Environment

September 27, 2021, 11:49 am

Cassava-processing plant in Yen Bai pollutes river, kills crops

(10:29:03 AM 20/10/2014)
(Tinmoitruong.vn) - The standard of living for residents in five communes along the Chay River in Yen Bai province in northwestern Vietnam has deteriorated as a cassava-processing plant has damaged crops and polluted water sources.


Cassava-processing plant in Yen Bai pollutes river, kills crops

 

When locals in Lang May Hamlet, Vu Linh Commune wake up in the morning, they immediately search for water. They leave home with many plastic cans on their shoulders, going towards the upper course of the Chay River, where they scoop water out of the river.

The water source in the hamlet is no longer safe for daily use as it has been contaminated by the starch processing plant. The water has turned yellow and smelly. “The water cannot be used for cooking and drinking anymore, or for cultivation. Shrimp, fish and crabs have all died as people have pumped the dirty water into ponds,” said Tran Ngoc Tam, deputy chair of Vu Linh Commune.

The last months of year are often the most miserable time for local people, as it is the time the starch processing plant runs at full capacity.

Mai Xuan Hung, 70, a local in Lang May Hamlet, complained that he still has to use polluted water daily, because he is too old to walk far to get clean water. “We feel sorry for our children and grandchildren,” he said. “We won’t die tomorrow, but I think the dirty water will lead to death soon.”

Pointing to the cassava plant, Hung said the land plot was the place for his home and garden in the past. His family received VND67 million in compensation for site clearance. The money was enough for him to buy a tiny land plot. As Hung has no more land for farming, he has been leading a difficult life.

Le Van Luong in Lang May Hamlet, said he is the biggest sufferer from the starch processing plant, because the plant is next to his house. “We still have to use water from underground sources, but only for washing hands or cleaning toilets,” he said. “I have to go to other places to get clean water for cooking. Sometimes I buy a 20-liter water can to get water for drinking.” “We wash our clothes at my parents’ house, which is far away from here. Only my children can wear white shirts, because these are the school uniform. We are afraid the yellow water will stain the clothes,” he said.

Tam said everyone can see that the water is very yellow and unsafe, without having to do experiments. However, environmental inspectors, after taking water samples for testing, said that the water had met required standards.

Nong Nghiep
KHÔNG XẢ RÁC BỪA BÃI

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