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Da Nang to Spend $62.5m on Major Project to Combat Beach Pollution

The US$62.5 million project to improve the water environment in Son Tra District received approval from the central city of Da Nang. 

According to Tuoi Tre, a drainage system will be constructed to collect wastewater and some rainwater. It is expected that this will stop rainwater from mixing with untreated wastewater and flowing onto local beaches on rainy days, which can pollute swimming areas.

Huynh Duc Tho, the chairman of the Municipal People's Committee of Da Nang, told the news source that the city wants to separate wastewater and rainwater collection, because the current capacity of the city’s two wastewater treatment plants (Son Tra and Ngu Hanh Son) does not allow for the treatment of both types of water, especially on days with heavy rain.

The project also includes the second stage of upgrading the Son Tra wastewater treatment plant. As a result, its capacity will increase to 40,000 cubic meters on a normal day, and up to 100,000 cubic meters on rainy days. If precipitation exceeds the maximum capacity, rainwater will be automatically pumped into Tho Quang Lock.

The city will also upgrade six coastal floodgates along Hoang Sa and Vo Nguyen Giap streets to prevent seawater and sand from entering the drainage system, VnExpress reports.

Infonet, meanwhile, added that despite the city’s efforts to accelerate the process, it took more than a year for the project to be approved due to complicated procedures. There are also two other projects for collecting wastewater underway, with a total investment of about US$38 million.

To Van Hung, director of the Da Nang Department of Natural Resources and Environment, explained that the three projects implemented in 2019–2020 will help to combat environmental pollution affecting coastal resources. However, the root cause of the problem lies beach-side businesses lacking awareness or taking responsibility. In 2018, there were more than 1,200 businesses along the coast, but only 201 had a license or officially agreed to dispose of wastewater through the city’s drainage system.

On May 6, an individual and a business were fined VND400 million for dumping wastewater that exceeded the permissible limits.

Da Nang is one of the largest cities in Vietnam, as well as a top tourist destination, which attracted 7.7 million tourists, including three million foreigners, last year. According to a report on the city’s wastewater treatment by Fraunhofer, the tourism industry’s economic importance requires beaches and water to be kept clean. Moreover, the increasing problems of water shortage and flooding during rainy season have made effective solutions for drainage and wastewater treatment systems more urgent than ever.

Related Articles:

Infrastructure Strains Flush Polluted Water Straight Into Vietnam's Beaches

New York Times Names Da Nang Among Best Travel Destinations in 2019

Da Nang Is 'Vietnam’s Singapore': Bloomberg 

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