Vietnam to inspect waste treatment at Chinese paper mill

By Chi Nhan, Thanh Nien News

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Part of the Chinese-invested Lee & Man Paper factory in the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang. Photo: Gia Bach/Thanh Nien Part of the Chinese-invested Lee & Man Paper factory in the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang. Photo: Gia Bach/Thanh Nien

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Vietnamese authorities will inspect a Chinese-invested paper factory in the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang on Friday after environmental experts voiced concerns about its waste treatment system.
The inspection will last three days, the Vietnam Environment Administration announced Thursday.
Inspectors will look into the waste treatment system of the plant owned by Lee & Man Paper near the Hau River in the lower reaches of the Mekong River. The factory has recently raised public fears that it could have been discharging contaminated effluents that might pollute the river and kill fish.
Earlier this month, the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) proposed that the government and the National Assembly review the waste water treatment and environmental supervision at the plant.
It said residents and seafood companies in the Mekong Delta are very worried that the US$1.2 billion paper plant may cause pollution and contaminate seafood in the region once it fully comes into full in August.
Truong Dinh Hoe, general secretary of VASEP, said the project’s environmental assessment was carried out in 2007. Many things have changed since, including the effects of climate change, drought and saltwater intrusion that should be taken into consideration, he said.
He called on the government and the parliament to quickly instruct the inspection into the plant’s waste treatment system.

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