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Saigon Officials Oppose Long An-Based Thermal Power Plant

Plans to construct a thermal power plant in Long An province are facing staunch opposition from Saigon officials due to the proposed facility's close proximity to the southern hub.

According to VietnamNet, the Ministry of Industry and Trade is mulling a US$5 billion thermal power plant in Long An’s Can Giuoc District, just a stone’s throw from Can Gio District in Saigon.

Nothing is set in stone yet as the project is still in the research and site selection stage, however it’s expected to be operational by 2024 and will burn around 10 million tons of coal annually, the news source reports.

The top contender for the plant’s location is Phuoc Vinh Dong commune along the Soai Rap River, as ministry officials want to make use of the waterway to transport coal to the plant. Fuel for the facility will be imported from Australia and Indonesia, VietnamNet shares.

The power plant has also received support from the General Department of Energy and the Ministry of Transport. Saigon authorities, however, have voiced their disapproval of the proposal, citing environmental concerns, reports Zing.

The Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee believes that a coal-fired facility runs the risk of polluting the region with smog, fly ash and industrial sewage. This is especially damaging to Saigon as the metropolis is located downwind of the area, and the majority of Vietnam’s southern regions are affected by the southwest monsoon winds, according to the news source.

Moreover, the proposed site is only separated from Saigon by the Soai Rap River, which could potentially harm Can Gio District’s aquaculture industry.

[Photo via Tai Nguyen & Moi Truong]


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