Vietnam May Charge Env. Fees Based on Waste Amount: Bill

Vietnam’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) is collecting the public opinions on a proposal on forcing locals to pay environmental protection fees depending on their amounts of discharged waste, state media reported. This is part of the draft amended Law on Environmental Protection, which has been introduced to the National Assembly (NA)’s agenda last month. Mr. Nguyen Thuong Hien, deputy head of the Vietnam Environment Administration (VEA), under the MoNRE, said that the current Law on Environmental Protection does not have any regulations on the “polluter-pays principle,” so it fails to encourage people to reduce, reuse, recycle, and classify the waste at source. Currently, everyone pays the same fee regardless of how much waste they produce and discharge. He noted that the draft amendments to the law are expected to solve the shortcomings. According to the VEA, about 61,000 tons of solid waste are discharged in Vietnam daily, 24,000 tons of which are from rural areas. The volume of solid waste increased from 28 million tons in 2009 to 35.7 million tons in 2015 and continues rising by about 10% annually. (Vietnam News, VietnamNews, Thanh Nien, VietnamNet, Nguoi Lao Dong, Dan Tri, Kenh14, QDND, CafeBiz)