16:21 | 13/05/2015 Science - Technology
(VEN ) - Trade and production activities have caused negative impacts on the environment. Therefore, businesses’ obligatory participation in environmental protection is vital, contributing to limiting those negative impacts.
Following current regulations, environmental impact assessments or environmental protection commitments are one of the required conditions for businesses in receiving investment certificates or building permits.
Decree 29/2011/ND-CP outlines a list of projects that need to make environmental impact assessments or environmental protection commitments including construction, building materials, transport, electronics-telecommunications, engineering, metallurgy and agro-processing. Environmental impact assessments must be submitted and approved by the authorities.
Businesses must comply with the adopted contents in environmental impact assessments or environmental protection commitments. In a case of violations, businesses will be imposed administrative fines or criminal sanctions depending on the level of violations. According to Decree 179/2013/ND-CP on administrative sanctions in environmental protection, businesses could be imposed fines ranging from VND500,000 to VND30 million.
In addition to the obligatory regulations on environmental protection, the state and government have always paid special attention and adopted incentive policies for environmental protection projects as defined in the Law on Corporate Income Tax and Governmental Decree 218/2013/ND-CP dated December 26, 2013. Large-scale waste and wastewater treatment projects in major urban areas and industrial zones or in businesses that have focused on implementing technology innovation and applying cleaner production methods towards sustainable development enjoy more preferential policies in terms of taxes, investment capital and land rents at a higher level.
Additional sanctions needed
According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s statistics, the country currently has 297 industrial zones. Of which, 208 industrial zones have been put into operation, while the remainder is implementing ground clearance compensation and deploying basic construction. Industrial zones throughout the country have contributed to bringing the high value for the economy, but have also posed significant challenges for the sustainability of the environment. In particular, central waste and wastewater treatment systems in industrial zones have not been properly interested.
Among 208 industrial zones that have been put into operation, 158 industrial zones have invested in the construction of central wastewater treatment systems, while the remainder has not yet completed due to limited investment capital and the lack of responsibility for environmental protection activities.
According to the Ministry of Science and Technology, the majority of businesses are still using backward technology. In particular, only 12 percent of the number of businesses has applied advanced technology in production activities. The using of backward technology may cause environmental pollution.
The issue of environmental protection is receiving special attention from state agencies and the community. In recent times, many activities causing environmental pollution by organizations and businesses have been detected and handled by the authorities. And businesses have closed their plants to troubleshoot the problems.
By Quynh Nga