Thermal power plants increasing on Hau River
VietNamNet Bridge - Why are coal-run thermopower plants located on the Hau River? Why do the plants all use Chinese technology? Will there be another Formosa on the Hau River?

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These are questions raised by environmental experts about the appearance of many coal power plants believed to threaten the environment in the Mekong River Delta.

According to Le Anh Tuan, deputy head of the Can Tho City’s Institute for Climate Change Studies, the map of projects in the southwest part of the Hau River, show a dense network of coal power plants, including Duyen Hai coal power plant in Tra Vinh province, and Lee & Man, Can Tho and Ca Mau gas power plant.

No one knows why the plants are located at the Hau river mouth. 

Tuan commenting that coal-run power plants have been ‘mushrooming in Mekong Delta’, believes that loopholes in law enforcement are the reason.

“Mekong Delta is not a coal basin. Why do the investors still want to develop coal power plants there, not in Quang Ninh province, where there is a large coal mine?” he asked.

“The reason why investors choose Mekong Delta instead of Quang Ninh must be shown clearly in their reports on possible impact on the environment,” he said.

In the future, the coal power plants will have to import coal, possibly from China, Australia and Indonesia. As for sustainable energy, Vietnam would face problems in energy security due to reliance on coal imports.

All the power plants in Mekong Delta use Chinese technology which is considered unsafe. 

The map of projects in the southwest part of the Hau Rivershow a dense network of coal power plants, including Duyen Hai coal power plant in Tra Vinh province, and Lee & Man, Can Tho and Ca Mau gas power plant.

Investors, while explaining the reason for them to choose Chinese technology, say the technology is cheap, but do not talk about its efficiency and possible impact on the environment.

However, the investors’ reports about possible impact on the environment are unreliable.

The investors of four coal power plants in Tra Vinh province all wrote in their reports that the ‘impact on the environment will be inconsiderable’.

“Will the impact be inconsiderable if four exhaust pipes all discharge waste into the environment?” Tuan asked.

Experts cited examples to show that reports on possible impact on the environment are made just for ‘form's sake’.

The reports for the Duyen Hai 1 and Duyen Hai 3, for example, did not show concrete solutions to minimize the impact on the coastal mangrove ecosystem and the community’s livelihood.

The reports all mentioned MIKE Steam-Prof models of thermal flow to assess air pollution, but did not prove the accuracy of the measure in local conditions.


Nam Lich

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