Vietnam Environment Administration Director General Nguyen Van Tai talks with Vietnam News about the environmental challenges Vietnam is facing and what to expect in the future. * Today is the opening day of the 4th National Environmental Conference. What has Vietnam done and has yet to achieve since the last conference five years ago? The biggest achievement we were able to pull off was to partly contain the increasing rate of environmental pollution or the rate of environmental degradation. With a developing country like Vietnam, the elimination of pollution is deemed impossible with economic development. What we can and should do is to hold the pollution rate down. We could do this thanks to the improving legal system since the 3rd National Environmental Conference in 2010. The new Law on Environmental Protection released in 2014, in particular, helped to fill in legal loopholes as well as hand environmental management authority to one single administration: the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE). Instead of the old system in which different ministries and organisations shared responsibilities to manage the environmental issue, MoNRE now will act as a sole conductor for general management, which in turn will unify actions from central to…
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