are considered top priority. Vietnam has built a Wildlife Enforcement Network(WEN) along with activities to raise awareness in order to prevent the problem of illegally wildlife trafficking in Vietnam as well as other neighboring countries. Along with that, many programs and projects have been implemented in … [Read more...]

Finland supports Vietnam to manage forest resources

Embassy of Finland coordinated with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and AdtionAid Vietnam (AAV) to implement the project "The participation of citizens in improving forest management, hunger erase and poverty reduction in Vietnam (PFG - Vietnam)". The project was carried out with a total budget of 10 million euros (nearly 25 billion VND). This is the first time digital technology tools are applied to the protection of forest resources in Vietnam. The project was implemented within 5 years in 6 poor districts of 6 provinces of Vietnam. Accordingly, local people and rangers will be given administration rights of Open Data Gathering software (open information system with the technical support of Nokia and Microsoft) to access and control their own forest areas. This software also supports the forestry departments and relevant agencies to access and exchange data on forestry, promoting the development of forestry. This … [Read more...]

Vietnam approves commercial crops of GMO corn to cut imports

Genetically modified corn being grown at a trial farm in Vietnam. Photo: Quang Thuan Vietnamese farmers nationwide are now able to plant three varieties of genetically-modified (GM) corn from the Swiss firm Syngenta, according to a new government's rule announced Wednesday. The three varieties are NK66 BT, NK66 GT and NK66 BT/GT and will be supplied to corn farms nationwide with each variety being distributed to specific regions, said the decision from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. NK66 BT in particular will be supplied to regions with European corn borers, NK66 GT for places with strong weeds and the other for farms susceptible to both the borers and weeds. Pham Dong Quang, director of the Department of Crop Production, said the three varieties can resist pest and herbicide as well as produce higher yields. "GM corn will be used for animal feed only and thus, it does not require special labeling," he said. Earlier, the agriculture ministry has approved … [Read more...]

Ca Mau forwards coastal afforestation to mend sea dyke

Climate change has worsened coastal landslide and erosion in the southernmost province of Ca Mau, where many dyke sections have been slipped into the sea. Local authorities thus have sped up afforestation projects to prevent these breaches from enlarging. Coastal erosion has more and more narrowed Ca Mau province's area in recent years (Photo: SGGP) Ca Mau has three sea-facing sides with a total length of 254 kilometers, accounting for one third of the Mekong Delta’s beach. Erosion has quickly occurred and narrowed protection forest area along coastal areas in recent years. Among the worst hit are estuaries in the western sea dyke of the province. "Landslide has approached closely to my house and I don’t know where to move in now," said Tran Anh Le living near Cai Cam estuary. Similar condition has also tormented those in the eastern side of the province. Tran Van Tu settling near Ganh Hao estuary in Dam Doi District said that coastal landslide has forced many people … [Read more...]

Vietnam plans greener rice cultivation

Vietnam plans to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from rice cultivation alone by 14 percent by 2030. This was announced at a recent conference in Hanoi by an official from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment. Pham Hoang Yen, an expert involved in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the Kyoto Protocol, said in the last few years, the country has purchased the goal of a 20 percent reduction in GHG in the overall cultivation sector by 2020. What the country has been doing includes preparation for National Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA) and other policies developing countries adopted to control global GHG at a UNFCC conference in Bali eight years ago. In addition, Vietnam has also carried out a programme of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM). In June last year, the country had 253 CDM projects and had registered 11 programmes of activities. This move earned it 10.7 million certified emission reduction (CEF) credits … [Read more...]

Ben Tre residents fear overloaded landfill

Hundreds of households in a village in southern Ben Tre Province are suffering from serious pollution caused by a nearby landfill. Phu Hung landfill The Phu Hung landfill covers 52,000 square metres in Phu Thanh Hamlet of Phu Hung Commune and has been receiving waste from Ben Tre City, some districts as well Giao Long and An Hiep industrial parks in the province for some 20 years. Local residents in Phu Hung Commune of Ben Tre City, as well as Phuoc Thanh and Huu Dinh communes in Chau Thanh District have reported air and water pollution caused by the landfill. They are worried about their children’s health. Wastewater from the landfill has contaminated local waterways and rice paddies. Serious pollution "Wastewater from the landfill pollutes our rice fields and destroys our crops," said Phan Thanh Hiep, a local man from Phu Hung Commune. Due to lax management by Ben Tre City’s Urban Works JSC, some local enterprises have dumped chemical waste into the … [Read more...]