Legal loopholes make it impossible to control air quality
VietNamNet Bridge - Vietnam’s legal loopholes on regulations of air quality need to be eliminated immediately, experts say.



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Air quality control has not improved considerably as Vietnam still doesn’t have technical regulations for odors and indoor air. The current laws do not clearly stipulate total volume of emissions and time of discharge.

A scientist explained that the lack of regulation on the time of discharge worsens air pollution, because when many factories discharge waste at the same time, the emissions-receiving sources become overloaded.

The volume of emissions in the air depends on the scale or fields of operation of industrial facilities. Therefore, different enterprises will require different waste treatment processes. 

The current legal framework also doesn’t include regulations on supervision of enterprises’ emissions treatment, while the emissions licensing system still has not been activated. 

Emissions treatment now depends on investors’ commitments stated in reports on possible impact on the environment they have to submit before implementing projects. 

Industrial production workshops all have to carry out periodic environmental monitoring. However, most of them don’t perform emissions monitoring in the chimneys.

The 2014 Environment Protection Law, the 2005 Civil Code and government decree 113 have regulations on damage to the earth, water and wild animals, but don’t have regulations on damages to the air environment and compensation for the damages.

The 2014 Environment Protection Law, the 2005 Civil Code and government decree 113 have regulations on damage to the earth, water and wild animals, but don’t have regulations on damages to the air environment and compensation for the damages.

The current laws stipulate that households should take responsibility for controlling air pollution, but don’t specifically stipulate sanctions to be applied to households and individuals who discharge emissions and cause noise.

Le Hoai Nam, director of the Pollution Control Agency under the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment (MONRE), said while there are many legal documents related to the control of water waste, solid waste and hazardous waste, the documents related to air control are still lacking. 


It is easier to catch enterprises discharging solid and water waste because evidence can be found easily. But it is much more difficult to accuse enterprises of polluting the air, because evidence may be swept away by the wind or lost once machines stop working.

Environmentalists have unanimously called for a new law to specifically deal with air quality control. 

China, for example, has a 2000 law on pollution prevention and control which stipulates that businesses that violate the law and pollute the air may be fined up to 500,000 yuan.


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Kim Chi

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