Vermicelli pollution in Hue city cleaned up

Rice noodle makers in ​Van Cu Village in the central province of T​hua Thien-Hue have built tanks to filter untreated wastewater from the production process (Photo

Thua Thien-Hue (VNS/VNA) – Residents of Van Cu village in
the central province city of Hue have been making rice noodles for some
400 years. But while their livelihoods fared well, their health did not.

Although when served on a plate, bun - also known
as vermicelli – usually smells delicious, the production process in Van Cu
smelled bad for years, the result of wastewater being discharged untreated into
ditches along the roads, ponds and fields. Water in the ditches and ponds
turned black, and families had to keep their doors and windows shut to keep out
the stink.

With households investing in advanced machinery for rice noodle
production, the amount of untreated waste kept growing, said Nguyen Van Xiem, a
local resident said.

“In the past, white foam covered the untreated wastewater surface
from rice noodle production, flowing out to ponds and rice fields. So the smell
was all over the village,” he said. The number of people suffering respiratory
and dermatological diseases was also increasing rapidly, he added.

But in recent years, most households have built tanks to filter
wastewater during the production process before discharging it into the sewage

Nguyen Xuan No, a veteran noodle maker, said his family built two
tanks to filter wastewater, substantially reducing pollution.

Nguyen Van Tich, head of the local traditional craft association,
said the provincial Department of Science and Technology had allocated 2.8
billion VND (123,300 USD) to support households in building wastewater
treatment systems starting in 2012.

Now, 80 percent of households use biogas to treat livestock waste
and the whole village has built filter tanks, he said. “This has become a great
boost for the development of the craft village,” Tich said.

The collection of garbage and plastic bags generated during the
vermicelli production process has also been promoted.

Nearly 50 percent of village households make vermicelli. The
remaining residents participate in the supply of raw materials and marketing
tens of tonnes of noodles each day.-VNA

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