Marine environment in four central provinces should be surveyed again

Participants in the 9th meeting of the APEC Ocean and Fisheries Working Group pose for a joint photo (Photo: VNA) Can Tho (VNA) – The APEC Ocean and Fisheries Working Group (OFWG) opened its ninth annual meeting in Can Tho city on August 21 to discuss a common action plan for the APEC economies and regional and global cooperation activities to sustainably develop fisheries and sea- and ocean-related fields. The meeting is part of the APEC Food Security Week and a high level policy dialogue on enhancing food security and sustainable agriculture in response to climate change in the Mekong Delta city. At the event, delegates from the 21 APEC economies focus their discussions on the region’s common action plan on ensuring sustainable use and development of fisheries resources in Asia-Pacific, the improvement of coastal communities’ resilience to natural disasters, and the enhancement of the economies’ connectivity to protect the marine environment and effectively exploit ocean resources. They are scheduled to update on the implementation of some initiatives in promoting the marine debris treatment capacity, build a set of tools to assess ecological risks caused by climate change impacts on fisheries, and look for ways to attract the private sector to marine environment protection and sustainable livelihood and fisheries promotion. Tran Dinh Luan, Deputy General Director of the Directorate of Fisheries under Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said the APEC members account for more than 80 percent of the aquaculture output and over…... [read more]

The Prime Minister has signed decisions to apply disciplinary measures on four former leaders of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and the central province of Ha Tinh, whose violations are linked to the serious environmental incident caused by Formosa Ha Tinh in the four central localities. Vo Kim Cu In Decision 1199/QD-TTg, Nguyen Minh Quang, former MoNRE Minister in the 2011-2016 period, received warnings. Meanwhile, Nguyen Thai Lai and Bui Cach Tuyen are no longer former MoNRE Deputy Ministers for the 2011-2015 tenure under Decision 1201/QD-TTg and Decision 1202/QD-TTg. Under Decision 1200/QD-TTg, the PM decided to strip Vo Kim Cu off the position of former Vice Chairman of the People’s Committee of Ha Tinh province in the 2005-2010 tenure and former Chairman of the Ha Tinh People’s Committee in the 2010-2015 tenure. The mass fish deaths were first reported on April 6, 2016 when a large number of fish washed ashore in Ha Tinh province. The incident also occurred in Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue. About 70 tonnes of dead fish were found in the four provinces and Thua Thien-Hue alone reported 35 tonnes of farm-raised fish had died. The pollution also affected more than 260,000 people who earned their living from the sea. Wastewater discharged from Formosa polluted more than 200 kilometres of coastline, devastating the marine environment and local economies of those provinces, which largely rely on fishing and tourism. In June last year, Formosa accepted responsibility for the incident and pledged 500…... [read more]

Vo Kim Cu (Photo: VNA) Hanoi (VNA) – The Prime Minister has signed decisions to apply disciplinary measures on four former leaders of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and the central province of Ha Tinh, whose violations are linked to the serious environmental incident caused by Formosa Ha Tinh in the four central localities. In Decision 1199/QD-TTg, Nguyen Minh Quang, former MoNRE Minister in the 2011-2016 period, received warnings. Meanwhile, Nguyen Thai Lai and Bui Cach Tuyen are no longer former MoNRE Deputy Ministers for the 2011-2015 tenure under Decision 1201/QD-TTg and Decision 1202/QD-TTg. Under Decision 1200/QD-TTg, the PM decided to strip Vo Kim Cu off the position of former Vice Chairman of the People’s Committee of Ha Tinh province in the 2005-2010 tenure and former Chairman of the Ha Tinh People’s Committee in the 2010-2015 tenure. The mass fish deaths were first reported on April 6, 2016 when a large number of fish washed ashore in Ha Tinh province. The incident also occurred in Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue. About 70 tonnes of dead fish were found in the four provinces and Thua Thien-Hue alone reported 35 tonnes of farm-raised fish had died. The pollution also affected more than 260,000 people who earned their living from the sea. Wastewater discharged from Formosa polluted more than 200 kilometres of coastline, devastating the marine environment and local economies of those provinces, which largely rely on fishing and…... [read more]

A caged fish farm (Photo: VNA) Thua Thien – Hue (VNA) -  The total output of farmed and off-shore caught fish of the central province of Thua Thien-Hue reached 30,388 tonnes in the last seven months, showing a year-on-year increase of 18.72 percent. Of the figure, over 20,286 tonnes were caught from sea, up 28.4 percent. Seafood export earned the province around 16 million USD, up 2.1 times. These figures showed the recovery of the locality’s aquaculture and fishing activities after the marine environmental incident last year. As many as 1.01 trillion VND (nearly 44.44 million USD) of compensation from the incident’s doer has been handed over to 41,766 locals from 28 affected coastal communes and townships. In the coming time, the localities will continue assisting those who wish to switch jobs, developing offshore catch and fish farming, towards enabling the locals to secure sustainable livelihoods. The natural resource and environment sector will strengthen marine environment monitoring work to better serve local aquaculture. The mass fish deaths were first reported on April 6, 2016 when a large number of fish washed ashore in Ha Tinh province. The incident also occurred in Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue. About 70 tonnes of dead fish were found in the four provinces and Thua Thien-Hue alone reported 35 tonnes of farm-raised fish had died. The pollution also affected more than 260,000 people who earn their living from the sea. In June last…... [read more]

At the two forums held in Manila from October 3-5, ASEAN and its partners discussed ways of promoting regional maritime security and cooperation, combating piracy, strengthening maritime connectivity, training seamen, protecting the marine environment and boosting eco-tourism and fishery operations. They agreed to take advantage of maritime cooperation opportunities to enhance mutual confidence in maintaining peace, stability, maritime security and safety in the region. They underlined the need to respect international law and relevant documents including the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation (TAC) and the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC). All disputes should be settled by peaceful means to prevent them from escalating into conflicts, they stressed. The participants reviewed the results of regional maritime security cooperation at the first and second AMFs and agreed to enhance ASEAN’s central role in the expanded ASEAN Maritime Forum (EAMF). At the EAMF, the countries discussed the role of the UNCLOS which serves as a legal foundation for ensuring the code of conduct and dealing with disputes and maritime cooperation. Some ASEAN countries proposed organizing training courses, building a legal framework for fishing industry and increasing legal cooperation in combating piracy, protecting the environment and developing sea tourism. In his speech, Deputy FM Vinh presented Vietnam’s stance on boosting regional maritime cooperation based on international law and the UNCLOS for the benefit of each nation as well as the whole region. He stressed ASEAN’s central role…... [read more]

This Convention now became the primary instrument governing the conduct of States in their uses of the ocean. The adoption of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea met the desire and expectations of the international community for a fair international legal framework related all issues on the sea and ocean, including seabed and the subsoil of the submarine areas. The process of negotiation of the UNCLOS took years to be completed with efforts of over 150 states and international organizations, including NGOs. To date, 164 States are party to the UNCLOS. The UNCLOS is a constitutive multilateral treaty, setting out the rights and obligations of States and other international actors in different maritime areas and in relation to various uses of the ocean. Therefore, the Convention is accepted by such a large number of states, including land-locked ones. The UNCLOS laid the foundation for the establishment of a new legal order for issues related to the sea and ocean. It comprehensively covers all sea-related areas, taking into account the interests of all states in the world, be they developed or developing, large or small, coastal or land-locked. Since its entry into force on November 16, 1994, the UNCLOS has become an important legal basis for regulating maritime issues as well as an important legal instrument for settling and dealing with sea-related disputes. That is why the UNCLOS is considered as “A Constitution for the Oceans”. Throughout its 30 years of existence, the UNCLOS has been…... [read more]

This is one of five tasks the Vietnam Administration of Seas and Islands has put forward in its international marine cooperation programme until 2020. Since early this year, the administration has sped up modernisation of marine surveying work to meet the requirements of the marine-based economy in the first decades of the 21st century. It has updated technology, applied new scientific and technological advances, and increased the quality of surveying, observation and forecasting skills to serve socio-economic development and national defence. The administration is currently working on a project to set up a data bank on the natural resources and environment of seas and islands, which will be used to minimise the effects of climate change and rising sea levels. The agency has signed and implemented bilateral and multilateral memorandums of understanding on marine environment-related issues with the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the Republic of Korea’s Coast Guard, Russia’s Pacific Research Institute of Fishery and Oceanography, and the RoK Minerals and Geography Institute.... [read more]

He praised Prof. Hens for his great contributions to the city, which promote the northern port city of Vietnam to international friends. Over the past 10 years, Prof. Luc Hens has made active contributions to the city’s environmental protection, including scientific research and study on implementation and consultation in the field to serve the city’s socio-economic development plan. He has presided over projects, sponsored by the European Committee and Belgium, to develop scientific equipment and train staff for the city’s environmental management. Prof. Hens and scientists from the City’s Institute of Marine Environment and Resources has published more than 10 studies and articles on environmental protection and general planning of seaports to help the city protect the environment and develop seaport services.... [read more]

This is part of a project funded by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to build a global action programme (GAP) to protect the marine environment from land-based activities. According to current statistics, about 50-70 percent of waste discharged into the sea comes from the mainland. Dr. Nguyen Van Cu, head of the VietnamSea and Island General Department, emphasised that it is essential to manage waste discharge in coastal areas. This is a difficult task that requires joint efforts by functional agencies, he said. To reduce sea pollution, the VietnamSea and Island General Department is cooperating with international donors on technical assistance projects like this one. The General Department aims to evaluate the waste discharge from the mainland into the sea, build a national action plan on waste management, and implement a pilot project in Ha Long Bay in Quang Ninh province. Razi Latif, an expert from UNEP, says GAP is a global project that is being carried out in Vietnam to help the country protect the marine environment and reduce sea pollution.... [read more]

Local authorities turn “a deaf ear” to proposals on sea protection At a meeting with the press, Truong Kinh, Director of the Nha Trang Bay Marine Protected Area (MPA) said the MPA has almost no voice on issues relating to the economic development of the locality. “Our proposals on sea protection have been ignored when localities grant investment licenses to tourism projects,” Kinh said. “Especially, in the eyes of investors, we are like a big hindrance for their investment projects, while in the eyes of many local people, we are an obstacle for local economic development,” he added. Also according to Kinh, as for the tourism, resort and hotel projects on Hon Tre Island, located in the territory of the MPA, the MPA’s management board “cannot lay a hand on the projects.” It cannot carry out the management work within its own jurisdiction. The investors said “don’t poke your nose into others’ business,” arguing that they do not have to consult with the MPA, they just have to follow business law. The project on Nha Trang sea conservation, as Kinh pointed out, cannot meet the requirements for regional sea protection. “Our suggestions about policies to be applied to the MPA have always been put aside, because policy makers do not understand them, while leaders also do not understand,” Kinh complained. When the project on Nha Trang Bay preservation entered the second phase (2006-2011), the steering committee at the provincial level did not continue operation. As a result, the link between…... [read more]




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