BÌNH THUẬN — Electricity of Việt Nam’s (EVN) Power Generation Corporation 3 (EVNGENCO 3) is submitting an application for a licence to dump waste mud into the sea off the coast of Bình Thuận Province, a company official has said.
The company is meant to dump 2.4 million cu.m. of mud into the sea area in Vĩnh Tân Commune, Tuy Phong District.
The dumping location is 10km from the Hòn Cau Marine Protected Area (MPA).
Lê Trung Hiếu, the company’s chief officer, said the mud was collected from dredging canals and quays to build a 100,000 tonne-port for importing coal from Indonesia and Australia to serve three Vĩnh Tân thermal power plants.
However, as of July 8, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) had not received any application from EVNGENCO 3 to dump the “materials,” MONRE Deputy Minister Nguyễn Ngọc Linh said.
Previously, the MONRE had granted a licence to Vĩnh Tân 1 Power Company – investor of Vĩnh Tân Thermal Power Plant – to dump 1.5 million cu.m. of mud and waste sand into the sea in Vĩnh Tân Commune of Bình Thuận Province.
The dumping area is 30ha and 8km away from the Hòn Cau MPA.
The sediment consisted mostly of sand, seashells, gravel, clay and mud.
Mud dumping in the ocean is disapproved by experts and the public, who fear that the dredging and dumping will impact the marine ecosystem, compromise the MPA’s integrity and affect marine resources and local aquaculture production.
Stretching on a 12,500ha area, the Hòn Cau MPA is surrounded by thousands of cliff rocks of different colours and shapes.
The rich marine ecosystem in Hòn Cau has all the specific characteristics of a tropical marine region -- a variety of multiple-coloured coral, seagrass beds, valuable and rare marine organisms, etc.
Established in September 2012, Hòn Cau MPA is one of 16 marine protected areas in Việt Nam, based on the approval of Prime Minister.
This marine protected area’s aim is to maintain and preserve marine resources and biodiversity, protect the communities of marine creatures and ecological environment, develop ecological economics, maintain the subsistence of residents, and manage and sustainably exploit aquatic resources. — VNS