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Harmful waste treatment fees flying in HCMC

In Uncategorized on December 16, 2010 at 9:49 am

The average cost to treat harmful waste has skyrocketed up to VND40 million (US$2,000) a ton from only VND1.3 million in 2007. With such booming prices, businesses have to draw up contracts with waste treatment companies.

Prices skyrocket

The director of a cooking oil production plant in Tan Binh Industrial Zone (IZ) said that in 2009, his plant signed a waste treatment contract for the price of VND4.5 million a ton, but now it has increase to VND20 million.

The prices of harmful waste treatment skyrocket in HCMC (Photo: SGGP)

Two other companies in Hiep Phuoc IZ and in District 12 have signed contracts to collect and handle harmful waste at VND40 million a ton.

Meanwhile, the director of a drug production plant in District 12 said that waste treatment companies have been very choosey in things they want to recycle and with others, they reject. The ones they reject need to be handled with high temperatures.

Another issue has become known with regard waste treatment. To cope with the surging prices for waste treatment and with the inspection of authorized organizations, several of them have pretended to sign contracts with the waste collection and treatment companies.

It means they pay the companies a certain amount of money, which both sides have agreed on, in order to deal with the environment inspectors. These businesses do not transfer any of the hazardous waste, or possibly only a little for treatment. 

Meeting one twentieth of demand

The harmful waste treatment companies are just able to meet one twentieth of the demand, causing the price to skyrocket, according to Nguyen Trung Viet from the city Department of Natural Resources and Environment.

Statistically, HCMC produce 600 tons of harmful waste a day while the treatment companies just accommodate only 30 tons a day, which leads to them increasing their prices. Additionally, they usually chose the type of waste they are able to cycle, although the number of waste unable to recycle is three times higher.

In 2008, HCMC had 20 harmful waste treatment companies, most of them being private companies with little scope and capacity.

The number has been sharply dropped this year as the environment inspectors have tightened the regulations and have suspended 17 companies for failing to meet environment standards.

Because of the booming number of harmful waste, and the reduction in the number of the treatment companies, the Department of Natural Resources and Environment has called on an enquiry into this issue.

However, no enquiry has been carried out because there is a shortage of land in the city. In the meantime, several treatment companies have reported difficulties about enough land space they need to broaden their bases.

Some years ago, the city government planned to build a complex for treating waste in Cu Chi District. This 100-hectare area site has not yet come to be built, as there is still some paper work to be completed, with regard to clearance problems.

Many treatment companies have left HCMC for neighboring provinces of Binh Phuoc and Binh Duong. They are to build more waste treatment plants there, as the demand is very high.

HCMC management has tried to stabilize prices, but because of the increasing cost of treating harmful waste, it has affected food and product prices in the marketplace. To cope with the issue, the city will soon establish a facility to treat hazardous waste.

According to Bui Cach Tuyen, deputy director of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Vietnam has 60 harmful waste treatment companies with only small capacity.

Source: SGGP

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