What makes an industrial park clean?

08:00 | 23/09/2021 Environment

(VEN) - Clean industrial parks (IPs) have been established recently in Hanoi, Hung Yen Province and other localities. Although this is a good signal for sustainable industrial development, Vietnam has yet to adopt relevant standards or announce its policy and regulations for clean IPs.

what makes an industrial park clean

Thanh Nam wastewater treatment plant in Khanh Phu IP, Ninh Binh Province is part of an ecological IP project implemented by the MPI

Slow pace

According to the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), 284 IPs are in operation and 86 others are under construction. But in the two decades since the launch of the Cleaner Production Program, the development of IPs has been hampered by environmental challenges caused by waste discharge, requiring drastic changes in the quality of their construction.

In the first half of 2021, the Prime Minister issued several decisions on investment of trillions of dong in clean IP projects, including the Soc Son Clean IP (Soc Son District, Hanoi); a clean IP in Hong Tien Commune, Khoai Chau District and another in Xuan Truc Commune (An Thi District, Hung Yen Province). The aim is to establish new IPs with synchronous infrastructure, ensuring rationality in production, use of technical infrastructure systems and participation in environmental protection. However, clean IPs have not yet been regulated in law or related legal documents, which is a cause of great concern.

So far, Vietnam has regulated the concept of ecological IPs in Decree 82/2018/ND-CP on the management of IPs and economic zones. According to Prof. Dr. Dang Thi Kim Chi, former Deputy Director of the Institute for Environmental Science and Technology, a clean IP is not different from an ecological one, in which businesses are connected to ensure environmental criteria.

A clean IP must not generate waste. According to the law, eco-IPs are those in which enterprises are engaged in cleaner production activities, cooperate in production to improve the socioeconomic and environmental efficiency of enterprises.

Lawyer Truong Thanh Duc, Chair of the BASICO law firm, said that so far there is only one legal concept: eco-IP and one of the criteria for being an eco-IP is “cleanness”. So why is the eco-IPs not used to replace “clean IP” to license projects, he asks.

The Ministry of Planning and Investment is gathering opinions for a draft circular guiding the construction of

eco-IPs and eco-enterprises with criteria for identifying eco-IPs, including certification of enterprises

applying solutions on efficient use of resources and cleaner production, circular solutions and product

changes.

Thu Huong