Urgent need for law to control water pollution

HA NOI (VNS) –– Formulating a specific law to control water pollution in the country's legislative work programme is a necessary task of State agencies and scientists to ensure national sustainable development.

A consensus on this was reached by participants at a workshop on roles of the Viet Nam Union of Science and Technology Association (VUSTA) and social organisations in setting up a water pollution control law, held in Ha Noi today.

Water pollution can be seen at almost the big and small rivers in Viet Nam, Nguyen Ngoc Ly, director of the Centre for Environmental and Community Research (CECR) said. However, the current Laws on Environmental Protection and Water Resources, which govern this issue, have not yet proved effective in controlling water contamination.

The participants also agreed with the vital roles of environment coalitions and social organisations in setting specific regulations of a proposed law on water pollution management.

The law on promulgation of legal documents, passed in June this year, regulates that during the formulation and promulgation of legal documents, the receipt of and response to public comments and proposals must ensure openness and democracy. This has encouraged the involvement of citizens and social organisations in building a legal framework, enhancing their accountability, feasibility and improving the quality of legal documents.

During the workshop, Nghiem Vu Khai, VUSTA vice president, pledged the commitment of VUSTA and its member organisations to continue to lobby for the law and conduct research on environment impacts as well as prepare proposals for the law.

"To build an effective law, we must set standards on the level of water pollution. In addition, it is important to build an environmental monitoring system and put forward solutions to ensure criteria on clean water. The basic solutions include clarifying the rights and responsibilities of individuals and organisations, and to apply eco-friendly technology," Khai said.

Formulating the law needs a long time, and a scientific and legal foundation, Nguyen Ngoc Ly said, and added that the support and involvement of the State, ministries, sectors, enterprises and localities also play a key role.

According to her, the establishment of a law on water pollution control will support the Laws on Environmental Protection and Water Resources. While the Law on Environmental Protection plays a role as a general legal framework, the Law on Water Resources involves effective use of water resources. The law on water pollution control is expected to focus on measures to manage water pollution on the shores to prevent contaminated water from running into lakes and rivers, she said.

Ly said that the draft proposals of the law on water pollution control are scheduled to be completed by the end of next year. ­­–– VNS

Source URL: Vietnam News