Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Vietnam’s environmental sector to get stronger legal support

 December 17, 2012
Vietnam is changing its legal framework to help the environmental services industry grow, according to Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Bui Cach Tuyen.
The current legal system was still fragmented and lacked regulations for environmental services providers, Tuyen said while chairing a workshop for environmental regulators and experts in Ho Chi Minh City.
Due to the lack of regulations, the current system of environmental services providers did not meet demand, said Vu Dinh Nam, from the Vietnam Administration of Environment, so the new framework should include incentives to engage the private sector.
Statistics from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment reveal that the environmental services industry has great potential to thrive as the capacity to treat urban waste water only meets 10 percent of the demand.
Among the six types of environmental services, participants at the regulators’ workshop focused on the low quality of environmental impact assessments (EIA).
A representative from southern Tien Giang Province's Department of Natural Resources and Environment said even though there were 20 consulting companies that provided EIA services, not a single one was capable of satisfying the department's needs.
"Many EIA reports were done on a wholesale cut-and-paste basis, and they deployed a reactive policy, meaning they would rather fix the EIA when requested rather than come up with an error-free version on the first try," he said.

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