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Experts suggest construction should go ‘green’

In Uncategorized on December 17, 2010 at 1:57 pm




Experts suggest construction should go ‘green’


QĐND – Friday, December 17, 2010, 20:53 (GMT+7)

It is high time for Vietnam to focus on development of green buildings, an academic and architect told a seminar in HCM City on Dec. 16.


Professor Nguyen Huu Dung explained that the country was in the process of becoming industrialised by 2020 and its rapid rate of urbanisation would mean the population in cities would rise to around 45 percent then from the current 30 percent.


“The construction and real-estate industries need to develop greener alternatives for the current architectural models that require large investments and energy supply but increase pollution,” he told around 200 delegates representing property developers and design and consulting firms.


Many projects overlook the climatic conditions and neglect energy efficiency while choosing construction materials.


The World Green Building Council has said that the construction sector consumes around 40 percent of the world’s energy and generates 30 percent of carbon emissions.


Green architecture refers to building designs that will conserve resources, including energy, land, water, and construction materials, limit pollution, protect the environment, help safeguard the health of consumers and communities, use space logically and efficiently, and ensure a harmonious relationship between human and nature.


Philippe Perruchot, general director of Vina Megastar Land and a consultant in LEED —Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, (an internationally recognised green building certification system) said green buildings also help improve the corporate image, asset value, risk mitigation and management, worker productivity, and social benefit.


Le Hoang Chau, chairman of the HCM City Real Estate Association (HoREA), said the city has several projects such as the Phu My Hung New Urban Area and Kenton complex project in District 7 that satisfy green building standards with their low construction density and large green and water spaces.


Vietnamese construction regulations on effective energy use in construction released in 2005 is set to be amended early next year to suit the evolving conditions.


Source: VNA


Source: QDND

Motorbike helmets should be required: US

In Uncategorized on November 17, 2010 at 3:26 am

PM Dung: effective social campaigns should be expanded

In Uncategorized on October 18, 2010 at 2:24 pm




PM Dung: effective social campaigns should be expanded


QĐND – Monday, October 18, 2010, 21:18 (GMT+7)

The two campaigns are politically and humanely significant and uphold the traditional mutual affection among Vietnamese people, said Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung.


PM Dung made the statement at a conference to review the 15-year and 10- year status of “All people build a cultural life in residential areas” and “Day for the Poor” campaigns opening in Hanoi on October 18.


Speaking at the conference, also attended by Ha Thi Khiet, member of the Party secretariat, Chairman of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee, Huynh Dam, said the “Day for the Poor” campaign has become a regular event of the VFF at all levels, with a variety of activities to help poor people all over the country.


In the meanwhile, the “All people build a cultural life in residential areas” has encouraged people to unite, uphold the democratic spirit, live and work in accordance with the Constitutions and Law, and prevent social evils since its beginning 15 years ago.


It has also greatly contributed to alleviating hunger and reducing poverty and achieving socio-economic development. Thanks to the campaign, the number of poor people nationwide decreased from 30 percent in 1999 to the current 10 percent.


As part of the campaign, a gratitude fund has mobilised as much as VND2 billion, helping to build 300,000 houses and repair 140,000 others and granting 700,000 savings books worth VND400 billion to families of social policies.


PM Dung highlighted the significance of the two campaigns, saying that they have brought into full play the country’s traditional mutual affection and raised the status of the VFF.


The two campaigns have encouraged all people to contribute to the social, cultural, and economic development and helped to solve problems in residential areas nationwide, he said, adding that they have created potential for each person, each residential area and the entire country.


The government leader requested Party committees, ministries, and relevant agencies to work closely with the VFF to improve the effectiveness of the campaigns and expand the models.


He also asked people’s committees at all levels to establish a mechanism to coorporate with the VFF to continue carrying out the campaigns effectively, considering them part of the cooperation between the people’s committees and the VFF.


Mr. Dung urged the VFF to innovate the approach of the campaigns and set up a steering committee to ensure its effectiveness. He asked the VFF to build criteria for the “cultural family” and “cultural residential area” titles and hold an annual “Great National Unity” festival on November 18.


Party committees should attach greater importance to creating favourable conditions for the VFF to implement the campaigns, considering it part of their political task, the PM said.


Source: VOV


Source: QDND

Vietnam should import vaccine against blue ear: officials

In Uncategorized on August 14, 2010 at 11:21 am

At an emergency meeting on August 13, directors of departments of agriculture and rural development in southern provinces proposed to import vaccine to fight against the pandemic in the region as Vietnam has no effective vaccine for the disease in pigs.

Mr. Paht agreed to quickly import Chinese vaccine and then test its effectiveness.


In addition, Deputy Head of the city’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Phuoc Trung said the fight against the epidemic is like fighting against the fire, proposing a suitable compensation for breeders or else breeders would sell diseased pigs at very cheap prices which further spreading of the disease. Farmers are willing to report their ill herds because the government announced to give farmers VND25,000 per kilo of meat lost as compensation.

A pork seller in a market in Dalat City sees no purchase (Photo: SGGP)

Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Cao Duc Phat and other officials had pork during break time to encourage residents who feared for the blue ear in pigs in the country to consume safe pork.


Because the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV) – also called “Blue Ear” – has heavily hit two highlands provinces of Dak Lak and Lam Dong, residents don’t want to eat pork, the consumption has declined.


The central highlands town of Da Lat has been affected although it is 200 kilometer far from Lam Dong. Pork sellers did nothing but chatting or sleeping because the market was going through a slump. A pork seller, Ms. Nhung, said the sale declined a half in one week.


The situation is the same in the city Nha Trang in the central province of Khanh Hoa. Traders petitioned to stop selling pork in markets, claiming that governments should raise public awareness more as customers turned their back even to safe pork with verifications.

Source: SGGP

Relief tunnel should reach Gulf well by weekend

In Uncategorized on July 21, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Three months into the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, the federal government’s spill chief says a relief tunnel should finally reach BP’s broken well by the weekend, meaning the gusher could be snuffed for good within two weeks.


After several days of concern about the well’s stability and the leaky cap keeping the oil mostly bottled up, retired Coast Guard Adm. Thad Allen said Tuesday that engineers concluded the risk of a bigger blowout was minimal and were getting closer to pumping mud into the column to permanently seal it.


“We continue to be pleased with the progress,” Allen said in Washington, giving the go-ahead to keep the well cap shut for at least 24 more hours and possibly longer.

Oil booms are seen in Breton Island, Louisiana, as oil leaking from the Deepwater Horizon wellhead continues to spread in the Gulf of Mexico in this May 3, 2010 file photo

BP vice president Kent Wells said crews hope to drill sideways into the blown-out well and intercept it at the end of July. The relief well is necessary to plug the well permanently.


After it’s done, crews will begin the kill procedure, pumping mud and cement into the hole a mile underwater to seal it, which BP said could take anywhere from five days to a couple of weeks.


“Everything’s looking good,” Well said. “The relief well is exactly where we want it. It’s pointed in the right direction, and so we’re feeling good about that.”


Engineers are also considering shooting drilling mud down through the cap to increase the chances that the attempt to kill the well succeeds.


News that a solution is near cheered Jeff Hunt who scans the waves daily for telltale tar balls in Pensacola Beach, Fla.


“It makes me very happy, after nearly three months, that they finally have gotten to a pinnacle point of closing it,” said the co-owner of a hair salon. “We need to plug the thing.”


BP wants to leave the cap on in the meantime. At one point, Allen wanted instead to relieve the pressure by opening up the cap and siphoning oil up to ships on the surface, but he has relented in the past few days. Opening the cap would have required allowing millions of gallons oil to gush into the sea again for a few days while the plumbing was hooked up.


Seepage detected from the seafloor briefly raised fears that the well was in danger, but Allen said that another well is to blame.


The seepage is closer to the older well than to the one that blew out, Allen said.


There are two wells within two miles of BP’s blowout, one that has been abandoned and another that is not in production. Around 27,000 abandoned wells in the Gulf aren’t checked for leaks, an Associated Press investigation showed this month.


The BP-leased Deepwater Horizon rig exploded April 20, killing 11 workers and touching off one of America’s worst environmental crises. The well has spewed somewhere between 94 million and 184 million gallons into the Gulf. BP said the cost of dealing with the spill has now reached nearly $4 billion.

Source: SGGP

Country should produce attractive and educational online games

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 4:45 pm

Many discussions on online games have been held recently to consider the negative imapact they have had on Vietnam’s youth.

Many young people spends much of their time and money playing online games. (Photo: SGGP

People have said that young people have spent much of their time and money playing online games. Violent, sexually explicit games have been blamed for many recent crimes.


Many have argued that the government should ban or limit development of online games.


However, other people said that it is not easy to implement a prohibition of online games. Players can play online games on foreign websites through internet.


The country’s authorities should delegate online game distributors to manage their sector directly. They must submit their management measures to the government for promoting and launching produces.


Online games attract 2-3 million Vietnamese young people.


Along with unwholesome content of many games, several games that are more wholesome have become hits in the country.  Such games require players to have knowledge of Vietnamese culture, history and society.


The government and entrepreneurs should join hands to produce attractive and educational online games to create a modern yet healthy playing field for the youth.

Source: SGGP

Superstitious touching of turtleheads should be eliminated

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 1:06 pm


It is believed that touching the heads of stone turtles of Hanoi’s Van Mieu (Temple of Literature), the first Vietnamese university, will bring students good luck. Therefore, the management board of Van Mieu has mobilized all staff and youth volunteers to “protect” stone turtles from being touched by students as the date of the university entrance exam fast approaches.

The 82 stelae contains important documentation for studies related to the history of Vietnamese fine art and sculpture from the 15th to 18th centuries (Photo: U. Phuong)

The 82 stone stelae, honored as part of UNESCO’s Memory of the World Program on March 9, 2010, contains the inscribed names of doctoral laureates who passed imperial examinations during the era of the Le and Mac dynasties, which reigned from 1442 to 1779.


According to legend, students will enjoy good luck if they touch the turtlehead before taking tests. In the days leading up to the entrance university examination, scorching hot weather in Hanoi did not hinder examinees and their relatives from waiting in a long queues, as they waited to enter the Temple of Literature to perform this rite of luck before the upcoming, all-important examination.


Dr. Dang Kim Ngoc, director of the center of scientific and cultural activities of the Temple of Literature, said it is a mere fabrication that touching turtleheads brings good luck; however, many high school graduates due to take entrance examinations believe in the superstition nonetheless.


All staff and local youth volunteers have been called in to help prevent visitors from touching the turtleheads; however, their efforts have been unsuccessful, as superstitious people have persisted in their quest to touch the historic turtles, said Dr. Ngoc.


To protect the 82 stone stelae, the center constructed a stainless steel barrier around the stelae but people lacking respect destroyed it, Dr. Ngoc complained.


Dr. Ngoc said the center has planned two additional protection schemes. The first is to use a strong transparent glass barrier (above the turtlehead) surrounding the stelae, while ensuring ventilation inside and outside.


The second proposal is to use a wood column fence decorated with the colors and patterns used in ancient times, to separate visitors from the turtles. The designs of these fences match the roof and interior of the temple. However, no final decision has been made.


The Temple has been selected frequently, to host special events because it is a historically significant place, leading to constant touching of the stelae, which contains important documentation for studies related to the history of Vietnamese fine art and sculpture from the 15th to 18th centuries. The government should raise public awareness through media and education and should quickly adopt a measure to protect the precious stelae from destruction.

Source: SGGP

Youth should maintain self-control in online forums

In Uncategorized on May 26, 2010 at 9:22 am

Monetary, fiscal policies should act in tandem for sustainable growth: NA

In Uncategorized on May 8, 2010 at 4:48 pm




Monetary, fiscal policies should act in tandem for sustainable growth: NA


QĐND – Saturday, May 08, 2010, 22:28 (GMT+7)

Monetary and fiscal policies adopted by the State Bank of Vietnam and the Ministry of Finance respectively have to compliment each other to help curb inflation, improve the balance of payments and reduce the State budget deficit, NA deputies said on Friday.


National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong speaks at the opening of the 31st National Assembly Standing Committee session on May 6.


This would, in turn, ensure sustainable growth, they added.


The National Assembly Standing Committee gave its opinion on a Government report on the socio-economic situation and the State budget in 2009 and the first months of 2010.  


In the report released on the second day of the 31st session in Hanoi on May 7, the Government said 17 of 25 targets assigned by the NA had been fulfilled or exceeded in 2009.


Some impressive achievements were gained in implementing the socio-economic development plan in early months of this year, the report said.  


The foreign exchange market had been gradually stabilized and its liquidity was improved. The exchange rate of the dong to the US dollar on the free market has come close to the official transaction rate at commercial banks.  


However, the consumer price index (CPI) has risen sharply in early months, especially in essential goods that directly affect people’s lives.


In late 2009 and early 2010, most enterprises, especially small and medium-sized ones, faced difficulties in accessing loans and their production and business were drastically affected, negatively impacting economic growth in the remaining months of the year, the report said.  


The trade gap was still high at US$4.7 billion in the first four months of the year in while the balance of payments had reached US$8.8 billion last year, it noted.  


Ha Van Hien, chairman of the NA Economic Committee said, “In the context of uncertain exports, falling foreign currency reserves, rising trade gap, inflation, dong devaluation and pressure of exchange rate adjustment, stabilizing the macro economy will face great challenges.”


Regarding the State budget, the NA Finance and Budget Committee (NAFBC) said overspending at 6.9 percent of GDP should be considered a shortcoming in State budget management last year.


The NAFBC warned that managing the State budget and ensuring national financial security will become more difficult in 2010 than 2009 since the increase in budget deficit to over 5 percent of the GDP as well as the increase in issuance of Government bonds have pushed the Government debt to 44.6 percent of GDP.  


Truong Thi Mai, Chairwoman of the NA Social Affairs Committee, said, “The NA and Government are determined to reduce the budget deficit. Though the Government debt still stands at the safe threshold, it will cross this threshold in one or two years if the overspending goes unchecked.”


Source: VietnamNet/SGGP


 


Source: QDND

Monetary, fiscal policies should act in tandem for sustainable growth: NA

In Uncategorized on May 8, 2010 at 12:42 pm

Monetary and fiscal policies adopted by the State Bank of Vietnam and the Ministry of Finance respectively have to compliment each other to help curb inflation, improve the balance of payments and reduce the State budget deficit, NA deputies said on Friday.

National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong speaks at the opening of the 31st National Assembly Standing Committee session on May 6.

This would, in turn, ensure sustainable growth, they added.
 
The National Assembly Standing Committee gave its opinion on a Government report on the socio-economic situation and the State budget in 2009 and the first months of 2010.
 
In the report released on the second day of the 31st session in Hanoi on May 7, the Government said 17 of 25 targets assigned by the NA had been fulfilled or exceeded in 2009.
 
Some impressive achievements were gained in implementing the socio-economic development plan in early months of this year, the report said.
 
The foreign exchange market had been gradually stabilized and its liquidity was improved. The exchange rate of the dong to the US dollar on the free market has come close to the official transaction rate at commercial banks.
 
However, the consumer price index (CPI) has risen sharply in early months, especially in essential goods that directly affect people’s lives.
 
In late 2009 and early 2010, most enterprises, especially small and medium-sized ones, faced difficulties in accessing loans and their production and business were drastically affected, negatively impacting economic growth in the remaining months of the year, the report said.
 
The trade gap was still high at US$4.7 billion in the first four months of the year in while the balance of payments had reached US$8.8 billion last year, it noted.
 
Ha Van Hien, chairman of the NA Economic Committee said, “In the context of uncertain exports, falling foreign currency reserves, rising trade gap, inflation, dong devaluation and pressure of exchange rate adjustment, stabilizing the macro economy will face great challenges.”
 
Regarding the State budget, the NA Finance and Budget Committee (NAFBC) said overspending at 6.9 percent of GDP should be considered a shortcoming in State budget management last year.
 
The NAFBC warned that managing the State budget and ensuring national financial security will become more difficult in 2010 than 2009 since the increase in budget deficit to over 5 percent of the GDP as well as the increase in issuance of Government bonds have pushed the Government debt to 44.6 percent of GDP.
 
Truong Thi Mai, Chairwoman of the NA Social Affairs Committee, said, “The NA and Government are determined to reduce the budget deficit. Though the Government debt still stands at the safe threshold, it will cross this threshold in one or two years if the overspending goes unchecked.”

Source: SGGP