Hanoi air polluted by thermal power plants
VietNamNet Bridge - Inspection tours by the General Directorate of Environment at 19 thermal power plants have found that regulations on environmental protection have been violated at many plants. 


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At Vinh Tan and Duyen Hai, for example, environmental incidents took place during the process of equipment calibration and trial runs.

According to Nguyen Van Tai, general director of the General Directorate of Environment, coal-fired thermal power plants face three major environmental problems – dust, solid waste and cooling water. 

Though the plants are equipped with electrostatic precipitators, they still produce big volumes of dust and smoke. Slag landfills also contaminate ground water and surface water. 

There are 64 thermal power projects throughout the country, of which 26 are operational, 15 are under implementation, 13 have found investors and 10 others are still looking for investors. 

The total capacity of operating plants is 14,675 MW. They consume 40 million tons of coal a year and produce 15.8 million tons a year in slag.

The total capacity of operating plants is 14,675 MW. They consume 40 million tons of coal a year and produce 15.8 million tons a year in slag.

By 2030, when Vietnam puts more thermal power plants into operation, the total capacity would increase to 55,300 MW and the coal volume to be consumed would reach 129 million tons a year.

The pollution caused by thermopower plants not only affects the life of the locals in the areas, but also areas nearby.

Nguy Thi Khanh, director of GreenID, said that air pollution in Hanoi has become more serious partially because of the thermal power plants nearby.

Khanh said the capital city is surrounded by about 20 coal-fired thermal power plants in the northern part of the country. Most of the plants only have equipment to treat dust, and some of them have equipment to treat SO2 and none of them can treat Nox.

In winter, the northeast monsoon can bring dust from the north to Hanoi, thus worsening air pollution. Though thermal power plants are located from Hanoi, the capital city is still affected by plants because the fine dust PM2.5 can travel very far.

According to the Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Tran Hong Ha, for developing countries like Vietnam, thermal power is still dominant.

Ha said his ministry will work with the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) to assess the technologies of operating plants, while the ministry will assess technology of new projects before the projects are submitted to the government.


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Thanh Mai

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