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November 27, 2020, 12:28 am

An “international dumping ground” in Khoai Village

(16:16:45 PM 19/02/2015)
(Tinmoitruong.vn) - Called the “rubbish metropolis”, the Minh Khai Village in Van Lam District of Hung Yen province receives several tons of garbage every day.


An “international dumping ground” in Khoai Village


Minh Khai Village residents are surrounde by the black smoke from recycling workshops and breathing the air reeking of burnt plastics near sewers which produce picth-dark water.


Minh Khai Village is a name used only in official documents. It is better known as Khoai Village (sweet potato) or the “village of the recycling billionaires”. There are many billionaires in the village who have got rich with their jobs of recycling waste.


Khoai Village has been a “garbage hub” over the last 20 years. In the afternoon, trucks laden with waste of different kinds queue up at the entrance to the village.


They bring waste from Hanoi and neighboring localities to the garbage hub, where the waste is recycled into brand-new products to be sold at traditional markets in cities.


The large scale of the Khoai Village’s “waste recycling complex” could surprise anyone.


There are many rubbish-gathering places in the village, while all the spaces there could be exploited to contain garbage.


Therefore, the only playing ground for the children in the village is the communal house’s yard.


Do The Phuc, deputy chair of the Van Lam District People’s Committee, said Khoai Village is an “international dumping ground”, because it receives waste from all over the world, from Vietnam, Asia and Europe.


Phuc joked that if Khoai Village did not exist, all Vietnamese people would suffer, because they would have nowhere to throw their waste, especially plastic bags.


Khoai villagers have also created jobs for the residents in many craft villages, including Trieu Khuc and Phung Thuong.


Plastic bags, after being preliminarily treated there, are sold to Khoai Villagers who pay VND2,000 for every kilo.


Khoai villagers not only recycle domestically sourced waste, because limited domestic supply is not enough to feed their large-scale recycling workshops, but also imports.


Therefore, big bales of waste, higher than two-storey buildings, with Japanese, Chinese and Korean words on the packs, can be seen in the village.


Nguyen Dinh Phong, an environment officer with the Nhu Quynh Town People’s Committee, said it was impossible to control the waste imports.


A local resident, when asked why he did not report the pollution to the local authorities and state agencies, said that he did not think the local authorities would be able to stop the recycling workshops that had caused the serious pollution.


“The workshops have produced a lot of billionaires. Therefore, shutting down workshops proves is impossible,” he said.


Lao Dong

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