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  • Fukushima tròn 6 năm thảm họa   10/03/2017 Thục Quyên (Save Vietnam's Nature) - Nhật báo Mainichi chào đón ngày 11/03/2017, ngày kỷ niệm tròn 6 năm thảm họa hạt nhân tại nhà ...
    Veröffentlicht um 09.03.2017, 15:37 von Save Vietnam's Nature
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WIND ENERGY IN VIETNAM – BLOWING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION?
23.08.2017 by David Foxwell (Offshore Wind Journal) - To encourage the development of wind power projects the Vietnamese government introduced a feed-in tariff (FIT) scheme back in 2011. The FIT of VND1,614/kWh (excluding VAT, equivalent to US$0.078) was seen at the time as an important step towards realising the country’s renewable energy ambitions.
The low rate, however, has proved unappealing to investors. Despite a range of tax benefits offered to developers, including exemptions from customs duties, a preferential corporate tax rate of 10% and income tax and land use fee exemptions, Vietnam has just four operational windfarms. [read more]

ENERGY DILEMMA WEIGHS ON VIETNAM
21.08.2017 By Dan Southerland (Asia Times) - State planners say more than 50% of national power will be coal-fired by 2030, a big boost in the fossil fuel's use that will worsen pollution and undercut climate change goals
As a rapidly industrializing nation, Vietnam needs more electricity for both industries and homes.In order to reach its goal for 2030, Vietnam will not only build more coal-fired power plants but also is likely to import more of the fuel. Chinese companies appear ready to supply Vietnam with both coal and equipment, even as China closes some of its own coal-fired plants at home. [read more]

HOW CLIMATE CHANGE IS ALREADY DISRUPTING LIVES IN VIETNAM’S MEKONG DELTA
18.08.2017 (Climate Change News) - Climate change its causing flooding and droughts that damage agricultural land in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam. The "rice bowl" of Asia produces 57 percent of rice production for the country - including 80 percent of its exports. ROBYN WILSON met the farmers facing ruin.
Farmers in the tropical southern region of Vietnam’s Mekong Delta today continue to build dams around their fields to protect the land from severe weather. [read more / watch video clips]

CHURCH AGAINST THE POLLUTION OF MONTAGNARD WATER RESOURCES IN KON TUM
17.08.2017 Nguyen Hung (AsiaNews) - Hanoi – In Vietnam’s mountainous Central Highlands (Tây Nguyên), water pollution is a serious threat to the environment and to health of the local indigenous population, the Montagnards.
The diocese of Kon Tum, whose territory includes the homonymous province and that of Gialai, is involved in a number of social and charitable activities to counter the problem. [read more]

'WE ARE JOBLESS BECAUSE OF FISH POISONING': VIETNAMESE FISHERMEN BATTLE FOR JUSTICE
14.08.2017 (The Guardian) - A year after Vietnam’s worst environmental disaster, lives remain ruined while the government cracks down on protesters seeking compensation.
“Before the marine disaster happened, I could earn up to 15m Vietnamese dongs [£500],” reflects Nguyen. “But after, I didn’t sell any fish at all. I was sick of my profession.”
He moors and ties his small boat in the dock of Tan An village. Today, he has caught nothing.
Anger has been growing over the government’s handling of what is thought to be the country’s worst environmental disaster – affecting 450 hectares (1,112 acres) of coral reefs, of which about half were totally destroyed.
Slow government response and denials of wrongdoing sparked angry protests not often seen in four decades of Communist party rule. [read more]

INTERVIEW: ' WE ARE IN A VERY UNFAVORABLE SITUATION'
14.08.2017 (RFA) - Vinh Diocese Bishop Nguyen Thai Hop led a delegation this month from his coastal region of Vietnam to Taiwan, home to Formosa Plastics Group's headquarters to seek redress for local fishermen affected by a marine disaster of April 2016. The toxic spill from a Formosa steel plant in central Vietnam polluted more than 125 miles of coastline along four coastal provinces and killed an estimated 115 tons of fish and left fishermen and tourism industry workers jobless. He spoke to RFA's Vietnamese service about his visit to Taiwan.
RFA: Tell us about your recent visit to Taiwan.
Bishop Nguyen Thai Hop: Our Marine Disaster Victim Support Committee has three or four people and there are also some others who currently live in Taiwan. In Taiwan, we met some lawyers, professors and members of civil society who are also in the process of litigation over the environmental disasters that Formosa caused in Taiwan itself over the years. I was so excited and happy about that trip. I also visited some villages which looked desolated and abandoned. Most of them are directly affected by the smoke from Formosa. What a tragedy when you actually get to see it! There were Taiwanese people, who perhaps were misinformed by Formosa. that the Vietnamese government forced Formosa to pay $500 million to people in Ky Anh, Vung Ang. Formosa tried to turn themselves into a victim.  We explained that the Vietnamese government is cooperating with Formosa to alleviate the impact, moreover that many times the government has repressed supporters of the victims of Formosa. [read more]

MILLIONS OF CUBIC METRES OF TOXIC MUD DUMPED INTO THE SEA
04.08.2017 Thanh Thuy (AsiaNews) - Ho Chi Minh City – Millions of cubic metres of toxic mud are being “sunk” at sea. Indifferent to the consequences for human health, provincial authorities in Binh Thuận, southern Vietnam, have allowed the Electricity Group of Viêt Nam (EVN) to contaminate the waters off the coast of Vĩnh Tân, through this 'innovative' method of waste disposal.
On 13 July 2017, Mr Phạm, deputy director general of the Department of Sea and Islands at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, told the local People's Council that "the Vinh Tân 1 Electricity Company was authorised to 'sink' about a million of cubic metres of toxic mud into the sea at Vĩnh Tân."
Prof Lê Anh, deputy director of the Institute for Research on Climate Change at Cần Thơ University, slammed the government for its complicity in this.
"The authorities call this system of disposal ‘toxic waste immersion', but in fact it is no more than dumping at sea. The law is very vague on this subject. In the specific case, we are talking about tropical waters, rich in resources, delicate and very vulnerable." [read more]

EN VIETNAM CENTRAL, ‘SEPULTAN’ EN EL MAR MILLONES DE METROS CÚBICOS DE LODO TÓXICO
04.08.2017 Thanh Thuy (AsiaNews) - Ho Chi Minh City – Millones de metros cúbicos de lodo tóxico son “sepultados” en el mar. Despreocupándose por las consecuencias que esto pueda tener sobre la salud y sobre la vida de los ciudadanos, las autoridades de la provincia centro-meridional de Bình Thuận permiten que las plantas de la empresa Electricity Group of Viêt Nam (Evn) contaminen las aguas del mar de Vĩnh Tân, a través de este ‘innovador’ método de eliminación de residuos.
El 13 de julio de 2017, el Sr. Phạm, vice director general del Departamento del Mar e Islas, del Ministerio de Recursos Naturales y Medio Ambiente, informó al Consejo de pueblo del ámbito provincial  que “se concedió el permiso para que la compañía de electricidad de Vinh Tân 1 pueda ‘sumergir cerca de un millón de metros cúbicos de lodo tóxico en el mar de  Vĩnh Tân”.
El Prof. Lê Anh, vice director del Instituto de investigación sobre cambio climático de la  Cần Thơ University, protesta por la complicidad mostrada por el gobierno y afirma: “A este sistema de eliminación de residuos las autoridades lo llaman ‘inmersión de residuos tóxicos’, pero de hecho, no es otra cosa que una simple descarga en el mar. [seguir leyendo]

“WE CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE,” SAYS VIETNAMESE YOUTH

27.07.2017 Peace Parks Foundation (National Geographic) - The continued senseless killing of African rhino for their horn, is driven by the demand for horn in primary consumer countries in Asia, such as Vietnam and China. More than 90% of horn goes to or through Vietnam. With the older generations for the most part set in their ways, much hope lies with changing the hearts and minds of the 10-24 year olds who make up almost 25% of Vietnam’s 94 million population. The Wild Rhino demand reduction campaign focusses on tapping into these young minds and motivating change before it is too late.
Realising the challenge that lies ahead for the next generation of Vietnamese in halting illegal rhino horn trade in their country, the Wild Rhino campaign reaches out to schools in Ho Chi Minh City with initiatives that aim to educate, empower, awaken and inspire. Tweet this
This campaign is implemented in 11 international schools throughout the city by Wilderness Foundation Africa, in partnership with Peace Parks Foundation, Olsen Animal Trust, and Soul Music and Performing Arts Academy. [read more]

HO CHI MINH CITY FACES HIGH RISKS OF LAND EROSION IN RAINY SEASON
27.07.2017 (Bernama) --Ho Chi Minh City faces high risks of land erosion in the rainy season due to invasion of river banks, canals and illegal sand mining, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
The threat is compounded with climate change causing rains, storms and rising sea levels, it added.
Fast urbanisation has made the invasion of canals and rivers more severe. [read more]

POLLUTION DE L'AIR : LE VIETNAM VEUT INTERDIRE LES DEUX ROUES À MOTEUR À HANOÏ
22.07.2017 (Sud Ouest) - Initiative radicale au Vietnam pour lutter contre la pollution de l'air : le 4 juillet, les autorités ont annoncé leur volonté d’interdire les mobylettes et motos d’ici à 2030 à Hanoï. Dans une ville où l’essentiel du trafic se fait à deux-roues, la mesure fait tousser et les réactions, en s'en doute, sont mitigées. Mais ne pas les prendre, ferait tousser la population bien davantage. Au sens propre du terme.
Au Vietnam, l'un des pays d’Asie du Sud-Est qui compte le plus de deux-roues, Hanoï est connu pour ses légions de mobylettes pétaradant aux feux rouges. Dans une ville où les transports en commun sont peu développés, la mobylette fait office de voiture familiale (avec les enfants entassés entre les deux parents). [en savoir plus]

VIETNAM POLLUTION FIGHT HITS SUPPLIER TO GLOBAL FASHION BRANDS
21.07.2017 Mai Nguyen (Reuters) - HANOI - Vietnamese villagers blockading a textile plant that serves global fashion brands are seeking the permanent closure of the factory due to pollution concerns, highlighting a growing readiness in Vietnam to campaign over environmental issues.
Hundreds of people from Hai Duong, 50 km (30 miles) east of Hanoi, have kept watch in shifts day and night since April to stop work at the Pacific Crystal Textiles mill, operated by Hong Kong-based Pacific Textiles. [read more]

GEMÜSE AUS ASIEN MIT WAHREN GIFTCOCKTAILS AN DER GRENZE ABGEFANGEN
19.07.2017 (Blick) - Gemüse aus Asien enthält mitunter wahre Giftcocktails. Auch 2016 musste bei Kontrollen an der Grenze fast ein Drittel der Proben wegen überhöhten Pestizidgehalts beanstandet werden. Kritisch waren vor allem Produkte aus Thailand und Vietnam wie Koriander und Chilis.
Schon frühere Untersuchungen auf Pflanzenschutzmittel-Rückstände hatten bei Grünzeug aus asiatischen Ländern Beanstandungsraten von 20 bis 53 Prozent ergeben. Das Bundesamt für Lebensmittelsicherheit und Veterinärwesen (BLV) hat deshalb erneut eine nationale Einfuhrkontrolle für Frischgemüse und Früchte aus Asien organisiert. [Weiterlesen]

REPORT: ASIA FACING DIRE FUTURE TOLL FROM CLIMATE CHANGE
14.07.2017 (AP) - A report by the Asia Development Bank says Asia will endure extreme heat, rising sea levels, growing losses from severe weather and increasing food insecurity in coming decades as climate change raises temperatures and alters weather patterns across the globe.
The survey released Friday by the Manila-based lender paints a grim outlook for many communities in Asia, home to about 4 billion people.
It's based on the latest scientific research, with or without more aggressive efforts to curb carbon emissions that contribute to global warming. [read more]

CHINA, VIETNAM AND HARD TALK ABOUT THE MEKONG: CHINA DAILY COLUMNIST
27.06.2017 By Asit K Biswas, Cecilia Tortajada (The Nation) - Much has been written about the building of hydropower dams in the upper reaches of the Mekong River and their role in causing droughts in the Mekong delta region in Vietnam.
Many environmental and social activists claim Chinese dams have reduced the water flow in the delta, seriously harming rice cultivation and allowing saltwater to seep into soil.
Closer scrutiny of the facts reveals that drought dealt a serious blow to Vietnam’s agriculture and forestry and seafood sectors in the delta region last year. Official data show the growth rate in these sectors was only 1.36 per cent in 2016, the lowest since 2011. The drought also had major economic, social and environmental impacts as it severely affected Vietnam’s coffee, rice and shrimp production and exports.
There are many reasons why Vietnam is facing serious water scarcity. First is climate change. [read more]

S. KOREA TO STOP CONSTRUCTION OF 2 NUCLEAR REACTORS WHILE DECIDES FATE
27.06.2017 (The Asahi Shimbun) - SEOUL--South Korea's government said on Tuesday it would suspend construction of two partially completed nuclear reactors while it gathers public opinion on the facilities and decides whether they should be scrapped.
The government said in a statement that it would form a committee that would spend about three months deciding whether or not construction of the plants should continue.
The move comes after the country's new president, Moon Jae-in, said South Korea would stop building new nuclear power plants and not extend the lifespan of old reactors to address public concerns over atomic safety. [read more]

TIERSCHÜTZER RETTEN MISSHANDELTE BÄREN
27.06.2017 (NZZ) - (dpa) Wie die Mitarbeiter der Organisation «Animals Asia» am Dienstag mitteilten, sind die Tiere im Süden Vietnams in einer sogenannten Bärenfarm über ein Jahrzehnt festgehalten worden. Sie seien inzwischen in ein Tierheim gebracht worden.
Häufig werden Schwarzbären in Asien gehalten, um ihnen Gallenflüssigkeit zu entnehmen. Bärengalle gilt als begehrtes Heilmittel in der chinesischen Medizin, ihr Nutzen ist umstritten. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM SACKS SENIOR ENVIRONMENT OFFICIAL OVER TOXIC LEAK THAT CAUSED MASS KILLING OF FISH
21.06.2017 (The Straits Times) - HANOI (AFP) - A senior Vietnamese environment official has been fired for negligence over a toxic waste dump that killed tonnes of fish in a major environmental crisis last year, according to officials and state media.
Luong Duy Hanh, director of Vietnam's Environment Protection Management Department, is the latest official to be punished over the toxic leak, which was blamed on a multi-billion dollar steel plant run by the Taiwanese firm Formosa. [read more]

UPSTREAM PROJECTS RISK MEKONG DELTA DISASTER
16.06.2017 By Pratch Rujivanarom (The Nation) - FEARS are rising in the Mekong Delta in southern Vietnam about food and social insecurity caused by hydropower dams and water-diversion projects planned or already started further upstream.
The delta has an extensive system of canals and green paddy fields that stretches for kilometres, creating a part of the world that seems blessed with abundance like a virtual Garden of Eden. Local people are down-to-earth, but troubled by the increasingly frequent and serious saltwater intrusion, which destroys their crops, while the riverbanks and seashore are eroding at an alarming rate.
One farmer in Kien Giang province, who asked to be known just as “Tron”, told reporters on a recent field trip that her farm was threatened by saltwater intrusion and erosion every year – and the problems seemed to be getting worse. [read more]

VIETNAM'S SOLAR ENERGY PUSH DRAWS INVESTORS
16.06.2017 (Nikkei Asian Review) - Vietnam's TTC Group is planning to sink about $1 billion into solar energy projects in a country still dependent on coal-fired thermal and hydro power for its power needs, with national electricity demand growing faster than 10% annually.
TTC Group, a sugar, energy and real estate conglomerate, said it plans to build as many as 20 solar parks with a total capacity of 1,000 megawatts by next year. The group executed a number of clean energy projects using sugarcane waste before moving into the solar sector. [read more]

ASAHI GLASS TARGETS ASIA WITH SOLAR-CELL WINDOWS
13.06.2017 Keiichi Furukawa (Nikkei Asian Review) - TOKYO -- Asahi Glass is setting out to export a construction-use glass product embedded with solar cells to meet Asia's growing power-conservation needs.
Sunjoule has solar cells sandwiched between layers of glass and can be installed just about anywhere normal glass would be used.
The company aims to install Sunjoule in government buildings, hospitals and public facilities and expects demand for Sunjoule to be supported by Cambodia's low rate of electricity self-sufficiency, which stands at just over 70%. The country relies on power supplied from Thailand and Vietnam for the rest of its energy needs. [read more]

PROSPER OR PERISH: TIME FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT
09.06.2017 By Neeta Lal (Asia Sentinel) - With US President Donald Trump’s walkout of the Paris Deal, the agreement that aims to keep planetary warming by 2030 below the 2°C rise ceiling, the debate about sustainable development has gained increased traction, with advocates directly contradicting the president and saying it could generate millions of jobs. In this new development model, the United States, by hewing to outdated legacy technologies, risks being left behind.
A pioneering report issued this week – Better Business, Better World – by the Business & Sustainable Development Commission (BSDC), points out that business leaders and entrepreneurs can unlock market opportunities worth US$5 trillion and generate 230 million jobs in Asia by 2030 by following sustainable business models. [read more]

EXPLOSION AT VIETNAMESE STEEL PLANT
01.06.2017 (Financial Tribune) - An explosion rocked Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics Group's new steel plant in Vietnam late on Tuesday, a day after it resumed test operations for the first time since causing one of the country's worst environmental disasters.
"The so-called dust explosion was caused by the combustion of fine particles in the air as a result of an equipment malfunction," Chang Fu-ning, an executive vice president of Formosa Ha Tinh Steel, told Reuters.
The Formosa Ha Tinh Steel plant spilled toxic waste that polluted more than 200 km (125 miles) of Vietnam's coastline in 2016, devastating sea life and local economies dependent on fishing and tourism. [read more]

EXPLOSION IN WIEDERERÖFFNETER STAHLFABRIK IN VIETNAM
31.05.2017 (Westfällische Rundschau) - HANOI.  Kurz nach Wiedereröffnung einer Fabrik im Vietnamesischen Ha Tinh kam es zu einer Explosion. 2016 war aus der Fabrik Abwasser ins Meer gelangt.
Sie war nach einem Fischsterben geschlossen worden, nun hat eine Explosion eine erst kürzlich wiedereröffnete Stahlfabrik in Vietnam erschüttert. In dem Unternehmen Formosa Ha Tinh Steel in der nördlichen Provinz Ha Tinh sei ein Kalkofen explodiert, berichteten örtliche Medien am Mittwoch.
Im Frühjahr 2016 war aus der Fabrik unbehandeltes Abwasser ins Meer gelangt, wie die Behörden später feststellten. Hunderte Tonnen Fisch verendeten damals. Die Fabrik war erst seit Montag wieder in Betrieb. [Weiterlesen]

POLICE-HIRED ‘THUGS’ BEAT VIETNAMESE ANTI-FORMOSA CATHOLICS
31.05.2017 (RFA) - Hundreds of “thugs” hired by authorities in Vietnam’s central Nghe An province over the weekend severely beat a group of Catholic parishioners, including women and children, that had protested the government’s handling of a toxic waste spill, sending dozens to the hospital, according to sources.
Members of Phu Yen and Van Thai sub-parishes, under Song Ngoc parish in Nghe An’s Quynh Luu district, told RFA’s Vietnamese Service they were attacked after gathering at the Son Hai commune People’s Committee on May 28 to retrieve a fellow parishioner who had been detained earlier by police. [read more]

TAIWAN STEEL PLANT OPENS IN VIETNAM AFTER FISH DEATHS
30.05.2017 (Channel NewsAsia) - HANOI: A Taiwanese steel firm behind a toxic waste dump that killed tonnes of fish in Vietnam last year started operations on Monday (May 29), state media in Hanoi reported.
The incident was one of the worst environmental disasters in Vietnam, decimating livelihoods along the central coast and sparking angry protests that continue today.
"If any incident occurs then we will stop operations immediately," said Hoang Duong Tung, deputy director of Vietnam's Environment Administration, quoted by VNA.
Fishermen have continued to protest in central Vietnam, demanding greater compensation for the disaster, while some say they have still not been paid. [read more]

VIETNAMS KAMPF GEGEN DEN KLIMAWANDEL
28.05.2017 (Inforadio) - Mehr als 245 Millionen Menschen werden weltweit mit Reis aus dem Mekong-Delta versorgt. Das macht Vietnam zum zweitgrößten Reisexporteur der Welt. Doch die Küstenregion kämpft wie kaum eine andere mit den Folgen des Klimawandels, die auch die Reisernte bedrohen.  Im Gespräch mit Gabriele Heuser berichtet Jochem Lange, Landesdirektor der GIZ in Vietnam, über die derzeitigen Herausforderungen und Aussichten für das Land.
Durch den stetigen Anstieg des Meeresspiegels leiden in Vietnam einige Küstenabschnitte inzwischen unter Erosionen von bis zu 30 Metern im Jahr. Die Mangrovenwälder entlang der Küste, die das Hinterland vor Überschwemmungen und Stürmen schützen, gehen dramatisch zurück, unter anderem weil die Bäume als Brennholz genutzt wurden.  Verschärfend kam 2016 im Mekong-Delta die schlimmste Dürre seit 90 Jahren hinzu. Gemeinsam mit dem steigenden Meeresspiegel trug  sie zu einer starken Versalzung in den Reisanbaugebieten bei. [Weiterlesen]

BÄRENGALLE - EIN DUBIOSES HEILMITTEL UND SEINE OPFER
26.05.2017 Von: Bennett Murray und Bac Pham (Der Farang) - HANOI (dpa) - In Asien floriert das Geschäft mit der Galle von Bären - ein Heilmittel der traditionellen chinesischen Medizin. Trotz Verbots werden in Vietnam immer noch Tiere gequält.
Eine Zierpflanzen-Plantage in Nordvietnam, Provinz Ninh Binh. In der Dunkelheit einer Hütte stehen vier enge Käfige, nur ein paar Quadratmeter groß. In jedem lebt ein asiatischer Schwarzbär, auch Kragenbär genannt. [Weiterlesen]

KLARES JA ZU ATOMAUSSTIEG IN DER SCHWEIZ
21.05.2017 Klaus Bonanomi aus Bern (derStandard) - Die Schweizer stimmten für ein neues Energiegesetz, das den Bau neuer Atommeiler verbietet und Förderungen für erneuerbare Energien erhöht.
Sechs Jahre nach Fukushima ist nun auch politisch klar: In der Schweiz hat die Atomkraft ausgedient. Die Schweiz setzt in Zukunft auf mehr erneuerbare Energien und auf Energieeffizienz statt auf Kernenergie. Die Grünen feiern dies als "großartigen Erfolg", während die SVP und einige liberale Politiker vor Versorgungslücken und hohen Kosten warnen. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM MAINTAINS BAN ON DEEP-WATER FISHING IN POLLUTED AREA
18.05.2017 (AP) - HANOI, Vietnam -- Vietnam is maintaining the ban on deep-water fishing in four central provinces one year after a Taiwanese-owned steel plant discharged toxins into the sea and caused the country's worst environmental disaster.
State-run Tuoi Tre newspaper on Thursday quoted Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh as saying fishermen should not fish for seafood in deep water within 20 nautical miles from the coast in the four provinces until the Ministry of Health finds it safe to eat and maritime resources restored.
The $10.6 billion steel complex, which includes a steel plant, a power plant and a deep sea port in Ha Tinh province owned by Formosa Plastics Group, discharged toxins such as cyanide and phenol that exceeded allowable limits during a test run in April last year. [read more]

LAWMAKERS URGED TO PROMOTE PROPER SOLUTIONS TO CLIMATE CHANGE
12.05.2017 (Bernama) -- HO CHI MINH CITY - Delegates to the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Asia-Pacific conference on response to climate change have stressed the need to raise lawmakers' awareness of linkages among climate change, gender inequality and health care, thereby building laws to promote appropriate solutions to climate change response, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
The Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Asia-Pacific conference discussing response to climate change and actions of lawmakers to realise sustainable development goals is taking place here from Thursday to Saturday. [read more]

HOLZ-SCHMUGGLER ZAHLEN SCHMIERGELD AN VIETNAM
11.05.2017 (Tageblatt) - Umweltschützer werfen der vietnamesischen Regierung und dem Militär des Landes vor, für Schmiergeldzahlungen über den Schmuggel von Holz aus Kambodscha nach Vietnam hinwegzusehen.
So sollten die landeseigenen Wälder geschützt werden, heißt es in einem Bericht der britischen Organisation EIA, der am Montag veröffentlicht wurde. Seit November 2016 seien in diesem Zusammenhang bereits mehr als 13 Millionen Dollar (11,79 Millionen Euro) an Bestechungsgeldern bezahlt worden.
Schätzungsweise seien im selben Zeitraum 300.000 Kubikmeter Rundholz von Kambodscha nach Vietnam geschmuggelt worden, hieß es in dem Bericht. [Weiterlesen]

LOGGING CORRUPTION IN VIETNAM AND CAMBODIA
10.05.2017 By Michele Penna (Asia Sentinel) - In a new report that promises to make waves all the way to Europe, the watchdog Environmental Investigation Agency takes aim at Vietnam’s timber processing industry and the role it plays in the illicit timber trade from Cambodia. The study comes just days before Vietnam and the European Union are meant to finalize their discussions for a Voluntary Protection Agreement (VPA), a deal critics say would spell doom for Cambodia’s environment.
That Cambodian timber ends up in Vietnam’s factories is one of Pnom Penh’s worst kept secrets. Activists and journalists – not to mention the authorities – have always known that business interests hailing from Vietnam scoop up valuable timber across the border, pay a pittance to locals and resell it overseas. [read more]

DAS IST DER TRAURIGSTE BÄR AUF UNSERER SCHÖNEN WELT!
10.05.2017 (Heute) - Vier Pfoten enthüllt schockierende Bilder aus vietnamesischen Gallebären-Farmen. Dort werden die Tiere täglich "abgezapft".
Die vietnamesische Regierung hat zwar bereits im Jahr 2005 Maßnahmen gegen diese grausame Praxis ergriffen, indem sie den Verkauf und Konsum von Bärengalle verboten hat, doch es leiden immer noch etwa 1.300 Bären unter schlimmsten Bedingungen auf rund 400 vietnamesischen Bärenfarmen.
Die meisten Tiere fristen ihr Leben halb verhungert und dehydriert in engen Metallkäfigen. [Weiterlesen]

ASEAN WATER PARTNERSHIP - THE GREAT MEKONG RIVER
06.05.2017 By Ambassador Amado Tolentino (The Manila Times) - THE Mekong River is the twelfth longest river in the world at 4,173 kilometers. The headwaters originate in the Tibetan region of China and the river then flows through Yunan province in China into five Asean countries: Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam.
It was the United Nations which drew attention to the potential for integrated development in the lower Mekong basin as early as the 1950s. A Mekong Committee was set up by Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and the then Republic of South Vietnam in 1957 “to promote, coordinate, supervise and control the planning and investigations of water resource development projects.”
What approach should be taken if and when the water flow from the Mekong River’s source markedly lessened or diminished because of the gigantic dam projects of China to divert the flow for its own use to open up agricultural areas to attain food security for its overgrown population? [read more]

RISING SEA LEVEL A THREAT TO VIETNAMESE FARMERS
05.05.2017 (Al Jazeera) - As sea levels rise, so the salt water is spreading further inland leading to saline intrusion and coastal erosion in Vietnam.
The Mekong River Delta is amongst the most vulnerable regions in South Vietnam. It is home to more than 17 million people and produces around half of the country's rice harvest.
The Vietnamese government has stated that 40 percent of the delta could be submerged if sea levels rise by one meter in decades to come, as levels are currently rising at the rate of 3mm per year. [read more]

PARTNERSHIP FOR GREEN GLOBAL GOALS DISCUSSED IN HANOI
05.05.2017 (Bernama) - HANOI -- A workshop was held here on Thursday by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and the Danish Embassy as part of efforts to shape the new initiative "Partnering for the Green Global Goals 2030", Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
The event gathered policy makers, scientists, businesses and representatives of the public and private sectors in Vietnam and other countries. Danish Minister for Development Cooperation Ulla Tornaes also attended. [read more]

FORMOSA TO INVEST US$1BN IN VIETNAMESE SUBSIDIARY
05.05.2017 By Kuo Chia-erh (Taipei Times) - Major members of the Formosa Plastics Group (台塑集團), the nation’s largest industrial conglomerate, yesterday said they are planning to invest US$1 billion in its subsidiary in Vietnam.
The fund is to accelerate construction of a US$10.5 billion steel plant owned by the subsidiary, Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp (台塑河靜鋼鐵興業).
The group’s plan was made nearly a year after Formosa Ha Tinh Steel was found to have polluted more than 200km of coastline in four Vietnamese provinces in April last year, which sparked public outrage across the nation. [read more]

LACK OF WATER THREATENS LOCALITIES IN VIETNAM
28.04.2017 (UkrAgroConsult) - More than 60 percent of water to Vietnam comes from other countries. Scientists have warned that 45 percent of land area in the southern region will suffer serious saline intrusion in the future.
Nguyen Mai, chair of VAFIEs at the workshop on water resource security, on April 19 in Hanoi, warned that Vietnam is facing big challenges in the context of climate change.
Approximately 63 percent of total flows into Vietnam originate from China, Thailand, Myanmar, Laos, and Cambodia. Of the 208 rivers in Vietnam, 126 are sourced from other countries. Ninety percent of the Mekong River flow and more than 50 percent of the Red River are from overseas. [read more]

VIETNAM WILL 20.000 FAMILIEN IM MEKONG-DELTA UMSIEDELN
26.04.2017 (derStandard) - Hanoi – Aus Sorge vor weiteren Erdrutschen will Vietnam im Delta des Mekong nach Berichten der staatlichen Presse 20.000 Familien umsiedeln. Demnach besteht in der südvietnamesischen Provinz An Giang auf einer Strecke von 30 Kilometern akute Gefahr, dass Häuser in den Fluss abrutschen. Die Tageszeitung "Thanh Nien" berichtete am Mittwoch, dass insgesamt etwa 100 Immobilien gefährdet sind. Am vergangenen Wochenende wurden bereits 16 Häuser von Erd- und Wassermassen getroffen. -
Der stellvertretende Leiter des Instituts für Klimaforschung an der Universität Can Tho, Le Anh Tuan, sagte der Zeitung "VN Express" (Mittwoch): "Im gesamten Mekong-Delta besteht die Gefahr von Erdrutschen und Erosion."
Die Erosion wird nach Tuans Angaben durch Dämme und Stauseen am Oberlauf des Flusses sowie den Abbau von Sand verschärft.  [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAMESE HOUSES SLIDE INTO RIVER AFTER GROUND COLLAPSES
26.04.2017 (9news) - The problems of erosion and unauthorised building in Vietnam was brought home in dramatic fashion when 14 houses slid into a river on Saturday.
An official from the local water drainage department in the south-western province of An Giang captured the dramatic scenes on video, reports Dantri/DTNews.
Footage shows a large villa built by only two years ago collapsing in seconds before sinking beneath the Mekong Delta.
"The slide occurred very fast and houses collapsed and fell into the river in just a couple of minutes," the official said. [read more]

DAS UNFASSBARE LEID DER "GALLENBÄREN" VIETNAMS
24.04.2017 (Krone) - Etwa 1400 Schwarz- und Malaienbären vegetieren in Vietnam unter grausamsten Haltungsbedingungen vor sich hin. Meist als Jungtiere in der Wildnis eingefangen, fristen sie in winzigen Käfigen, ohne ausreichend Nahrung und Wasser ein trauriges Dasein zu nur einem Zweck: Täglich wird ihnen Gallensaft abgezapft, um diesen für die traditionelle chinesische Medizin zu verarbeiten.
Dabei sind die grausame Herstellung von Bärengalle und das Halten von Bären auf Farmen zum Zweck der Galleproduktion in Vietnam bereits seit 1992 illegal. Die private Haltung von Bären ist also immer noch erlaubt [Weiterlesen]

THE TREES KEEPING VIETNAM AFLOAT
18.04.2017 By Erin Craig (BBC) - Rising sea levels threaten to drown the Mekong Delta, which produces the majority of Vietnam’s rice. The only thing standing between the country and the ocean is a tree.
Vietnam is in danger. Rising sea levels pose a huge threat to this coastal country. In less than 100 years much of southern Vietnam’s Mekong Delta – the heart of the nation’s rice production – could go the way of Atlantis. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment  predicts that the ocean will swallow more than a third of the region by the year 2100, taking a swath of Ho Chi Minh City with it. Halfway up the coast from the Mekong Delta, Hoi An’s prognosis is better, but it’s not immune. The city sits where the Thu Bon River meets the South China Sea. Its inhabitants are already used to hauling furniture upstairs during seasonal floods. [read more]

ANGER OVER VIETNAM'S POISONED COAST
18.04.2017 (Yahoo New Zealand) - "The big fish are all dead," complained 50 year-old Mai Xuan Hoa, picking small fish from a net as he tried to rebuild his livelihood a year after Vietnam's worst environmental disaster.
"Where we caught 10 fish in the past, now we will only catch one or two," Hoa said.
Locals say thousands of fishermen have simply given up and gone to look for work elsewhere. Tourists are wary of beaches that have lost their pristine reputation and businesses are struggling. [read more]

VIETNAMESE LEADER HALTS WORK ON STEEL PLANT OVER THREAT OF CHEMICAL SPILL
16.04.2017 (The New York Times) - Vietnam’s prime minister halted work on a $10.6 billion steel plant on Sunday over environmental concerns, aiming to prevent a chemical spill like the one last year at another steel plant, the local news media reported, citing a government statement.
The steel maker Hoa Sen Group, the plant’s investor, was not immediately available for comment. The company announced plans last year for the project, a complex of more than 4,200 acres that could produce millions of tons of steel a year.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, saying he did not want another “Formosa incident,” asked related parties to clarify market demand and environmental impact, the website of the state-run Vietnam Television said. [read more]

VIETNAM SEEKS TO CALM WATERS ONE YEAR AFTER ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER
11.04.2017 by Gary Sands (Foreign Policy Blogs) - ... The deaths of some 100 metric tons of fish in four central provinces were first recorded on April 6, 2016, and protesters soon gathered to accuse a steel mill in Ha Tinh. The steel mill, being developed by Taiwan’s Formosa Plastics Group, was widely suspected of discharging untreated waste into nearby waters.
The accusations led to organized protests breaking out in several major cities, and resulted in the arrests and detainment of dozens of Vietnamese protesters.
To date, there is some confusion over exactly how much compensation has been paid out. Minister Dung, at last week’s press conference, announced local authorities disbursed 76.8% of the total as of March 6. Afterwards, one newspaper reported just 32%, or VND3.7 trillion ($162 million) of VNĐ11.5 trillion ($500 million) had been paid to support local fishermen and help clean up the polluted marine environment as of April 1. [read more]

SAND EXPORTED UNETHICALLY FROM VIETNAM ENDS UP IN SINGAPORE
10.04.2017 Zhangxin Zheng (Mothership) - Earlier this year, two journalists from Vietnamese online news site Tuoi Tre News went into a vigorous investigation on the sand trade between Vietnam and Singapore which was reported in a 3-part series of articles.
They discovered that a large amount of sand was unethically exported by Vietnamese companies to Singapore, despite a suspension on dredging in Vietnam since 2009.
The journalists discovered that a large amount of sand — approximately 900 000 cubic metres of sand — was transported from Vietnam to Singapore from Jan 1 to Feb 23 this year.
Despite imposing a ban on sand export in 2009, Vietnam gave an exception to allow companies to be involved in river or sea dredging projects to sell dredged sand to recoup their expenses. [read more]

VIETNAM GOVT TO PROSECUTE FORMOSA PROTESTERS, TOUGHENING STANCE
10.04.2017 (Reuters) - Vietnam's government said on Monday it would prosecute protesters who last week blocked the country's main highway, taking a tougher stance against a string of protests over the country's worst environmental disaster.
About 100 people blocked Highway 1A a week ago with fishing nets, bricks and stones, holding up thousands of vehicles, the government said in a statement. It said those identified would be prosecuted for "causing public disorder".
The protest at the town of Ky Anh was against the steel mill being built by Taiwan's Formosa Plastics Corp's Vietnam unit. The $11 billion Ha Tinh plant last year accidentally spilled toxic waste that polluted more than 200 km (125 miles) of coast, sparking a wave of protests not seen during four decades of Communist Party rule. [read more]

FORMOSA FACTORY RESTART FAVORS FOREIGN OVER LOCAL INTERESTS
10.04.2017 By David Hutt (Asia Times) - Vietnam is poised to permit the Taiwan-owned Formosa Plastics Corp. steel plant to restart trial operations a year after the facility dumped toxic waste into the sea that polluted more than 200 kilometers of Vietnamese coastline spanning four provinces.
The toxic spill, widely considered the country’s worst ever environmental disaster, resulted in massive fish deaths and adversely impacted at least 250,000 workers and others who rely on fisheries for their livelihoods, according to official estimates. Independent analysts put the environmental and human costs even higher.
Last April’s spill sparked rare large-scale demonstrations, including emotive calls for government accountability and punitive measures against Formosa, that some analysts estimated as Vietnam’s largest civil disobedience movement in over four decades of Communist Party rule. [read more]

FORMOSA PLASTICS CLEARS VIETNAM INSPECTION
06.04.2017 Writer: Kuan-lin Liu (Eleven) - TAIPEI (The China Post/ANN) - Several protests were held after April 2016 both in Vietnam and Taiwan over Formosa Plastics' polluting of local water sources in central Vietnam.
Nearly a year after Formosa Plastics Group was found severely polluting the waters along a 200-kilometer coastal stretch in central Vietnam, the Vietnamese government is reportedly considering letting the Taiwanese plastics company resume operations in the country.
According to the latest statement from the ministry, Formosa Plastics Group has complied with the Vietnam government's demands and the central coastline's ecosystem has returned to its former state. [read more]

VIETNAMESE PROTEST ONE YEAR AFTER FORMOSA SPILL DISASTER
06.04.2017 (Reuters) - Protests were held at several places along Vietnam's coast on Thursday, a year after the country's worst environmental disaster was caused by a spill from a steel mill, activists said.
Sea life began washing up on April 6, 2016 near a steel plant being developed by Taiwan's Formosa Plastics Corp. Within weeks, more than 200 km (125 miles) of coast had been contaminated.
After months of rallies and an outpouring of anger not seen in four decades of Communist Party rule, Formosa agreed to pay $500 million in compensation. [read more]

VIETNAMESE CATHOLICS DEMONSTRATE TO MARK ANNIVERSARY OF FORMOSA CHEMICAL SPILL
06.04.2017 (RFA) - Hundreds of Vietnamese Catholics from various parishes of central Vietnam’s Vinh diocese demonstrated on Thursday to mark the one-year anniversary of a toxic waste spill that polluted more than 125 miles of coastline in four coastal provinces.
The spill—the country’s largest environmental disaster—began on April 6, 2016 and lasted for 12 days, killing an estimated 115 tons of fish and leaving fishermen and tourism industry workers jobless.
Two months later, Taiwan-owned Formosa Plastics Group acknowledged it was responsible for the release of the chemicals from its massive steel plant located at the deep-water port in Ha Tinh province’s Ky Anh district. [read more]

FORMOSA VIETNAM STEEL MILL MEETS CONDITIONS FOR TEST RUNS A YEAR AFTER SPILL
05.04.2017 By My Pham (Reuters) - HANOI- Formosa Plastics Corp's steel mill in Vietnam has met environment ministry conditions to start test runs, state television said on Wednesday, a year after a toxic spill from the plant caused the country's worst environmental disaster.
A year ago, the $11 billion Ha Tinh Steel plant accidentally spilled toxic waste that polluted more than 200 km (125 miles) of coastline, devastating sea life and local economies dependent on fishing and tourism. [read more]

ANGER BURNS ON VIETNAM'S POISONED COAST A YEAR AFTER SPILL
04.04.2017 (Reuters) - "The big fish are all dead," complained 50 year-old Mai Xuan Hoa, picking small fish from a net as he tried to rebuild his livelihood a year after Vietnam's worst environmental disaster.
Sea life began washing up on April 6, 2016 near a steel plant being developed by Taiwan's Formosa Plastics Corp. Within weeks, more than 200 km (125 miles) of coast had been sullied by the accidental release of chemicals including cyanide, phenols and iron hydroxide.
Along the coast, the recovery is slow and anger endures.
"Where we caught 10 fish in the past, now we will only catch one or two," Hoa said. [read more]

VIETNAM PRIEST DISMISSES CLAIMS FORMOSA ACTIVISTS SPARKED VIOLENCE
20.03.2017 (RFA) - A Catholic priest in Vietnam on Monday dismissed official claims that activists instigated a violent confrontation with local authorities during a February protest over the government’s handling of a toxic waste spill off the country’s central coast.
Dang Huu Nam of the Phu Yen parish, under central Vietnam’s Roman Catholic Vinh Diocese, told RFA he wrote a letter rejecting accusations by officials in Nghe An province that activists protesting Hanoi’s settlement with the Formosa steel plant over its toxic waste spill had touched off the clash. [read more]

TAIWAN'S FORMOSA PLASTICS TO BOOST VIETNAM STEEL PLANT INVESTMENT BY $346 MLN
17.03.2017 (Nasdaq) - TAIPEI (Reuters) - Taiwan'sFormosa Plastics Group will boost investment for a $10.7-billion steel project in Vietnam, hoping to launch production in the fourth quarter, after delays over the plant's role in an environmental disaster, an executive said on Friday.
Formosa Ha Tinh Steel will step up capital by $346 million to invest in enhanced environmental safety measures, raise working capital and buy material, Chang Fu-ning, an executive vice president of the conglomerate, told Reuters. [read more]

VIETNAMESE WORKERS PROTEST IN TAIPEI AGAINST FORMOSA MILL POLLUTION
15.03.2017 (Focus Taiwan) - Taipei, March 15 (CNA) Vietnamese migrant workers and human rights activists staged a protest in Taipei on Wednesday to demand that the Vietnamese government compensate the victims of an environmental disaster in Vietnam last year that was caused by a Taiwanese-owned steel factory.
The protesters rallied in front of the Vietnam Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei, holding placards that read "Formosa get out of Vietnam."
The steel factory was found to be responsible for a chemical spill that killed fish and destroyed marine life along a 200-kilometer stretch of coastline in central Vietnam in April last year. [read more]

BIS ZU 2000 EURO PRO KILOGRAMM - WILDERER "ERNTEN" DIE LETZTEN SEEGURKEN
11.03.2017 (n-tv) - Je rarer etwas wird, umso teurer kann es verkauft werden. Das gilt auch für Seegurken. Wilderer aus Vietnam fahren zu einer Inselgruppe im Südpazifik und plündern dort die letzten Vorkommen. Die einheimischen Fischer sind erbost.
"Seit etwa neun Monaten beobachten wir das", sagt Jean-Louis Fournier, zuständig für die Überwachung der neukaledonischen Gewässer. "70 Schiffe haben wir entdeckt, 55 mit einem Bußgeld verwarnt und fünf zum Anlegen gezwungen." Mehrere Tonnen illegal gefischter Seegurken wurden beschlagnahmt und fünf vietnamesische Kapitäne sitzen inzwischen im Gefängnis. [Weiterlesen]

CATHOLIC ANTI-POLLUTION PROTESTS ONGOING IN VIETNAM
08.03.2017 (UCAnews) - Catholics in north-central Vietnam are continuing their protests against a Taiwanese industrial plant responsible for one of the country's biggest environmental disasters.
Thousands of Catholics attended a special Mass in Song Ngoc Church in Nghe An province on March 5 where they prayed for the victims of the 2016 disaster and for justice against Formosa Plastics, the Taiwanese company that admitted responsibility for poisoning coastal waters and killing fish stocks. Father John Baptist Nguyen Dinh Thuc celebrated the Mass that drew a crowd from the neighboring parishes of Manh Son and Phu Yen. [read more]

VIETNAM SAYS MUST BE SURE FORMOSA PLASTICS CAN OPERATE SAFELY
08.03.2017 (Reuters) - Vietnam will only allow Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics' local unit to dispose of waste once it is completely sure it can do so safely, the government said on Wednesday.
Formosa Ha Tinh Steel, which runs an $11 billion steel plant, polluted more than 200 km (125 miles) of coastline in April 2016, killing more than 100 tonnes of fish and devastating the environment, jobs and economies of four provinces.
The plant is current suspended from operating while the company seeks to address more than 50 violations identified by the government. [read more]

POLLUTION MARITIME : DES CATHOLIQUES MANIFESTENT EN MÊME TEMPS DANS LES PROVINCES DU CENTRE ET À SAIGON
07.03.2017 (Églises d'Asie) - Pour la première fois depuis le début des réactions populaires déclenchées par la pollution environnementale qu’a provoquée le complexe sidérurgique de Formosa, la manifestation qui a eu lieu dans la matinée du dimanche 5 mars se voulait d’une envergure nationale, même si le nombre de participants dans le Sud a été peu nombreux. Ce sont certes les provinces du Centre-Vietnam, les plus touchées par la pollution, qui ont fourni le plus de protestataires, mais plusieurs centaines de manifestants ont aussi marché dans les rues de Saigon et dans quelques autres villes du Sud. [en savoir plus]

NUCLEAR POWER IN VIETNAM: CHALLENGES AND ALTERNATIVES
06.03.2017 by Klaus-Peter Dehde, Germany; Kanna Mitsuta, Friends of the Earth, Japan; Dr. David Fig, Biowatch, South Africa; Nguy Thi Khanh, Green Innovation and Development Centre; and Dr. Sonja Schirmbeck, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung (EE Publishers) - As nuclear power is one of the most dangerous technologies ever invented, the strictest possible safety laws have to be adopted, and regularly updated, in order to prevent accidents. Beside the two “meltdowns” in Chernobyl and Fukushima, more than 30 accidents have been categorised according to the International Nuclear Event Scale (INES), and countless smaller accidents have not been recorded internationally.
Laws and regulations regulating security concerns have to be adopted before the concrete planning phase of nuclear power plants begins. They need to cover the whole nuclear life-cycle, including a comprehensive plan for nuclear waste storage. Special attention needs to be paid to policy coherency, i.e. consistency with other relevant laws. [read more]

"LEBEN mit der KATASTROPHE"

Fukushima 6 Jahre danach
3 Rosen e.V. & Sayonara Genpatsu Düsseldorf mit MAKO OSHIDORI

AKW FUKUSHIMA DAI ICHI – „EVERY THINK IS UNDER CONTROL“ – WIRKLICH?
20.02.2017 (Sayonara Genpatsu Düsseldorf) - Immer wieder kommt es zu neuen Schwierigkeiten am havarierten AKW Fukushima dai ichi. Nicht nur die etwa 1000 großen Tanks mit dem hochradioaktiven Wasser (ca. 960 000 m³, Stand: 02/2017), das kontaminierte Grundwasser und die sogenannte „Eismauer“, die nicht hält, was sie verspricht, sondern auch der Rückbau der Reaktoren bereitet extreme Schwierigkeiten.
Während das volle Abklingbecken von Reaktor 4 unter großem Aufwand Stück für Stück 2014 erfolgreich entleert werden konnte, wüten in den Reaktoren 1 bis 3 immer noch die drei Kernschmelzen, dessen Ausmaß man bis heute noch nicht kennt. Um für die Bergung wichtige Daten zu gewinnen, sollte nun der Reaktor 2 mittels Erkundungsroboter untersucht werden. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM POLICE STOP FISHERMEN MARCHING TO MAKE CLAIMS AT STEEL FIRM
14.02.2017 (Reuters) - Police in Vietnam stopped hundreds of protesters on Tuesday from marching to present compensation claims against a steel plant over a toxic spill last year, activists said.
Tens of millions of fish were killed in one of Vietnam's biggest environmental disasters, which was caused by a unit of Taiwan conglomerate Formosa Plastics.
Activists said police stopped the protesters' vehicles, and later stopped them, after they had walked 20 km (12 miles) towards their destination. [read more]

VIETNAMESE AUTHORITIES SEND ‘THUGS’ TO BEAT ACTIVISTS
14.02.2017 (RFA) - Vietnamese authorities appear to be systematically cracking down on activists, as environmentalists and others have been attacked by security forces and thugs associated with local police over the past week, RFA’s Vietnamese Service has learned.
The attacks do not seem to be linked to any one group as they have targeted environmentalists and religious activists.
On Tuesday, police reportedly arrested and beat several demonstrators as about 500 people were marching to protest Hanoi’s handling of the Formosa steel plant toxic waste spill that poisoned much of the central coast last year. [read more]

APOKALYPSE IN DER REISSCHÜSSEL
10.02.2017 Von Urs Wälterlin Phnom Penh (Tagesanzeiger) - Klimawandel und die Jagd nach billiger Energie bedrohen Reisfelder und Fischbestände im Mekongdelta. Die Folgen für die Nahrungssicherheit von Millionen Menschen sind dramatisch.
Domaden hat Sorgen. Auf seinem Reisfeld wachsen keine satten, grünen Pflanzen heran, sondern stecken vertrocknete Halme in staubigem Boden. Er sagt: «Der Regen ist unzuverlässig geworden, die Winde stark, die Temperaturen immer höher.» Das ist eine tödliche Kombination für eine Pflanze, die darauf angewiesen ist, im Wasser heranzuwachsen.
Noch haben die meisten seiner Pflanzen Wasser. Aber die trockenen Flächen werden grösser. «Ich bin Reisfarmer seit meiner Geburt», sagt der schmächtige Kambodschaner, aber das habe er noch nie erlebt. «Wir können den Klimawandel sehen, mit unseren eigenen Augen.» Der 58-Jährige hat Angst, Angst um seine Zukunft, Angst für seine Familie. [Weiterlesen]

FLAMANVILLE: UNFALL IM FIASKO-AKW
09.02.2017 Thomas Pany (Telepolis) - Laut Behörden gibt es keinen Anlass zur Sorge, weil "kein nukleares Risiko" bestehe
Die Eilmeldung zu einer Explosion im AKW Flamanville heute Morgen zog im Schweif sogleich die Beschwichtigung mit: Es handle sich zwar um ein "signikatives Geschehen" in der Technik, aber nicht um einen nuklearen Unfall, es bestehe kein "nukleares Risiko", zitierte die Onlineausgabe von Ouest-France die Botschaft der zuständigen Präfektur.
Ein harmloses Ereignis? Fünf Personen wurden leicht vergiftet, aber nicht verletzt, betont der Direktor des Kabinetts der Präfektur. [Weiterlesen]

FLAMANVILLE - EXPLOSION IN FRANZÖSISCHEM KERNKRAFTWERK
09.02.2017 (FAZ) - In einem Kernkraftwerk in Nordfrankreich hat es offenbar eine Explosion gegeben. Ein Verstrahlungsrisiko besteht aber wohl nicht.
Der staatliche Energiebetreiber EdF meldete, dass sich die Explosion um 9.40 Uhr im Maschinenraum des Kraftwerksblockes 1 ereignete. Das entstandene Feuer sei schnell gelöscht worden. Es habe keine „Opfer“ gegeben. [Weiterlesen]

IS VIETNAM IN FOR ANOTHER DEVASTATING DROUGHT?
08.02.2017 By Nguyen Minh Quang (The Diplomat) - Lessons learned from last year’s disaster can shape a climate-resilient approach in the Mekong Delta.
The Tet Holiday (Vietnamese lunar New Year) has come to an end, marking the commencement of a new dry season in Vietnam’s lower Mekong Delta. Right now in coastal provinces around the Delta, thousands of farmers, especially those who miserably suffered during last year’s historic drought, are mobilizing to prepare for another similarly devastating drought, which is expected to arrive in the Delta in a few weeks.
During last year’s dry season, the record drought, followed by saltwater intrusion, cost Vietnam VND 15 trillion ($669 million) due to the heavy toll on agricultural production. It also caused dire humanitarian and other economic impacts: almost half a million households lacked fresh drinking water and experienced food shortages and thousands of affected people had to migrate to urban areas in search of jobs. The drought was mainly caused by Mekong upstream dams built by China in connection with El Nino effects. [read more]

NEW BOOK ON CLIMATE CHANGE
05.02.2017 Leander c. Domingo (The Manila Times) - Southeast Asian scientists and researchers have written the book “Learning and Coping with Change: Case Stories of Climate Change Adaptation in Southeast Asia.” Now off the press, it was published by the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA).
the book is a pioneering work of the 1st Regional Knowledge Sharing Writeshop on CCA in Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development participated in by scientists and researchers from Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam as well as international agencies working on agriculture and climate change [read more]

TOSHIBAS KERNSCHMELZE
19.01.2017 Von Felix Lill (Die Zeit) - Die japanische Atomenergie ist am Ende. Darunter leidet vor allem der Marktführer, den wir hierzulande nur wegen seiner Fernseher und Laptops kennen.
Es brauchte nur ein paar Tage, um die Zukunft eines Unternehmens infrage zu stellen, das sich seit 140 Jahren am Markt behauptet hat. Ende Dezember brach der Börsenkurs des japanischen Konzerns Toshiba um 40 Prozent ein. Am Hauptsitz an der Bucht von Tokio registrierten die Manager die wohl schwärzeste Woche der Firmengeschichte. [Weiterlesen]

SELON LE MINISTÈRE DE L’ENVIRONNEMENT, LA CATASTROPHE ÉCOLOGIQUE DU CENTRE-VIETNAM N’EST PAS UN DES DIX ÉVÉNEMENTS MARQUANTS DE L’ANNÉE 2016
12.01.2017 (Églises d'Asie) - En ce début d’année, les divers ministères récapitulent les quelques faits saillants de l’année écoulée et publient la liste des événements ayant marqué les esprits. On attendait avec curiosité de savoir comment le ministère des Ressources naturelles et de l’Environnement présenterait la catastrophe écologique du mois d’avril 2016 provoquée au Centre-Vietnam par des substances toxiques rejetées en pleine mer de Chine par l’usine taïwanaise Formosa, située dans la province du Ha Tinh. Or, dans la liste des dix événements les plus marquants concernant les ressources naturelles et l’environnement, aucune allusion n’est faite à la pollution maritime des côtes du Centre-Vietnam.
L’empoisonnement des eaux de la mer de Chine par des substances toxiques a débuté au début du mois d’avril 2016 et s’est prolongée tout au long du mois suivant. Les conséquences sont loin d’avoir cessé. Des milliers de tonnes de poissons morts sont venus s’échouer sur les plages des provinces du Ha Tinh, du Quang Binh, du Quang Tri et du Thua Thien. L’événement a suscité dans la population un bouleversement et une émotion considérable.  [en savoir plus]

VIETNAM'S NEXT ENVIRONMENTAL HOTSPOT
10.01.2017 By Nguyen Minh Quang (The Diplomat) - Less than a year after a major pollution crisis, trouble is brewing in the Mekong Delta.
In recent weeks, the public’s deep concerns about the Mekong Delta’s environmental pollution, generated by industrial campuses and export-processing zones surrounding its major rivers, seem to have been overshadowed by the outbreak of a new high-profile case related to state agencies responsible for foreign investment promotion and management. In early December 2016, a debate heated up in Vietnam news media over alleged irregularities concerning the recruitment and placement of a 26-year-old graduate with no work experience, Vu Minh Hoang, into the powerful position of deputy director of Can Tho City’s Investment Promotion Center.
Water, air, and land pollution have become more serious over the years in Vietnam, particularly at industrial complexes that are often equipped with low-quality technologies imported from China. [read more]

FISH KILL DISASTER IN VIETNAM FAILS TO MAKE OFFICIAL TOP 10 ENVIRONMENTAL EVENTS
06.01.2017 (RFA) - A steel plant disaster that killed more than 100 tons of fish and rained economic devastation on Vietnam’s central coast was conspicuously absent from a list of 2016’s top environmental events last year released on Friday by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.
While the government listed its Aug. 31 teleconference on environmental protection and the discovery of copper and uranium ore in the central highlands among the official Top 10.
Vu Minh Son, head of the agency in charge of issuing awards under the environment ministry, said the Formosa disaster didn’t make the list because it was a disaster and because only "positive" news made the list. [read more]

MAN-MADE MARINE DISASTER IN VIETNAM - CAN THE WORLD COMMUNITY DO MORE THAN LOOK?
01.01.2017 Thục-Quyên (Save Vietnam's Nature) - In early April 2016, tones of dead fish began washing up along the coast of Ha Tinh province and neighboring Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue provinces: miles and miles of fishes, countless clams, some occasional whales, seabirds, etc. followed by the death of diver Le Van Ngay after suffering chest pains and breathing difficulties [i], unusual health conditions of his colleagues (tired, chest pain and dizzy after every swim, skin tone changed), illness of hundreds of people from eating seafood, etc. A month later, over 100 tones of dead fishes had been collected.
For nearly a whole month, the Vietnamese government hasn´t showed sign to start any investigation, but instead, on April 23, Deputy chairman of the People´s Committee of Ha Tinh Province Dang Ngoc Son made an irresponsible statement, “We can eat seafood such as squid, shrimp, crab which are still alive, and we can also be reassured to swim in these waters” [v] and deputy environment minister Vo Tuan Nhan said “there is no proof yet to conclude a link between Formosa and the facility to the mass fish deaths.” [read more]

GROUPS WANT SOLUTIONS FOR POLLUTION IN VIETNAM
01.01.2017 (The Star Online) - Taiwan: Eight months after a steel plant in Vietnam owned by Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics caused one of the worst environmental disasters in the country’s history, Taiwanese civic groups have demanded answers from the enterprise and government.
At a public hearing at the Legislative Yuan on Friday, representatives from environmental and human rights groups weighed in on the causes and outcomes of the April disaster, and discussed whether government negligence and legislative loopholes had contributed to the calamity. The hearing was held by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators Chen Man Li and Wu Kuen Yuh. [read more]

ANSWERS SOUGHT AFTER STEEL PLANT DISASTER
31.12.2016 By Sun Hsin Hsuan (The China Post) - TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Eight months after a steel plant in Vietnam owned by Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics (台塑集團) caused one of the worst environmental disasters in the country's history, Taiwanese civic groups demanded answers from the company and the government.TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Eight months after a steel plant in Vietnam owned by Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics (台塑集團) caused one of the worst environmental disasters in the country's history, Taiwanese civic groups demanded answers from the company and the government.
At a public hearing at the Legislative Yuan on Friday, representatives from environmental and human rights groups weighed in on the causes and outcomes of the April disaster, and discussed whether government negligence and legislative loopholes had contributed to the calamity. [read more]

VIETNAMESE FACTORY CAUGHT DUMPING INDUSTRIAL WASTE
27.12.2016 By Bennett Murray (Anadolu Agency) - Discovery comes at the end of a year that saw industrial pollution take prominence in Vietnamese politics.
Vietnamese police have caught a ceramic tile factory dumping industrial waste into a local river, local media reported Tuesday.
The factory, owned by Pak Vietnam Single-Member LLC in southern Vietnam’s Dong Nai province, was found to be pumping “black, putrid sewage” from a coolant bath for a coal gasification boiler, the Tuoi Tre newspaper reported.
Industrial waste dumping has been a particularly sensitive issue in the country this year in the wake of a mass fish kill off the central Vietnamese coast in April. [read more]

FISCH ODER STAHL? DIE NEUE UMWELTBEWEGUNG VIETNAMS
26.12.2016 von Thuc Quyen Nguyen (SOA) - Anfang April dieses Jahres wurde an den Küsten der Provinzen Ha Tinh, Qang Binh, Quang Tri und Thua Thien Hue tonnenweise toter Fisch angespült. Kilometerlange Fischberge, unzählige Muscheln, verendete Seevögel und sogar einige Wale  – gefolgt vom Tod des Tauchers Le Van Ngay, der nach einem Tauchgang in diesem Gebiet zunächst über Brustschmerzen und Atemnot geklagt hatte. Auch seine Tauchkollegen bemerkten gesundheitliche Beeinträchtigungen wie Schwindel, Hautläsionen und Kreislaufprobleme. Hunderte Menschen wurden durch den Verzehr von Fisch und Meereserzeugnissen krank. Und kaum einen Monat später waren schon über einhundert Tonnen toten Fisches zusammen gekommen. Es sollte sich als die Spitze eines Eisberges von Umweltverschmutzung und dauerhafter Umweltzerstörung herausstellen
Bald nach Beginn des ominösen Massensterbens maritimen Lebens in den zentralvietnamesischen
Küstenprovinzen wurden erste Vermutungen über die Ursachen der Umweltkatastrophe laut, und Formosa Ha Tinh Steel (FHS oder Formosa HS), ein Subunternehmen des weltweit agierenden, taiwanesischen Formosa Plastics Group-Konglomerates, schnell als Urheber identifiziert ...[Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM SAYS RECOVERY FROM FORMOSA INDUSTRIAL DISASTER COULD TAKE A DECADE
23.12.2016 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - HANOI, Dec 23 (Reuters) - Vietnam's central region is expected to take a decade to completely recover from an industrial accident caused by a unit of a Taiwan conglomerate, which led to Vietnam's worst ever environmental disaster, the government said.
"Formosa had deliberately changed many of the contents of the two environmental impacts assessment reports approved in 2008 including using 'wet' coking system instead of 'dry'," the ministry said a detailed response. "These changes are illegal."
Responding this week to questions as part of a Reuters investigation in November, Vietnam's environment ministry said the firm had rectified 50 of 53 violations and was on its way to removing the biggest cause of the disaster, a highly toxic "wet" coking system that Formosa had used in a deliberate violation of its agreement. [read more]

STAUDÄMME GEFÄHRDEN DIE ERNÄHRUNG VON MILLIONEN MENSCHEN
08.12.2016 Von Richard Stone (SZ) - Immer im April schwammen die Nyawn-Welse den Mekong aufwärts zu ihren Laichplätzen. Unterwegs mussten sie sich im Süden von Laos durch eine Engstelle drängen. Dort warteten die Fischer. Jedes Jahr fingen sie Hunderttausende der daumengroßen Tiere in ihren Netzen. Dann begann im Jahr 2014 die Arbeit an einem großen Staudamm. "Obwohl es noch mehrere Jahre dauern wird, bis der Don-Sahong-Damm fertig ist, hat er bereits den Weg der Fische abgeschnitten und die kommunale Fischerei zerstört", sagt Zeb Hogan, ein Fischereibiologe der Universität von Nevada, Reno. "Diesen Fischfang gibt es nicht mehr."
Es ist nur ein kleines Beispiel in einer Nahrungsmittelkrise, die derzeit das gesamte Mekongdelta bedroht. Gleichzeitig bauen Laos und andere Länder, die nach elektrischer Energie hungern, immer mehr Staudämme im Mekong. Der Fluss schlängelt sich durch Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Kambodscha und Vietnam.
Weil die Dämme die Wanderrouten der Fische blockieren und das Mekongdelta von der Zufuhr von Sedimenten abschneiden, könnten die Fischer im Mekong-Becken mehr als ein Drittel ihrer Fänge einbüßen - ein schwerer Schlag für die 60 Millionen Menschen der Region [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAMESE PRIEST COMPLAINS ABOUT FPG UNIT
07.12.2016 By Cheng Hung-ta and Jake Chung (The Taipei Times) - A Vietnamese Catholic priest yesterday held a news conference in Taipei to complain about the operations of Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp, a Vietnamese subsidiary of Formosa Plastics Group (FPG).
Father Nguyen Dinh Thuc from the Catholic Diocese of Vinh, who was accompanied at the news conference by Taiwanese lawmakers and representatives of several non-governmental organizations, said pollution from the plant in Ha Tinh Province has severely affected the region’s residents physically and spiritually.
Vietnamese fishermen have been particularly affected as massive numbers of fish were poisoned by chemicals discharged by the steel plant in April, and without fish to sell, they are unable to buy food for their families or provide schooling for their children, Nguyen said. [read more]

 CSC TEAM TO ASSESS FIRST FORMOSA HA TINH BLAST FURNACE IN VIETNAM
06.12.2016 Lorenzo Holt (Metal Bulletin) - Taiwan’s China Steel Corp (CSC) has sent experts to Formosa Ha Tinh Steel in Vietnam this week to assess the condition of the plant’s blast furnace No1 in preparation for its commissioning, officials at CSC have told Metal Bulletin.
A team of 16 experts was sent to the Vietnamese steel plant to help Formosa Ha Tinh officials prepare to begin operations as well as to take inventory of the manpower and equipment at the plant.
The CSC officials were unable to estimate a start-up date for the blast furnace, which was supposed to be commissioned in December 2016, but local news reports said that it should be commissioned in the first quarter of 2017.
The Ha Tinh plant is a $10.50 billion, three-staged, integrated steelworks construction project comprising two blast furnaces and with planned crude steel capacity of 7.50 million tpy in its first stage.
The plant will have a final production capacity of 22.50 million tpy and will be able to manufacture slab, billet, hot rolled coil, wire rod and bars.
Formosa Ha Tinh is 25%-owned by CSC and 70%-owned by Taiwanese industrial conglomerate Formosa Plastics Group, with Japan’s JFE Steel owning the remaining 5%.
 
PLASTIC ISLAND - HOW OUR THROWAWAY CULTURE IS TURNING PARADISE INTO A GRAVEYARD
01.12.2016 By Nick Paton Walsh, Ingrid Formanek, Jackson Loo and Mark Phillips (CNN) - Midway Atoll, North Pacific Ocean (CNN) -- The distance from humanity yawns out in front of you when you stand on the pale sands of this tiny Pacific island.
Standing on the island's remote shoreline brings a calm and humility -- until you look down at your feet.
On the beach lies a motorcycle helmet, a mannequin's head, an umbrella handle, and a flip-flop. They didn't fall from a plane or off a ship, and there aren't any civilians living here who could have left them behind.
China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Sri Lanka are considered the five worst offenders when it comes to plastic pollution, according to a study published in Science, and you can anticipate as much success telling people there to stop using disposable plastics as you would do in the US. [read more]

VIETNAM BATTLES EROSION OF BEACHES – AND OF TOURISM
30.11.2016 Coco Liu (The Christian Science Monitor) - CUA DAI BEACH, VIETNAM — As dusk falls on this landmark Vietnamese beach, Hung Hoa is about to close her seafood restaurant. It is only six o’clock.
“Nobody is coming here anyway,” sighs Mrs. Hung. Her restaurant has 10 dining tables; even though it is supper time, all of them are empty.
Once a popular tourist destination, Cua Dai beach is now a deserted place. Not far from Hung’s restaurant looms an abandoned lifeguard tower. There is no music to be heard and you rarely come across visitors. Instead, you see huge sandbags piled everywhere against the sea.
Vietnam is no stranger to typhoons and flooding. But a changing climate is making things even worse.  A 2010 World Bank report warned that the country is experiencing longer typhoon and flood seasons and that “storms are tracking into new coastal areas.” [read more]

VIETNAM SENDS FOUR WOMEN TO JAIL FOR ROADBLOCK PROTEST
29.11.2016 (RFA) - A local court sentenced four women to six-month jail terms after finding them guilty of disrupting public order for their part in protests last year that blocked a major highway, RFA’s Vietnamese Service has learned.
Hoang Thi Thai, Mai Thi Trinh, Mai Thi Tiem and Le Thi Thuy joined other local people in blocking Highway 1A near the Ky Anh township in Ha Tinh province last year as a protest over local authorities’ detention of two men.
The Dec. 11. 2015 protest closed the road for 20 hours as demonstrators demanded the release of Hoang Van Thiet and Nguyen Huu Phuong.
Der Protest am 11. Dezember 2015 schloß die Straße für 20 Stunden, während Demonstranten die Freigabe von Hoang Van Thiet und Nguyen Huu Phuong forderten.
Nguyen Huu Phuong wurde während der Arbeit an der Formosa Plastics Group Stahlwerk verhaftet, und Hoang Van Thiet wurde vermutlich von der Regierung entführt. Beide Männer sind "Sicherheit Mitglieder" der Dong Yen Gemeinde, nach Zeugen. [read more]

POLLUTION EMERGENCY DESTROYS TOURISM IN CENTRAL VIETNAM
28.11.2016 Tran Vinh (AsiaNews) – Hanoi - The pollution emergency that hit Vietnam’s central provinces has delivered a heavy blow to the local tourism industry.
On top of job losses in the fishing industry, locals complain of the drop in tourists, discouraged by the poor quality of water and fish. Compared to 2015, the provinces of Quảng Bình, Quảng Trị, Thừa Thiên and Hà Tĩnh have lost a million visitors.
Tourism Office statistics show that " marine tourism-related business in Hà Tĩnh dropped by 90 per cent. Sales and services fell by 40-50 per cent." Quảng Bình province lost revenue worth 1,900 billion dong (US$ 85 million), including restaurants, hotels and handicraft products. [read more]

KILLING THE MEKONG, DAM BY DAM
Regional governments have been underestimating the environmental and economic costs of Mekong dams.

28.11.2016 By Tom Fawthrop (The Diplomat) - SIPHANDONE, LAOS — Explorers, travelers, and traders have long been enchanted by the magical vistas and extraordinary biodiversity of the Mekong, especially here.
Swirling rapids roar through the surrounding forest to unleash the magnificent Khone Phapheng Falls in southern Laos. The surrounding myriad islands and forested islets, dotted among the tranquil waterways and braided channels of the Mekong, inspire awe and wonder. This is Siphandone (Four Thousand Islands) district of Southern Laos, nestled alongside the Cambodian border.
However, the serenity of Siphandone has recently been rudely disrupted by the dynamite-blasting of rocks, shattering the tranquil reverie of this ecotourism paradise.
The mighty Mekong, flowing for 4,630 km through the heart of Southeast Asia, is in deep crisis. The delta in Vietnam is both shrinking and sinking. [read more]

LA EMERGENCIA DESATADA POR LA CONTAMINACIÓN DESTRUYE EL TURISMO EN EL CENTRO DE VIETNAM
28.11.2016 Tran Vinh (AsiaNews) – Hanoi - La emergencia desatada por la contaminación, que ha golpeado a las provincias centrales de Vietnam, ha puesto de rodillas a la industria del turismo. Los habitantes locales, que ya venían atravesando gravísimas dificultades a raíz de la pérdida del trabajo vinculado a la pesca, ahora denuncian los daños a largo plazo provocados por la falta de la clientela habitual, que desconfía de la calidad del agua y del pescado.
Con respecto al 2015, las provincias de Quảng Bình, Quảng Trị, Thừa Thiên y Hà Tĩnh han perdido un millón de visitantes. Las estadísticas de la Oficina de Turismo muestran que “las ventas ligadas al turismo marino en Hà Tĩnh han caído un 90%. E incluso las ganancias del mercado y de los servicios económicos se han reducido en un 40-50%. [seguir leyendo]

VIETNAM CANCELS NUCLEAR POWER PLAN OVER COSTS
25.11.2016 By Diarmaid Williams (Power Engineering) - The Vietnamese government has opted not to go ahead with the development of two new nuclear power plants in partnership with Russia and Japan, citing a doubling in costs for its decision.
In a statement, the government said the price for the proposed plants – approved in 2009 – had doubled to nearly $18bn, prohibitive to going ahead, as the government already has debt issues.
According to Reuters, when the government first approved plans for the two plants, growth in Vietnam’s annual power demand was projected at 17-20 percent. However, Duong Quang Thanh, chairman of state utility Vietnam Electricity group, was quoted by state-run Voice of Vietnam radio recently as saying that annual growth between 2016 and 2020 was now forecast at 11 per cent, and 7-8 per cent through 2030. [read more]

VIETNAM SCRAPS HUGE NUCLEAR POWER PLANT PROJECTS
22.11.2016 (Bangkok Post) - HANOI - Power-hungry Vietnam scrapped plans for two multi-billion dollar nuclear power plants on Tuesday, citing environmental and financial reasons after the cost of the projects skyrocketed.
The two plants in central Ninh Thuan province had a combined capacity of 4,000 megawatts and were to be developed with assistance from Russia's Rosatom and the Japanese consortium JINED.
The cost of the nuclear power plants, slated to be the first in Southeast Asia, doubled since they were first tabled in 2009 to an estimated $18 billion, officials said earlier.
"The project was suspended not due to technological reasons, but the country's current economic situation," the government said on its website. [read more]

VIETNAM: ABANDON DU PROJET DE CENTRALES NUCLÉAIRES
22.11.2016 (Le Figaro) - Le Vietnam a abandonné mardi son premier projet de production d'électricité nucléaire après un vote de l'Assemblée nationale contre la construction de deux centrales, des chantiers qui avaient été confiés au russe Rosatom et à un consortium japonais emmené par Japan Atomic Power. [en savoir plus]

VIETNAM ABANDONS PLAN FOR FIRST NUCLEAR POWER PLANTS
22.11.2016 By Mai Nguyen and Ho Binh Minh (Reuters) -  HANOI - Vietnam's National Assembly voted on Tuesday to abandon plans to build two multi-billion-dollar nuclear power plants with Russia and Japan, after officials cited lower demand forecasts, rising costs and safety concerns.
"We respect our customer's position, and we are ready to provide the full support to Vietnam when the country continues the implementation of its national nuclear power program," Russia's Rosatom said in an emailed comment.
Rosatom, however, is not fully pulling out of Vietnam. The state-run company said it would continue taking part in developing nuclear technologies and infrastructure, which should support peaceful nuclear energy in Vietnam, it said without elaborating. [read more]

VIETNAM MEDIA FINED FOR 'FALSE' FISH SAUCE REPORTS
21.11.2016 (Channel NewsAsia) - HANOI - fined scores of news outlets for publishing now-discredited reports about toxic fish sauce, accusing them of sparking public panic over the staple condiment in a country plagued by food scares.
Reports emerged in mid-October that some fish sauce contained dangerously high levels of arsenic, with local media mainly citing a survey by the state-controlled Vietnam Standards and Consumers Association (Vinastas).
The government said Monday the reports failed to distinguish between highly-toxic inorganic arsenic, and organic arsenic which is present mainly in seafood and is less toxic.
The ministry fined 50 news organisations for running the reports, including the mainstream Thanh Nien newspaper which was slapped with a nearly $9,000 penalty. [read more]

VIETNAM: LES MÉDIAS CONDAMNÉS POUR DES ARTICLES SUR DE LA SAUCE
21.11.2016 (Le Figaro) - Le Vietnam a condamné lundi des dizaines d'organes de presse pour la publication d'articles alarmants sur de la sauce de poisson toxique, qui aurait causé une panique dans le pays où il s'agit d'un condiment de base.Mi-octobre, des articles s'appuyant sur une enquête de l'association des consommateurs du Vietnam (Vinastas), contrôlée par l'Etat, avaient expliqué que certaines sauces de poisson commercialisées dans le pays contenaient des niveaux très élevés d'arsenic. Le ministère a infligé lundi des amendes allant de 420 à 2.000 euros à une cinquantaine d'organismes de presse.Le quotidien Thanh Nien s'est vu de son côté infligé une amende de 8.500 euros pour avoir réalisé sa propre enquête sur la sauce de poisson. [en savoir plus]

MASSIVE SETBACK FOR ROSATOM AS VIETNAM SCRAPS NUCLEAR DEAL
20.11.2016 (fin24) - Hanoi - Vietnam is scrapping plans to build two nuclear power plants over soaring costs and safety concerns, state media reported on Friday.
The communist nation approved plans to build the plants in 2009 in Ninh Thuan province with an eye towards easing energy shortages brought about by its rapidly industrialising economy.
"The total investment has risen too high," Le Hong Tinh, deputy head of Vietnam's Commission of Science, Technology and Environment, was quoted as saying by the Tien Phong newspaper.
Tinh added that the projects could also pose an environmental threat and said the nation could not afford to risk another disaster after a toxic industrial leak triggered mass fish deaths earlier this year. [read more]

AKTIONSPLAN GEGEN WILDEREI UND WILDTIERHANDEL IN HANOI VERABSCHIEDET
18.11.2016 (Der Farang) - HANOI (dpa) - Gut 50 Länder wollen Wilderern und skrupellosen Wildtierhändlern effektiver das Handwerk legen. Sie verabschiedeten dazu am Freitag in Vietnam einen Aktionsplan. Unter anderem kündigte die deutsche Delegation an, afrikanischen Ländern bei der Stärkung der Strafverfolgungsbehörden zu helfen, um mehr Wilderern den Prozess zu machen. Vietnam versprach Aufklärungskampagnen, um die Nachfrage nach Schmuck aus Elfenbein oder angeblichen Potenz- oder Heilmitteln aus Nashorn zu stoppen. China will Touristen mit Broschüren in Flugzeugen davor warnen, Wildtierprodukte zu kaufen.
Der Markt für Körperteile wildlebender Tiere ist in Vietnam und China besonders groß. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM CRACKS DOWN ON DISSENTERS
10.11.2016 (RFA) - The Vietnamese government is escalating a nationwide crackdown on human rights activists and people critical of the government’s handling of the chemical spill that devastated the country’s central coast, according to Amnesty International and other reports.
On Nov. 6, four people were arrested who are connected to a new civil society organization “The Alliance of Self-Determined People.”
All three have been charged with “carrying out activities aimed at overthrowing the people’s administration” under Article 79 of the penal code, according to a report in Vietnam Right Now. [read more]

VIETNAM VERZICHTET AUF BAU EINES ATOMKRAFTWERKS
10.11.2016 (NZZ) - (sda/dpa) Vietnam hat die Pläne für den Bau seines ersten Atomkraftwerks aufgegeben. Es bestehe kein Bedarf an Strom aus dem geplanten Projekt in der südlichen Provinz Ninh Thuan, berichteten staatlich kontrollierte Medien des kommunistischen Einparteienstaates am Donnerstag. [Weiterlesen]

"DIE SOZIALEN MEDIEN SIND VOLL VON UMWELTTHEMEN"
28.10.2016 Rodion Ebbighausen (DW) - Vietnam hat mit einer zunehmenden Anzahl von Umweltproblemen zu kämpfen. Dabei sind die Umweltgesetze eigentlich gut, doch es mangelt an deren Durchsetzung. Warum, erklärt Sonja Schirmbeck von der FES.
Deutsche Welle: Das Fischsterben in der zentralvietnamesischen Provinz Ha Tinh, die Luftverschmutzung in Hanoi, die Shanghai und Peking übertroffen hat … Vietnams Umweltprobleme nehmen offensichtlich zu. Zahlt Vietnam damit den Preis für viele Jahre rasantes Wirtschaftswachstum?
Es ist richtig, dass wir dieses Jahr große Umweltkatastrophen in Vietnam erleben mussten. Neben den genannten gab es noch eine Jahrhundert-Dürre im Mekong-Delta und parallel zu den hohen Smogwerten in Hanoi ein massenhaftes Fischsterben im Westsee. Der See ist für den Fischfang nicht relevant, hat aber eine große symbolische Bedeutung, da er in unmittelbarer Nähe des Regierungsviertels liegt. Die Umweltproblematik ist offenbar außer Kontrolle. Dass immer mehr Fälle publik werden, zeigt, dass sich die Vorfälle immer schlechter vertuschen lassen. [Weiterlesen]

BEYOND VIETNAM’S ‘GREAT FISH KILL’
27.10.2016 By David Brown (Asia Sentinel) - Environmental concerns, human rights issues begin to surface.
“If the problem of human rights isn’t properly solved,” said my friend C.V., “Vietnam is going to be isolated from the international community, and that will make it really hard to develop our country.” We spoke just after blogger Mẹ Nấm was taken into custody on October 10, charged with “distorting the truth, opposing the party line and state policies.”
Western press reports linked the popular blogger’s arrest to her criticism of the Hanoi government’s management of an environmental disaster,  the hundreds of tons of fish killed in April when a newly commissioned foreign-owned steel mill unaccountably released toxic chemicals into coastal waters.  Police told Vietnamese reporters, however, that the charges lodged against Mẹ Nấm were more relate to her compilation of some 31 deaths of individuals in police custody, a list she posted over two years ago.
Hanoi has signed virtually every international agreement on environmental stewardship, but it’s still the party/state that sets the agenda and monopolizes decision-making. The regime’s suspicious of civil society in general, and particularly hostile to organized protest. There’s no acknowledged space for environmental activism of the sort practiced in democracies by not for profit organizations. [read more]

VIETNAM AFFECTED BY POLLUTION FROM LOCAL, CHINESE COAL POWER PLANTS
22.10.2016 (AECEN) - Phung Chi Sy, director of the Environmental Technology Center (ENTEC), noted that coal thermal power plants inevitably cause air pollution and this is the heavy price Vietnam has to pay to continue developing coal power plants to satisfy the increasingly high demand for electricity.
The exhaust gas from power plants such as NOx and SO2 can affect human respiratory system and even cause cancer.
Meanwhile, according to Pham Ngoc Dang, director of the Center for Urban Environment and Industry, more than 50 percent of the coal power plants in Vietnam use Chinese technologies which are outdated, consume more fuel and last a shorter time than technologies from Japan and Germany.
Chinese technologies also do not thoroughly treat the power plants’ waste to the environment. [read more]

POLLUTION DU CENTRE-VIETNAM : DÉPLOIEMENT MASSIF DES FORCES DE L’ORDRE POUR EMPÊCHER LES PÊCHEURS DE DÉPOSER LEURS PLAINTES AU TRIBUNAL
19.10.2016 (Églises d'Asie) - Comme Eglises d’Asie l’avait annoncé, très tôt dans la matinée du 18 octobre, aux alentours de 4 h, plus d’un millier de pêcheurs de la région de Quynh Luu se sont rassemblé dans la cour du presbytère de la paroisse catholique de Phu Yên. Il leur fallait ensuite franchir les quelque 200 km les séparant du Tribunal populaire de Ky Anh, dans la province de Ha Tinh, où ils projetaient de déposer de nouvelles plaintes contre le complexe sidérurgique taïwanais Formosa, responsable de la catastrophe écologique qui a touché les côtes du Centre-Vietnam en avril dernier et a causé des ravages considérables au milieu marin. [en savoir plus]

GIFTIGE ABWÄSSER IM MEER - VIETNAMS MEERESFRÜCHTE-INDUSTRIE UNTER SCHOCK
12.10.2016 (Handelsblatt) -Hanoi - Vergiftetes Wasser spülte Tonnen toter Fische an Land: Nach einer Chemiekatastrophe in Vietnam stehen Meeresfrüchte dort nicht mehr besonders hoch im Kurs. Aber auch die Tourismusbranche kämpft ums Überleben.
Ob Frühlingsrollen mit Krabben oder Tintenfischsalat - in Vietnam gehören Meeresfrüchte und Fisch oft wie selbstverständlich auf den Teller. Aber vielen ist die Lust auf Lebensmittel aus dem Meer gehörig vergangen. Der Grund: Das Wasser ist gefährlich verschmutzt.
Aus dem taiwanesischen Chemiekonzern Formosa Plastics gelangten im Frühjahr giftige Abwässer ins Meer. Unzählige tote Fische wurden an die Küste gespült. Die Angst vor vergifteten Meerestieren ist seitdem allgegenwärtig. Zwar hat Formosa der vietnamesischen Regierung rund 450 Millionen Euro gezahlt, um die betroffenen Fischer zu entschädigen. Doch die Regierung hat das Geld bisher nicht verteilt. [Weiterlesen]

DRIVEN BY ENVIRONMENTAL PROTESTS, VIETNAM TIGHTENS CIVIL LIBERTIES
11.10.2016 (RFA) - There are growing signs that the Vietnamese government is moving to smother dissent, as the one-party regime in recent days has labeled a pro-democracy group a terrorist organization, imprisoned a blogger critical of the government and blockaded a group of activists trying to conduct a civil society workshop.
It is unclear why the Vietnamese government decided to make the moves at this time, but the ruling troika of President Tran Dai Quang, Communist Party Secretary-general Nguyen Phu Trong and Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc appear to be sending a message that they will tolerate little criticism. [read more]

GLOBALE PROTESTE / ENTSCHÄDIGUNGSSUMME ZU GERING
Ethecon - Stiftung Ethik & Ökonomie - Medienerklärung vom 17.08.2016
17.08.2016 (Schattenblick) - Die FORMOSA PLASTIC GROUP (FPG) verursachte durch ein Stahlwerk in Vietnam außerordentlich große Schäden an Mensch und Umwelt.
Durch den entstandenen Druck konnte eine erste Entschädigung in Höhe von 500 Mio. USD erzwungen werden. Die taiwanesische Regierung sicherte gegenüber ethecon zu, sich für Entschädigungen durch FPG einzusetzen. ethecon kritisiert die Höhe und fordert angemessene Zahlungen und Entschädigungen.
Auch die vietnamesische Regierung muss handeln. Wir haben mittlerweile mit dem am von der vietnamesischen Regierung berufenen Expertenteam beteiligten Forscher Dr. Schröder gesprochen. Er bedauerte der Deutschen Stiftung Meeresschutz und auch uns gegenüber, dass das Team keine eigenen Proben des verseuchten Wassers entnehmen durfte und sich bei seinen Berichten auf die bereits existierenden Berichte einheimischer Wissenschaftler stützen musste. Die vietnamesische Regierung muss vollständige Transparenz über Hergang, Qualität und Ausmaß der Katastrophe schaffen. [Weiterlesen]

HOLZSCHMUGGEL ÜBER DIE GRÜNE GRENZE - OHNE KORRUPTION WÄRE DER ILLEGALE HANDEL MIT TROPENHOLZ NICHT MÖGLICH
17.08.2016 Von Robert Luchs (Die Tagespost) - Es sind nicht die Lastwagenfahrer und die zerlumpten Männer mit den Kettensägen, die zum Raubbau des Tropenwaldes beitragen. Diese Männer könnten ihre schlecht bezahlte Arbeit nicht ausführen, wenn sie nicht von Polizeioffizieren und verantwortlichen Bediensteten der Forstbehörden in den nordöstlichen Provinzen Kambodschas gedeckt würden. Und so rollen die vollbeladenen Trucks vor allen Dingen nachts über die grüne Grenze nach Vietnam, obwohl die Regierung in Phnom Penh erst kürzlich wieder ein massives Vorgehen gegen den unkontrollierten Einschlag des Tropenwaldes angekündigt hatte.
Im Vergleich zum Vorjahr hat sich demnach der eigentlich mit einem Verbot belegte Handel verzehnfacht. Zu diesem sprunghaften Anstieg soll auch die laxe Haltung der Vietnamesen beigetragen haben, die nicht länger nach einer Handelserlaubnis fragen. Xuan Phuc von der NGO betont, ohne Korruption sei der Raubbau in dieser Größenordnung nicht möglich. Umweltorganisationen und Dorfbewohner in den östlichen Provinzen berichten, nur eine enge Zusammenarbeit von Polizei, Militär und Grenzbeamten ermögliche es, die riesigen Stämme nach Vietnam zu bringen. [Weiterlesen]

RECORD FINE FEARED TOO SMALL TO COVER DEAD FISH DAMAGE IN VIETNAM
15.08.2016 (VOA) - Observers and activists in Vietnam say a record pollution fine against a foreign-owned steel mill neither compensates all victims nor sends a stern enough warning to the country’s other export manufacturers.
In June, the government fined the plant $500 million, believed to be the largest ever against a company in Vietnam, for fish deaths along 200 kilometers of coastline southeast of Hanoi. The steel making complex also apologized and agreed to clean up the wastewater system.
But people familiar with the issue say the fine cannot cover the continued losses to fishermen, resorts and locals who may have contracted skin diseases from touching the water. They also hope Vietnamese authorities will test the ocean water to ensure it’s now safe.
Environment Minister Tran Hong Ha told local media in June the amount covers only direct material damages, not psychological losses to fishermen who lost income. He called the fine “too small.” [read more]

VIETNAM NOW RIVALS CHINA AS ILLEGAL IVORY HUB
15.08.2016 By John Muchangi (The Star) - The battle to save Kenya’s last 32,000 elephants may largely depend on a vague law in Vietnam, some 7,000 kilometres away.
As a result of China’s tougher stance against illegal ivory, Vietnam has now risen to become one of the world's biggest market for the illegal products.
Two researchers from Kenya visited the country’s expansive ivory markets and found that the amount of ivory on sale has increased by more than 600 per cent in the past eight years.
“Tusks are smuggled into Vietnam, nearly all from Africa, with only a few nowadays from domesticated and wild elephants on Laos and Vietnam,” Lucy Vigne and Esmond Martin say in a report they compiled from their extensive research. [read more]

POLICE ATTACK PROTESTERS IN VIETNAM'S KHANH HOA PROVINCE
12.08.2016 (RFA) - Police in Vietnam’s Khanh Hoa province on Friday beat demonstrators who had gathered to protest a waste-management plant that local villagers fear is polluting the area, according to sources.
“They sent about 200 policemen from the province to crack down on us,” one of the protesters told RFA’s Vietnamese Service. “We are very upset and wanted to hear some explanation from the factory, but they did not talk to us. Instead, they beat us.”
The protester, who gave her name as Nguyen, told RFA that at least five people from Ninh An village, three of them seniors, were sent to the hospital with injuries sustained in the beatings.
“They hit people on their necks and heads,” she said.  “Some were severely injured and sent to the hospital.” [read more]

VIETNAM'S SOLUTION TO FISH DEATH SCANDAL LEAVES MANY LOCALS UNSATISFIED
11.08.2016 Ralph Jennings (Forbes) - This stinky chapter in Vietnam’s current affairs log was supposed to be over. After 80 tons of dead fish washed up on central coast beaches in April, citizens protested that the government moved too slowly in finding the cause. After weeks of sporadic demonstrations, some of them squelched, and another month of checking around for causes, the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry named Taiwanese-invested Formosa Ha Tinh steel plant the culprit for releasing toxic chemicals into the ocean. The subsidiary of Formosa Plastics Group paid $500 million to help fishing communities, apologized and agreed to clean up its waste system.
That was supposed to close the case of the initially mysterious pileup of millions of fish from April 4 to 15. But now it’s August and a lot of things still smell fishy if you ask around in Vietnam.
About 5 million people in four provinces were hurt by the fish deaths and a lot have yet to recover, says Duc Truong, part of the Vietnamese NGO Democracy Brotherhood and an independent journalist who investigated the kill. [read more]

ANTI-POLLUTION PROTESTERS DEMAND TAIWAN’S FORMOSA QUIT VIETNAM
10.08.2016 (The Manila Times) - TAIPEI: Angry Vietnamese protesters rallied in Taiwan Wednesday calling for local conglomerate Formosa to leave their country after an environmental disaster affected hundreds of thousands of people.
The demonstration outside Formosa’s headquarters, in Taiwan’s capital Taipei, included relatives with families in the area at the center of the scandal, which saw tons of dead fish wash up along Vietnam’s central coastline in April.
Around 40 protesters, all Vietnamese currently living and working in Taiwan, held placards reading “Formosa out of Vietnam” and “Damaging the environment is killing people.” [read more]

THE WORST DROUGHT IN DECADES IS CRUSHING VIETNAM, BUT THERE'S STILL HOPE THINGS WILL GET BETTER LATER THIS YEAR
10.08.2016 Chloe Pfeiffer (Business Insider) - It’s been understood for a while that Vietnam will probably not reach the ambitious growth target it set for itself in 2016. Its growth in the second quarter was a pretty lackluster 5.6%, bringing first half growth to a total of 5.5% — well below its 6.7% target.
So the economy probably isn’t going to grow by nearly enough in the rest of the year to make 2016 look great. The new Prime Minister, Nguyen Xuan Phuc — who succeeded former Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung after he set an even more ambitious target of 7% earlier this year — even said it would be “hard to achieve” the necessary expansion in the second half of 2016.
One of the biggest causes of Vietnam’s problems in 2016 has been a huge drought — the worst in three decades and caused in part by El Niño. [read more]

VIETNAM CATHOLICS DEFY CRITICS, OBSERVE ENVIRONMENT DAY
State media criticism of church event draws fire from local netizens
09.08.2016 (UCANews) - State media have accused church leaders of causing social disorder and attempting to dupe foreign donors by holding a Day for the Environment on Aug. 7.
Catholics in Vinh Diocese, northern Vietnam, observed the environmental celebration by holding Mass and adoration, conducting peaceful demonstrations and cleaning up garbage from around their parishes.
The diocese’s Justice and Peace Commission initiated the event to raise public awareness about environmental protection. [read more]

HANOI SILENT ON TREATMENT: DPP’S SU
05.08.2016 By Chen Wei-han (The Taipei Times) - Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Su Chih-feng (蘇治芬) yesterday said that the Vietnamese government did not give any explanation for a series of difficulties she encountered on a trip this week.
Su and her entourage returned from Vietnam yesterday after a five-day trip to learn more about a pollution incident involving a Formosa Plastics Group steel mill in Ha Tinh Province, visit a Catholic orphanage in Vinh and purchase Vietnamese children’s books to promote mother-tongue education in Yunlin County.
She said that even after the visit, the group did not understand anything about the pollution incident other than what was reported by the media, but she questioned the transparency of the Vietnamese government’s investigation.
“We cannot reach a definite conclusion on the pollution incident,” Su said. “The Vietnamese government is obliged to make its investigation report public.” [read more]

NGHI THIET FISHERMEN PROTEST NEW PORT: POLICE BEAT THEM
03.08.2016 (AsiaNews) - Hanoi (AsiaNews / RFA) - The Vietnamese police forcibly broke up a demonstration by fishermen in the village of Nghi Thiet (Nghe An province) and beat some protesters. Several protesters were hospitalized and officers did not even spare the elderly.
The protests, which began last July 30, are against the construction of a new port that would favor one of the largest cement companies in Vietnam. The fishermen - whose livelihood is made impossible by cargo ships - demand compensation which authorities do not want to concede.
100 plainclothes police officers blocked some streets of the city with fire trucks and ambulances. About 700 fishermen then braved the police who started beating the demonstrators. [read more]

 VIETNAM PROBES HARMFUL WASTE DUMPING FROM TAIWANESE FIRM
03.08.2016 (AP Big Story) - HANOI, Vietnam — Vietnamese police have launched an investigation into the illegal dumping of harmful waste material from a Taiwanese steel company already under fire for massive fish deaths in what officials say was the country's worst environmental disaster.
Bui Dinh Quang, deputy police chief in Ha Tinh province where a unit of the Formosa Plastics Group is located, said a local company was the target of the investigation after police last month caught the company burying the industrial waste at a private farm.
About 390 tons of the waste was buried in two places, including on the private farm in Ha Tinh province, Quang said. [read more]

LAWMAKER RESPONDS AFTER PASSPORT HELD
03.08.2016 By Alison Hsiao (The Taipei Times) - Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Chih-feng (蘇治芬) yesterday urged people to refrain from “excessive imagination and interpretation” after her passport was held at Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi on Monday. Su flew to Vietnam on Sunday with her staff and several academics.
Su said that the reason Vietnamese authorities held her passport was unclear, adding that she still has faith in President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) “new southbound policy.”
In a Facebook post, Su said the goal of her trip was to better understand the pollution incident involving Formosa Ha Tinh Steel — a subsidiary of Formosa Plastics that apparently discharged toxic waste into the sea, causing mass fish deaths — gauging the room for development for the “new southbound policy” and purchasing Vietnamese children’s books to promote mother-tongue education in Yunlin.
Su also said that the group was being followed by plainclothes police, who have been taking pictures of the group and reporting to the authorities the details of their itinerary. [read more]

TAIWANESE LAWMAKER HELD IN VIETNAM AIRPORT
02.08.2016 By Sun Hsin Hsuan (The China Post) - TAIPEI, Taiwan -- A legislator visiting Vietnam to seek cooperation opportunities for Taipei's "New Southbound Policy" was held for nine hours at an airport while en route to a Taiwanese-built steel plant that in April was blamed for that country's "most serious environment crisis."
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmaker Su Chih-fen (蘇治芬) wrote on her Facebook page Monday afternoon that Vietnamese authorities had confiscated her passport and refused to issue her a boarding pass.
Su and her team were at the Noi Bai International Airport, which is the largest airport in northern Vietnam and which serves the capital city Hanoi. They were heading to Vinh City, where they planned to transfer to Ha Tinh by bus to visit the multibillion-dollar steel plant, constructed by Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corporation (台塑河靜鋼鐵興業), a subsidiary of Taiwanese conglomerate Formosa Plastics. [read more]

HISTORIA DE DOS CAMARONEROS: ¿CÓMO AFECTA EL CAMBIO CLIMÁTICO AL DELTA DEL RÍO MEKONG?
02.08.2016 (iAgua) - El delta del río Mekong en Viet Nam es famoso por sus campos de arroz, estanques de camarones, diques y canales. Este fértil mosaico sostiene los medios de subsistencia de más de 17 millones de personas. Pero el cambio climático, la escasez de agua y la contaminación deterioran la estructura de la vida económica en la zona. Se necesitan nuevos enfoques para gestionar la tierra y el agua en tiempos de incertidumbre.
La vulnerabilidad del delta del Mekong se hizo evidente este año, cuando se registró una sequía histórica. Las condiciones meteorológicas extremas se combinaron con bajos caudales del río, junto con el desarrollo de los países situados en el nivel superior de la desembocadura. Muchos agricultores se quedaron con poca agua dulce y tuvieron que buscar maneras de adaptarse.
En una visita reciente a la provincia de Ca Mau, en el extremo meridional de Viet Nam, expertos agrícolas describieron cómo se había marchitado el arroz y se habían muerto los camarones y los peces. [seguir leyendo]

FPG PAYS FIRST HALF OF COMPENSATION FOR VIETNAMESE AFFECTED BY MILL POLLUTION
01.08.2016 (The Taipei Times) - Vietnamese Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Tran Hong Ha said in a televised meeting held by the nation’s parliament that FPG paid US$250 million in compensation on Thursday last week for the damage inflicted by the pollution, and the other half of the compensation is expected to be paid on Aug. 28.
He said that the government placed the first payment in a single bank account and would distribute the funds to the victims of the pollution and also use the funds to clean the toxic waste discharged by FPG’s steel complex, Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp (台塑河靜鋼鐵興業), located in the Vung Ang Economic Zone in Ha Tinh Province, central Vietnam. [read more]

FISCHSTERBEN: VIETNAMESISCHE KÜSTE GROßFLÄCHIG VERSEUCHT - KEINE LÖSUNG FÜR SÄUBERUNG IN SICHT
27.07.2016 (Deutsche Stiftung Meeresschutz) - Zur Untersuchung der Umweltkatastrophe hatte die vietnamesische Regierung auch internationale Experten zu Rate gezogen. Doch leider wurde deren Aufgabe darauf eingeschränkt, zu den von einheimischen Wissenschaftlern der Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology (VAST) erstellten Berichten Stellung zu nehmen und eine oberflächliche Besichtigung vor Ort vorzunehmen, wie der beteiligte deutsche Experte Dr. Friedhelm Schroeder berichtet. Eigene Probenentnahmen oder Untersuchungen waren nicht möglich, bedauert der Chemiker, der 25 Jahre Mitarbeiter des Helmholtz-Zentrums Geesthacht war und jetzt als wissenschaftlicher Berater tätig ist.
Vietnamesische Wissenschaftler gehen davon aus, dass es mindestens 50 Jahre dauern wird, bis sich das zerstörte Ökosystem an der Küste wieder erholt hat. Eine derart lange Regenerationszeit hält auch Dr. Schroeder – zumindest für die geschädigten Korallenriffe - nicht für ausgeschlossen, ursächlich dafür allerdings sieht er nicht den Einzelfall der jetzigen Katastrophe, sondern generell den praktisch nicht vorhandenen Umweltschutz in Vietnam.
"Das gesamte betroffene Küstengebiet steht voller Fabriken, die ihre Abwässer größtenteils ungeklärt ins Meer leiten", erklärt er und kritisiert, dass man bei der Ursachenerforschung andere mögliche Verursacher völlig außer Acht gelassen habe. Vorstellbar sei auch, dass das Immunsystem der Fische durch die dauernde Umweltbelastung schon so geschwächt ist, dass nun ein "kleinerer" Auslöser genügt habe, an dem sie dann starben. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAMESE REPORTERS ATTACKED AND BEATEN DURING FORMOSA STEEL FIRM INVESTIGATION
23.07.2016 (Asian Correspondent) - THREE Vietnamese journalists were beaten while attempting to investigate a waste scandal involving Taiwanese-owned Formosa steel firm in the northern Phu Ninh District.
Police in the district confirmed that the three reporters, two men and one woman from Lao Dong newspaper and VTC14 television channel, were attacked on Friday at the Phu Ha Environment Company.
The Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Corp. had reportedly moved 145 tons of “dangerous” waste from the Ha Tinh Province, over 500 kilometres away, to Phu Ninh. Reporters went to investigate after receiving complaints about the waste from residents in the area. [read more]

IRRIGATION IN MEKONG BASIN TO EXPAND FARMLAND THREATENS VIETNAM’S DELTA
23.07.2016 (The Nation) - SOUTHERN Vietnam is highly vulnerable to more drought and salinisation in the future when its fellow countries in the lower Mekong river basin irrigate the river water to serve their expanding farm land, experts warn.
The lower basin of the trans-boundary Mekong River starts from Laos and runs through Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam before emptying into the East Sea (South China Sea). Any attempts to interrupt the natural status of the river would pose risks to Vietnam's Cuu Long (Mekong) delta where more than 17 million people rely on the river for a living. [read more]

FORMOSA STEEL VERURSACHT UMWELTKATASTROPHE IN VIETNAM
20.07.2016 Ulrike Kirsch (Deutsche Stiftung Meeresschutz Juli 2016) - Küstengewässer auf Jahrzehnte zerstört – Massives Fischsterben – Hunderttausende verlieren Lebensgrundlage.
Ende Juni sollte die Roheisengewinnung im erst Ende 2015 in Betrieb genommenen Stahlwerk Formosa Steel Ha Tinh in Vietnam beginnen. Doch bereits in der Pilotphase kam es zu einer Umweltkatastrophe, die die Küste verseuchte, die Lebensgrundlage vieler Fischer und Aquafarmer zerstörte und auch der Tourismusbranche tiefe Einschnitte bereiten wird.
Auf einem über 200 km langen, sich über vier vietnamesische Provinzen (Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Tri) erstreckenden Küstenabschnitt setzte Anfang April ein massives Fischsterben ein. Insgesamt 277 Tonnen Fische aus Hoch- und Tiefsee wurden tot angeschwemmt bzw. starben in den zahlreichen Fischfarmen in diesem Gebiet, wie vietnamesische Medien berichten.
Doch die Regierung unternahm nichts zur Aufklärung oder zum Schutz der Bevölkerung, öffentlich wurde das Ganze ohnehin erst nur auf Facebook am 6. April. Stattdessen ließ man Kundgebungen – mitunter brutal – zerschlagen und Demonstranten festnehmen. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAMESE PROTESTERS DEMAND JUSTICE DESPITE GOVERNMENT SETTLEMENT ON FISH KILLS
17.07.2016 Written by Don Le (Global Voices) - Netizens have quickly jumped online to share their frustration with the investigation process following the Vietnamese government’s media conference regarding the cause of the environmental disaster which led to 70 tonnes of dead fish being washed up ashore.
The mysterious fish kill which destroyed the livelihoods of fisherfolk across central Vietnam was largely attributed to dirty discharge from the industrial plant of Formosa, a Taiwanese company.
Following the release of the findings and announcement that Formosa had agreed to pay $500 million USD in compensation for the environmental disaster, the Facebook community responded by asserting that the compensation is insignificant in the context of the damage Formosa has wreaked on the environment. [read more]

FORMOSA PLASTICS - AUFKLÄRUNG UND VOLLSTÄNDIGE ENTSCHÄDIGUNG. JETZT!
15.07.2016 Von Ethecon (scharf-links) - FORMOSA HA TINH STEEL, eine Tochter der FORMOSA PLASTIC GROUP (FPG), ist für das große Fischsterben in Vietnam verantwortlich. Die Hauptversammlung des Konzerns in Taiwan war begleitet von breiten öffentlichen Protesten. ethecon überreichte im Saal einen Offenen Brief. Auch die taiwanesische und vietnamesische Regierungen erhielten einen Offenen Brief, entzogen sich allerdings jeglicher Reaktion. ethecon - Stiftung Ethik & Ökonomie fordert weiterhin eine lückenlosen Aufklärung des Verbrechens an Mensch und Umwelt, eine angemessenen Entschädigung aller Betroffenen, eine Säuberung sämtlicher betroffener Biotope sowie eine nachhaltige Lösung für die Abwasserentsorgung des Stahlwerks.
Der Konzern bietet nun 500 mio. USD als Entschädigung an, dass entspricht 450 Mio. Euro. Diese Summe ist in Anbetracht des Ausmaßes der Katastrophe allerdings geradezu absurd.
Sarah Schneider, Geschäftsführerin von ethecon: „ 450 Millionen Euro sind für den Schaden an der Umwelt und für eine Entschädigung der betroffenen rund 2 Millionen Fischer_Innen sowie deren Angehörige eine Provokation. Der Konzern muss angemessen entschädigen zahlen und für eine nachhaltige Säuberung aller betroffener Biotope einstehen.“ [Weiterlesen]

UMWELTKATASTROPHE IN VIETNAM
30.04.2016 (Save Vietnam's Nature) - Nahezu unbemerkt von der Öffentlichkeit ist Vietnam seit ein paar Wochen von einer Umweltkatastrophe betroffen.
Bereits Anfang April 2016 wurden vermehrt tote Fische in den Küstenprovinzen von Zentralvietnam gefunden. Jetzt in der letzten Aprilwoche erreicht das Massensterben mit hunderttausenden von toten Fische den vorläufigen Höhepunkt. Für die Fischer ist dies das Aus für ihre Lebensgrundlage.
Ich wähle Fisch
Die Ursache für das massive Fischsterben ist noch unbekannt. Regierung und Industrie weisen jede Schuld weit von sich. Das in der Industriezone Vung Ang, Provinz Ha Tinh, befindliche Stahlwerk "Formosa Ha Tinh Steel Company (FHS)" steht unter dem Verdacht, giftiges Abwasser ins Meer geleitet zu haben. Die FHS bestreitet jegliche Verantwortung für die Katastrophe, da angeblich alle gesetzlichen Anforderungen erfüllt seien. Zuerst entschuldigte sich Chu Xuan Pham, ein leitender FHS-Manager, für die Katastrophe. Mit der Aussage “To be honest, we must lose some to win some. You want the fish or the steel plant? You have to choose.” ("Um ehrlich zu sein, man muss etwas verlieren, um etwas zu gewinnen. Willst du Fische oder willst du ein Stahlwerk?. Du musst dich entscheiden") versuchte Chu sich zu rechtfertigen.  Selten ist ein Manager so „ehrlich“ wie der FHS-Manager. Als Konsequenz seiner „Ehrlichkeit“ wurde Chu sofort entlassen, da sein Statement nicht der offiziellen Sprachregelung des Unternehmens entspricht.
Und die Regierung in Hanoi? Sie verharrt im Nichtstun. Die Katastrophe trifft sie völlig unvorbereitet, es gibt gar kein funktionierendes Krisenmanagement. Kein Ministerium fühlt sich für den Fall zuständig. Zuerst ging die lokale  Behörde von Ha Tinh in die Öffentlichkeit und behauptete , sie habe keine Erlaubnis zur Durchführung von Untersuchungen, weil das Stahlwerk ausländisches Eigentum sei. Später versuchte es das Ministerium für Industrie und Handel mit einem Besuch bei der FHS – der Ausgang ist unbekannt. Schließlich gab am 27.04.2016 der stellvertretende Minister für Ressourcen und Umwelt (Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment) Vo Tuan Nhan in einer 10-minütien Pressekonferenz bekannt, dass toxische Chemikalien, von Menschen ins Meer ausgeschieden, und eine  Algenblüte die Ursache für das Fischsterben sind. Nach Ansicht Vos ist die FHS nicht für das Fischsterben verantwortlich. Fragen waren bei der Pressekonferenz nicht zugelassen.
Vietnamesische Umweltschützer geben sich mit der Erklärung des Minisierums für  Ressourcen und Umwelt nicht zufrieden. Sie rufen am Tag der Arbeit (01.05.2016) zu einer Massendemonstration gegen vom Menschen verursachte Umweltkatastrophen im Zentrum  der  vietnamesischen Hauptstadt Hanoi auf. (had)

30 JAHRE NACH TSCHERNOBYL
«In Russland laufen noch immer elf Reaktoren des Typs Tschernobyl»
26.04.2016 Von Peter Jaeggi (tageswoche) - 30 Jahre nach dem Super-GAU in Tschernobyl laufen in Russland noch immer elf Reaktoren vom selben Typ. Der Ingenieur Wladimir Kuznetsov warnt vor den Gefahren, doch weder in Russland noch in Westeuropa findet er Gehör.
Am 26. April 1986 explodierte im ukrainischen Atomkraftwerk Tschernobyl der Reaktorblock 4. Ursache waren längst bekannte Konstruktionsfehler und eine Kette von Fehlentscheiden. Rund fünf Millionen Menschen in Weissrussland, Russland und der Ukraine waren direkt betroffen. 40 Prozent des europäischen Kontinents und Teile Vorderasiens und Nordafrikas wurden kontaminiert.
Tschernobyl lief damals unter der Regie Moskaus in der ehemaligen Sowjetunion. 30 Jahre nach dem bis heute schwersten atomaren GAU sind in Russland noch immer elf Reaktoren desselben Typs in Betrieb. Der russische Atomingenieur und AKW-Kritiker Wladimir Kuznetsov äussert sich im Gespräch besorgt über die Sicherheit russischer und ukrainischer Atomkraftwerke. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM'S LOWLANDS TO GO UNDER WITH CLIMATE CHANGE, BANK REPORT SAYS
13.04.2016 By Matthew Clayfield (ABC) - When it comes to climate change, Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City is one of the world's 10 most vulnerable cities.
As a result, around 70 per cent of its urban area may experience severe flooding in coming decades, according to a recent Asian Development Bank report.
The Mekong Delta to the west of Ho Chi Minh City produces 20 per cent of the country's GDP and is home to 22 per cent of its population.
In 1990, 160 million tonnes of revitalising silt flowed down the Mekong to the sea, allowing the coastline to rebuild itself.
Now only 75 million tonnes make it. [read more]

MEKONG MEGADROUGHT ERODES FOOD SECURITY
06.04.2016 By Christina Larson (Science AAAS) - The worst drought ever recorded in Vietnam is stoking fears of a food security crisis. In a meeting with government officials next week, researchers with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT)’s Asia regional office in Hanoi will unveil maps showing how water scarcity and climate change may imperil key crops—rice, cassava, maize, coffee, and cashew nuts—across the country.
"The severity of this year's drought will have a profound impact on Mekong delta agricultural production,” says Brian Eyler, deputy director of the Southeast Asia Program at the Stimson Center in Washington, D.C. [read more]

SALZNIVEAUS GEFÄHRDEN OBSTERTRÄGE VON VIETNAM
24.03.2016 (Fruchtportal) - Die Erzeuger in einigen Provinzen von Vietnams Mekong-Delta haben Probleme mit einer schweren Versalzung, die ein Anbaugebiet mit lokalen Obstgärten schädigt. Die Provinzen Tieng Giang und Ben Tre werden beide wegen ihrer weiten Plantagen in dem Mekong-Delta als 'Obstkönigreiche' bezeichnet.
Anders als in den Vorjahren hat 2016 Salzwasser die Flüsse und Staubecken nahe dieser lokalen Obstgärten infiltriert, was dazu führt, dass die Erzeuger ihre Pflanzen unwissentlich mit Wasser bewässerten, das einen hohen Salzgehalt enthält. [Weiterlesen]

FÜNF JAHRE DANACH
11.03.2016 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Die Dreifachkatastrophe vom 11. März 2011 jährt sich zum fünften Mal. Es folgte der verheerende Unfall im AKW Fukushima 1. Auch wenn es medial ruhiger geworden ist, ist das Land noch weit davon entfernt die Katastrophe verarbeitet zu haben. Heute liegt die offizielle Zahl der Toten gemäss der Chugoku Shimbun bei 15’894. Weitere 2561 Menschen gelten noch immer als vermisst. 75 gefundene Körperteile konnten nicht identifiziert werden. Über 90 Prozent der gefundenen Toten starben durch Ertrinken.
Die Zahl der Menschen, die wegen dem Tsunami oder der AKW-Katastrophe von ihrer Heimat wegziehen mussten, liegt bei 174’000 Menschen. Davon leben noch immer 57’677 Menschen in provisorischen Fertighäusern in Präfekturen Fukushima, Miyagi und Iwate, die am härtesten getroffen wurden. Der Wohnungsbau kommt wegen einem Mangel an Bauarbeitern nicht genug schnell voran. [Weiterlesen]

GERICHT SCHALTET AKW AB
10.03.2016 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Das Bezirksgericht von Otsu in der Präfektur Shiga hat in einem Urteil angeordnet, das Ende Januar wieder hochgefahrene AKW Takahama abzuschalten, wie NHK News berichtet. Die von Betreiber Kansai Electric Power ausgearbeiteten Notfall- und Evakuierungsmassnahmen bei einem Unfall oder einem Tsunami seien ungenügend, heisst es. Das Urteil gilt für beide wieder betriebsfähigen Reaktoren 3 und 4. Diese einstweilige Verfügung ist in dieser Form ein Novum. Erstmals überhaupt hat ein Gericht einen Stopp eines AKW angeordnet, das die strengeren Sicherheitsprüfungen nach Fukushima bestanden hat und wieder in Betrieb genommen wurde. [Weiterlesen]

FUKUSHIMA AUCH NACH FÜNF JAHREN SCHWER VERSEUCHT
10.03.2016 Bianca Blei (derStandard.at) - Fukushima/Wien – Es ist 14.46 Uhr, als das schwere Erdbeben vor fünf Jahren in der japanischen Präfektur zu spüren ist. 40 Minuten später trifft der erste Tsunami auf das Kernkraftwerk Fukushima Daiichi. Drei nukleare Kernschmelzen waren die Folge – die größte atomare Katastrophe seit Tschernobyl. Mehr als 150.000 Menschen mussten ihre Häuser verlassen und wurden in Sicherheit gebracht. Und noch immer ist die Katastrophe nicht überstanden.
Zwar beteuern die japanischen Behörden, dass vor allem die Gebiete nordwestlich des Atomkraftwerks – wohin der Wind zu dem Zeitpunkt wehte – dekontaminiert sind. Doch zeigen Untersuchungen der Umweltschutzorganisation Greenpeace, dass selbst in den bereits gesäuberten Bereichen die Strahlenwerte viel zu hoch sind.  [Weiterlesen]

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS OF FUKUSHIMA NUCLEAR DISASTER WILL LAST ‘DECADES TO CENTURIES’ – GREENPEACE
04.03.2016 by Hanis Maketab (Asian Correspondent) - A WEEK before the fifth anniversary of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, Greenpeace has released a bleak 52-page report compiling the research of scientists looking into the environmental impact of the catastrophe over the past few years.
In the report, Greenpeace said that based on research on environmental impacts of the 1986 Chernobyl incident – the only other nuclear disaster of a similar scale – reductions in radiation levels are largely expected to level out at around four to five years.
“After that time, both forest and aquatic ecosystems reach a fairly ‘stable’ state of persistent contamination,” it said. [read more]

PANNE BEIM AKW-COMEBACK
01.03.2016 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Ende Januar wurde der Reaktor 3 des AKW Takahama aufgeschaltet. Es war der dritte Reaktor in Japan, der wieder hochgefahren wurde (Asienspiegel berichtete). Am 26. Februar folgte Reaktor 4 des AKW Takahama. Doch nur drei später wurde dieser wieder automatisch abgeschaltet, wie die Nikkei Shimbun berichtete.
Laut Betreiber Kanasai Electric Power wurde ein Alarm ausgelöst, als der Reaktor dabei war, wieder Strom zu generieren. Die Sicherheitssysteme und das Kühlsystem funktionierten, es sei zudem zu keinen Schäden gekommen, wurde betont. Der Zwischenfall soll nun genauer untersucht werden. Wie es danach weitergeht, ist noch nicht klar. [Weiterlesen]

STUNNING PHOTOS OF NORWAY'S REINDEER HIDE A RADIOACTIVE SECRET
26.02.2016 (The Huffington Post) - Nearly three decades have passed since the devastating meltdown at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Pripyat, Ukraine. Yet, all these years later the fallout from the disaster continues to have a detrimental environmental effect.
The deadly 1986 explosion at Chernobyl resulted in a mass evacuation and the relocation of hundreds of thousands of people living in surrounding areas. Radiation spread across the region.
Today, more than 1,000 miles away from the disaster site, residual poisons linger in the quiet pastures of central Norway in an unsuspecting host: radioactive reindeer. [read more]

PANNENREAKTOR IN BELGIEN VOM NETZ GENOMMEN JETZT IST ES DIE PUMPE
23.02.2016 (ARD) - Nach Auffälligkeiten an einer Pumpe ist im umstrittenen belgischen AKW Tihange nahe der deutschen Grenze ein Reaktor runtergefahren worden. Mal wieder: Für drei Wochen bleibt er vom Netz, erklärte Betreiber Electrabel.
In der nur 65 Kilometer entfernten Grenzregion Aachen, wird diese Nachricht mit besonderer Aufmerksamkeit verfolgt: Ein Reaktor des umstrittenen belgischen Atomkraftwerks Tihange ist nach einem Zwischenfall erneut abgeschaltet worden.
Im Kernkraftwerk Tihange war es immer wieder zu Zwischenfällen gekommen. Der jetzt betroffene Block 1 war zuletzt im Dezember 2015 wegen eines Feuers kurzzeitig außer Betrieb. Im nächsten Frühjahr soll er wieder für drei bis vier Monate vom Netz genommen werden, um Wartungsarbeiten zur Laufzeitverlängerung durchzuführen [read more]

JAPAN: FUKUSHIMA CLEAN-UP MAY TAKE UP TO 40 YEARS, PLANT'S OPERATOR SAYS
11.02.2016 By Yoko Wakatsuki, CNN and Elaine Yu, for CNN (CNN) - Tokyo - Cleaning up Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, which suffered catastrophic meltdowns after an earthquake and tsunami hit in 2011, may take up to 40 years.
The crippled nuclear reactor is now stable but the decommissioning process is making slow progress, says the plant's operator Tokyo Electric Power Co, better known as TEPCO. [read more]

DIE RÜCKKEHR DER ATOMENERGIE
30.01.2016 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Am 30. Januar 2016 wurde der Reaktor 3 des AKW Takahama in der Präfektur Fukui nach vier Jahren Stillstand wieder hochgefahren, wie die Nikkei Shimbun berichtet. Die Nukleare Regulierungsbehörde (NRA) hatte schon vor einigen Monaten die Bewilligung erteilt und das Kernkraftwerk nach Anpassungen für sicher befunden. Zuvor wurde noch ein gerichtliches Verbot des Betriebs (Asienspiegel berichtete) vom selben Bezirksgericht wieder gekippt.
Somit hat Kansai Electric Power erstmals wieder einen AKW-Reaktor am Laufen. Fast fünf Jahre nach der AKW-Katastrophe von Fukushima sind somit wieder drei von 43 Reaktoren wieder in Betrieb. Dazu gehören neben Takahama auch die Reaktoren Nummer 1 und 2 im AKW Sendai bei Kagoshima auf der Südinsel Kyushu.
Die AKW-Gegnerschaft hat inzwischen an Einfluss verloren, auch wenn sie auf lokaler und gerichtlicher Ebene immer noch aktiv ist. Sie war es, die massgeblich zu einem zwischenzeitlichen Stopp aller AKW beigetragen hatte. Doch es gelang ihr nicht, sich auf politischer Ebene zu organisieren. Und dies trotz der Tatsache, dass eine Mehrheit der Bevölkerung gemäss wiederholten Umfragen den Atomausstieg bis heute befürwortet. [Weiterlesen]

WINDSTROM IST BILLIGER ALS ATOMKRAFT: NEUE STUDIE ZEIGT ALTERNATIVE ZUM BRITISCHEN AKW HINKLEY
21.01.2016 (finanzen.net) - Der britische Strombedarf lässt sich erheblich kostengünstiger durch Windenergie in Kombination mit der ökologischen Speichertechnik Windgas decken, als dies mit dem geplanten Atomkraftwerk Hinkley Point C der Fall wäre. Das zeigt eine vom deutschen Ökoenergieanbieter Greenpeace Energy in Auftrag gegebene Kurzstudie des Analyseinstituts Energy Brainpool.
Die Berliner Forscher haben dafür eine Stromversorgung aus neuen Windenergieanlagen, Gaskraftwerken und so genannten Windgasanlagen berechnet, die überschüssigen Windstrom in Wasserstoff umwandeln und somit speicherbar machen. [Weiterlesen]

JAPAN TO RESTART ANOTHER NUCLEAR REACTOR JAN 29, 1ST ON MOX FUEL
22.01.2016 (Japan Today) - TOKYO — A nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture is expected to restart operations on Jan 29, the first that will run on uranium-plutonium mixed oxide fuel under new safety regulations, sources close to the matter said Thursday.
Last April, a district court banned Kansai Electric from restarting the Nos. 3 and 4 reactors of the Takahama plant citing safety concerns. But since the court lifted the injunction last month, the utility is now making preparations to reactivate the two reactors on the Sea of Japan coast, with the restart of the No. 4 unit planned for late February. [read more]

WORLD BANK DEBARS SFC VIETNAM INVESTMENT DEVELOPMENT FOR ENVIRONMENT CORPORATION FOR SANCTIONABLE MISCONDUCT RELATING TO TWO PROJECTS IN VIETNAM
18.12.2015 (World Bank) - WASHINGTON — The World Bank Group this week announced the debarment of SFC Vietnam Investment Development for Environment Corporation and its affiliates for a minimum of 10 years and its General Director, Mr. Nguyen Phuong Quy and any entity that he directly controls for a minimum of 11 years. The decision announced by the World Bank Independent Sanctions Board is based on evidence of fraudulent and collusive practices under the Vietnam Project Preparation Technical Assistance Facility Project and the Vietnam Danang Priority Infrastructure Investment Project.
The World Bank investigation revealed the company has engaged in repeated patterns of misconduct which involved the General Director. [read more]

DIE LETZTEN KRAGENBÄREN DER HALONG-BUCHT
03.11.2015 Anemi Wick (DW) - Nach wie vor werden bedrohte Tierarten in Vietnam als Delikatessen oder Heilmittel gehandelt. Der Schutz von Bär, Tiger und Schuppentieren ist ein Wettlauf mit der Zeit.
Ein Team der Tierschutzorganisation "Animals Asia" hat in den vergangenen Monaten in der vietnamesischen Provinz Quang Ninh unweit der berühmten Touristenattraktion Halong-Bucht insgesamt 33 Kragenbären befreit. Die unter Artenschutz stehenden Tiere werden in Vietnam und China gehalten, um ihren Gallensaft abzuzapfen, der als traditionelle Medizin verwendet wird. [read more]

MEKONG DAMS 'A GRAVE THREAT TO RIVER'
02.11.2015 Nirmal Ghosh (The Straits Times) - BANGKOK • Experts are warning that the Lower Mekong Basin may soon face depleting fish stocks, further erosion of the coastline and rising salinity that will make rice fields uncultivable.
"The facts are stronger than ever," said Mr Marc Goichot, an expert on sustainable hydropower and river basin management, who works with the World Wide Fund for Nature in Vietnam.
The mighty Mekong, dammed in the far north in China, and with 11 more dams planned or under construction, mostly in Laos, is delivering less of the nutrient-rich sediment that stabilises the coast and supports fish breeding. [read more]

BUDDHIST LEADERS AROUND THE WORLD JOIN CALL TO END CLIMATE CHANGE
31.10.2015 By Rina Marie Doctor (Tech Times) - Buddhist leaders called on world heads to act now and end climate change through a letter released on Thursday, Oct. 29. Dalai Lama together with 14 other officials signed the letter, which urges the eradication of fossil fuels and promotion of total use of renewable energy.
The letter, entitled "Buddhist Climate Change Statement to World Leaders," is said to be the first time that Buddhist heads came together to address a global issue. [read more]

ERSTE KREBSERKRANKUNG DURCH FUKUSHIMA-KATASTROPHE BESTÄTIGT
20.10.2015 (derStandard) - Tokio – Viereinhalb Jahre nach der Atomkatastrophe von Fukushima hat die japanische Regierung erstmals offiziell bestätigt, dass ein früherer Angestellter des Kraftwerks aufgrund der radioaktiven Strahlung nach der Kernschmelze an Krebs erkrankt ist. "Der Fall erfüllt die Kriterien", sagte ein Vertreter des Gesundheitsministeriums am Dienstag.
Bei dem Mann, der nach der Havarie 2011 in dem Atomkraftwerk gearbeitet habe, sei Leukämie diagnostiziert worden. [Weiterlesen]

HISTORIC FLOODS SHOW TRUE COST OF VIETNAM'S CHEAP COAL
15.10.2015 By Tan Qiuyi (Channel NewsAsia) - Vietnam’s coal industry was hit by one of its worst environmental disasters this year after torrential rain flooded its coal hub in the northeast Quang Ninh province, causing landslides and toxic coal ash spills.
The deluge came from the mountain of coal waste right next to the neighbourhood, and questions remain over the cause of the spill. Residents say the dump site did not have a visible dam or retaining wall.
Mong Duong is one of the many towns across Vietnam’s vast Quang Ninh province where coal is at the heart of the local economy.
Activists call for a switch to renewable energy like wind and solar, but energy experts say there are no easy answers to Vietnam's exponential need for electricity. [read more]

EVEN FAITH CAN BE WIPED OUT BY BELIEF IN NUCLEAR POWER
14.10.2015 Michiko Yoshii (The Asahi Shimbun) - Dokeiji, an ancient temple of the Soto sect, stands on land owned by the Soma clan since the Kamakura Period (1185-1333). Das Hotel liegt im Stadtteil Odaka Minami-Soma, Fukushima Prefecture, sitzt es fast in den Schatten des betroffenen Fukushima No. 1 Kernkraftwerk.
We were there for a session of "Societies of Sustainability and Sufficiency: Learning from Fukushima & Building Green Temple Communities," a study tour organized this past April by the Japan Network of Engaged Buddhists, a nonprofit organization...
Last month, I visited Ninh Thuan province, the planned site of a nuclear power plant in Vietnam.
"We now live in a time when we no longer know the location of Po Ryad."
The holy place of the deity is the planned site for the No. 1 Ninh Thuan nuclear power plant that Russia will build. [read more]

REPORT: PLASTIC POLLUTION IN THE OCEAN IS REACHING CRISIS LEVELS

01.10.2015 (Time) - There are 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic trash in the world’s oceans, and each year, 8 million tons of plastic are added to the count. According to a new report by the Ocean Conservancy, in partnership with the McKinsey Center for Business and Environment, by 2025, the ocean could contain one ton of plastic for every three tons of finfish.
The new report calls for a focus on improving waste management systems in a handful of developing countries that are most responsible for the plastic leakage into the ocean. China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam contribute more than half of the oceans’ plastic since their waste infrastructure hasn’t kept up with rapid industrialization. “We can concentrate on the places where the plastic is hitting the ocean,” Merkl says. “Five countries would solve half the problem.” [read more]

VIETNAM: PLUS DE 700KG DE CORNES DE RHINOCÉROS ET DE DÉFENSES D'ÉLÉPHANTS SAISIS

14.08.2015 (Charente Libre) -  Plus de 700 kg de cornes de rhinocéros et de défenses d'éléphants en provenance du Mozambique et arrivés par bateau dans le centre du Vietnam ont été saisi par la police, selon la presse officielle vendredi.
La cargaison a été découverte dans deux conteneurs d'un navire transportant des pierres arrivé jeudi dans un port de la ville de Danang (centre), a précisé le quotidien Tuoi Tre.
"593 kilos de défenses d'éléphant et 142 kilos de cornes de rhinocéros ont été confisqués", a indiqué le journal, ajoutant que le navire avait transité par la Malaisie et que sa destination finale était le port de Hai Phong (nord du Vietnam). [en savoir plus]

VIETNAM - EINE TONNE ELFENBEIN UND NASHORN-HÖRNER BESCHLAGNAHMT
14.08.2015 (Kleine Zeitung) - Der Zoll hat in Vietnam fast eine Tonne Elfenbein und Nashorn-Hörner beschlagnahmt. Die illegale Fracht kam aus Mosambik in Afrika, berichtete der Direktor der Zollbehörde am Hafen von Danang in Zentralvietnam am Freitag. Die Ladung der beiden Container war als "Marmor" deklariert.
Der Zoll wurde misstrauisch, weil der Wert nur mit ein paar Tausend Dollar angegeben war. Auf dem Schwarzmarkt hätte die Ladung nach Schätzungen 4,5 Millionen Euro eingebracht. [Weiterlesen]

JAPAN RECOMMENDS NEW REACTOR FOR VIETNAM
02.08.2015 (Nikkei Asian Review) - TOKYO -- The Japanese government is recommending that Vietnam buy a new type of pressurized water reactor developed by Atmea, a Japanese-French joint venture, sources told The Nikkei.
Industry observers were paying close attention to which reactor the Japanese government would choose from among three nuclear plant developers -- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Toshiba and Hitachi.
Japan hopes to export two reactors to the energy-hungry Southeast Asian nation. The two-reactor plant would cost 1 trillion yen ($8 billion). [read more]

FLOODED VIETNAM COAL MINES LEAKING TOXIC SLURRY INTO WORLD HERITAGE-LISTED HA LONG BAY: ENVIRONMENTALISTS
01.08.2015 (ABC News) - Heavy rainfall in northern Vietnam has killed at least 17 people and inundated major coal mines, causing concern among environmentalists about the contamination of the nation's top tourist attraction and World Heritage-listed Ha Long Bay.
A week of persistent rain in Quang Ninh province has displaced thousands of people as houses and roads deluged by floodwater runoff from 16 open pit coal mines and three coal-fired power plants escaped inadequate holding ponds.
In a statement, international clean water resources environmental group Waterkeeper Alliance said the runoff was filled with a potentially hazardous toxic slurry including heavy metals arsenic, boron, barium, cadmium, chromium, lead, manganese, selenium and thallium. [read more]

DEADLY RAINS DELUGE VIETNAM MINES, SPARK CONTAMINATION FEARS
31.07.2015 By Reuters (Daily Mail) - HANOI - Heavy rainfall in northern Vietnam has killed 17 people and inundated major coal mines, causing concern among environmentalists about contamination of local communities and the waters of a top tourist attraction, Halong Bay.
Six days of rain in Quang Ninh province have displaced thousands of people, with houses and roads deluged by floodwater that environmental groups said is filled with potentially hazardous coal dust.
The region is also a major source of coal, thousands of tonnes of which were swept away in the floods, according to the country's top mining firm, state-owned Vietnam National Coal and Mineral Industries Corporation (Vinacomin). [read more]

COUNTLESS DEATHS IN THE ‘CANCER VILLAGES’ AROUND HO CHI MINH CITY
29.07.2015 by Thanh Thuy (AsiaNews) - Ho Chi Minh City – Some 40 “cancer” villages dot the landscape around Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s economic capital. The land, air and water in these sites are highly polluted as a result of the indiscriminate use of chemicals in farming as well. One of the consequence is that 150,000 new cancer cases are recorded each year, and about 70,000 deaths.
According to Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development data, tens of thousands of companies and enterprises (some from China and Taiwan) use chemicals near these villages, turning them into landfills for recycling lead, mercury , timber, iron, paper, plastics, fertilisers and textile dyes. [read more]

POLLUTION AU VIETNAM – VERS UNE PRISE DE CONSCIENCE DU PROBLÈME ?
27.07.2015 Marielle Capelle (Lepetitjournal) - Une touriste occidentale accroupie sur une plage du nord du Vietnam pour ramasser des déchets… Une autre, l’eau à la taille, un sac plastique à la main, en train de collecter des cannettes de bière et des sacs plastiques flottants dans la mer… Loin des clichés habituels du Vietnam, ces photos révèlent une triste réalité : la plupart des sites touristiques sont en train de devenir de véritables poubelles…
Une touriste occidentale accroupie sur une plage du nord du Vietnam pour ramasser des déchets… Une autre, l’eau à la taille, un sac plastique à la main, en train de collecter des cannettes de bière et des sacs plastiques flottants dans la mer… Loin des clichés habituels du Vietnam, ces photos révèlent une triste réalité : la plupart des sites touristiques sont en train de devenir de véritables poubelles… [en savoir plus]

FORMALDEHYDE, ANYONE? MORE CONTAMINATION IN FISH FROM VIETNAM/CHINA
24.07.2015 Hembree Brandon (DeltaFarmPress.com) - A report by NBC-TV Charlotte noted that formaldehyde-laced Vietnamese swai (a catfish-like species also known as pangasius, basa and tra) was found in three North Carolina stores.  Formaldehyde-tainted Chinese tilapia was also found in three stores.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration was alerted and conducted blind testing of fish found in supermarkets nationwide and found similar results.  The FDA, which is responsible for imported seafood safety in the U.S., does not routinely test for formaldehyde, so there's no limit on how much of the toxic chemical can be added to fish, NBC Charlotte reported. [read more]

LOCATION OF VIETNAM'S NUCLEAR POWER PROJECT EXTENDED
16.07.2015 (individual.com) - Construction on Ninh Thuan 1 and 2 nuclear power plants, the first of the kind in Vietnam, will be extended southwest as required in new changes to their master plan approved by the Ministry of Industry and Trade, local media reported Friday.
The Ninh Thuan 1 power plant in Vinh Truong village, in the south central coast region, will sprawl over 443.11 hectares of land and 440.57 hectares at sea. The Ninh Thuan 2 power plant in Thai An village will spread 380.91 hectares of land and 337.63 hectares at sea, according to online newspaper Vietnamnet.
Each of the plants will be equipped with four 1,000-1,200 megawatt turbines installed over two phases. The first turbine of Ninh Thuan 1 plant is expected to be connected to the national grid by 2020.
Local authorities are responsible for resident resettlement to pave the way for the construction, which has been delayed a number of times following safety lessons learned from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear incident in Japan, with an initial focus on infrastructure, such as roads and water and electricity supply, Vietnam News Agency reported. [read more]

SORGEN UM STRAHLENBELASTUNG: JAPAN STREITET UM EINFUHRVERBOTE FÜR LEBENSMITTEL
22.06.2015, von Patrick Welter, Tokio (FAZ) - Fünf Jahre nach Fukushima bemüht die Regierung in Tokio sich um Normalität für die japanischen Lebensmittelexporte. Das führt zu Reibereien vor allem mit den Nachbarn.
Ein halbes Jahrzehnt nach dem Reaktorunfall in Fukushima verschrecken Lebensmittel aus Japan immer noch ausländische Verbraucher und Regierungen, die sich um eine mögliche Strahlenbelastung sorgen. Japan wirbt mit strengen Kontrollen und der Zusicherung, dass nur in Ausnahmefällen Lebensmittel Radioaktivität über den Grenzwerten aufwiesen. Das Land streitet vor allem mit seinen Nachbarn darum, Importverbote aufzuheben oder zu lockern. Gerade hat Japan dazu Gespräche mit China, einem der wichtigsten Handelspartner, begonnen. China verbietet die Einfuhr von Lebensmitteln aus 10 der 47 japanischen Präfekturen.
Nach dem Reaktorunfall, bei dem es in drei Reaktoren zur Kernschmelze kam, verboten zeitweise rund 50 Staaten die Einfuhr von Lebensmitteln aus Japan. Dreizehn Länder, darunter Kanada und Mexiko, aber auch Malaysia, Vietnam und Australien, haben die Restriktionen mittlerweile aufgehoben. [Weiterlesen]

DEATH OF THE MEKONG, RIVER OF BUDDHISM
Mr. Tran is the founder of AMI Environmental, a private consulting firm in Nevada, USA. He has over 35 years of experience in computer modeling, air quality and wind energy studies. He has served as consultant to US government agencies, industrial companies and environmental organizations. Since 2001, he has founded and operated the website vnbaolut.com that provides daily weather and tropical storm forecasts for Bangladesh, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. He also developed software to translate Mahayana texts from Chinese to English and Vietnamese. He received his degrees in Engineering from the University of California.
Death of the Mekong
16.06.2015 Khanh T. Tran (UNDV) - From its origin in the high plateau of Tibet, the Mekong River is 4500 km long and the 12th longest river in the world, flowing through six countries that include China, Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. The Mekong River is the lifeline to more than 65 million inhabitants, mainly in downstream countries of Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. The majority of these inhabitants are Buddhists and all three major Buddhist traditions are practiced: Theravāda in Myanmar, Thailand, Laos and Cambodia; Mahayana in China and Vietnam; and Vajrayana in Tibet. Hence, the Mekong is called the “River of Buddhism”. Their daily life is constantly threatened by floods, deforestation, pollution as well as ill-planned development projects. The biggest threat to their livelihood is the gigantic hydroelectric dams built or planned in Yunnan Province and the smaller dams in Laos and on the Lower Mekong.
In the last twenty years, there has been an active program to build several dams for hydroelectric power on the Mekong River. (Richard Cronin, 2010; Scott Pearse-Smith, 2012). As of 2014, there are 26 dams on the mainstream, 14 on the Lancang River (the name) of Upper Mekong in China in the Yunnan Province of China in the Yunnan Province of China and 12 on the Lower Mekong. [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

SCHWIMMENDE SOLARKRAFTWERK
27.05.2015 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - In einem Teich in der Stadt Kasai, Präfektur Hyogo, ist die weltweit grösste, schwimmende Solaranlage in Betrieb genommen worden. Die dort angelegeten 9000 Panele liefern jährlich 2,3 Megawattstunden Solarstrom. Sie versorgen damit 820 Haushalte mit Strom. Gebaut hat diese schwimmende Anlage der japanische Konzern Kyocera.
Das System hat den Vorteil, dass das Wasser als natürliches Kühlsystem für die Solarpanele dient und damit eine stabilere Energieproduktion ermöglicht. Der auf dem Teich produzierte Strom fliesst künftig ins Netz von Kansai Electric Power. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM FACES UPHILL BATTLE TO HARNESS RENEWABLE ENERGY
15.05.2015 Lien Hoang (VOA) - HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM— With sunshine throughout the year and exposure to ocean winds, Vietnam would seem like an obvious candidate for renewable energy projects. Yet it has just three big wind farms and no significant solar investment, putting it far behind neighboring Indonesia, Thailand and others in Asia.
The reason, critics say, is obvious: price controls. Vietnam keeps a ceiling on electricity prices — on average, about 7 cents per kilowatt hour. Investors say they need a feed-in tariff that’s at least twice as much so they can recover the cost of generating clean energy. [read more]

VIETNAM SEES INCREASED INCIDENCES OF MALARIA
15.05.2015 (Bernama) -- HANOI - Malaria hospitalisations are on the rise in Vietnam, particularly in the south, revealed the General Department of Preventative Medicine under the Ministry of Health on Thursday, Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported.
There are four major types of the virus in Vietnam and one can suffer from more than one type simultaneously, the department stated.
Immigration, poor sanitation and the habit of storing water in tanks across the country, especially rural areas, has long created favourable conditions for malaria, medical establishments said. [read more]

STATEMENT FROM "FOR A GREEN HANOI" GROUP ON THE ATTACK AGAINST NGUYEN CHI TUYEN
13.05.2015 (Dân Làm Báo) - At 7:30 a.m. May 11, 2015, Nguyen Chi Tuyen (Facebooker Anh Chi), a member of "For a Green Hanoi," was suddenly attacked by five masked men on Ngoc Thuy Street, Long Bien district, Hanoi, after taking his child to school.
Those five men used iron tubes to hit him brutally and dangerously slammed on his head causing severe injuries. Learning the attack, some members of the group called in an ambulance to rush him to a hospital. Doctors performed a 6 cm long suture on his head and he is recently discharged.
"For a Green Hanoi" group announces the statement as follows:
- We are not afraid and will not back down in the fight for common interests such as protecting the environment and trees in Hanoi and promoting government transparency and accountability. [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

CHINA TACKLES POLLUTION, BUT HAS LONG WAY TO GO ON LABOR
04.05.2015 Matthew Wheeland (The Guardian) - China takes on pollution in a big way, with a strengthened federal environmental protection law. But are workers rights problems spreading as companies chase ever-lower costs.
Air pollution is easily China’s best-recognized environmental challenge. There’s no denying the devastating, nearly incomprehensible levels of smog in Beijing, Shenyang, Shanghai and many other Chinese cities – the pollution is so bad that you can even see it from space.
But pollution is only the beginning of China’s problems resulting from the country’s headlong race into economic development. Take your pick: water pollution, challenges to political and religious freedom, soil pollution, human rights problems, desertification, cancer villages and more. China has only recently begun to take stock of the true costs of its advance into economic powerdom.
... Among the markets emerging for cheap manufacturing labor are Cambodia, Indonesia, Vietnam and even Myanmar. Can these new host countries learn lessons from China’s evolution and chart a better course to sustainable development? [read more]

THE CHAM AND THE NUCLEAR POWER PROJECT
29/04/2015 Inrasara, translated from vietnamese by Thục Quyên & Melissa Ryzek (Save VietNam's Nature) - 1. Pangdurangga (nowadays includes Ninh Thuan and Binh Thuan Province ) is a geographic region - the southernmost of --- four historic areas in the ancient kingdom of Champa. During the tumultuous history of the kingdom, this area has always had to suffer the most, in all aspects.
Being far away from the major cultural center Amaravati during Champa's flourishing time, Pangdurangga had not been much favored. So many times invaded by the army Khmer, the people of Pangdurangga always had to face the enemy alone, and then, when the kingdom weakened, Pangdurangga had to take a stand for the whole nation to outlast, in accordance with the character of Pangdurangga. Geographic location and life circumstances forced the people to equip themselves with an independent spirit. This spirit of independence and resistance, forged generation after  generation, gave rise to its extreme endurance, some could even say stubbornness. ...
Cham Culture Gallery Inrahani is my newly erected center in 2010 in the village of Caklaing, considered as a "humble grasp to hold Cham back to the land." Furthermore, I also completed the novel Tcherfunith in April 2012. ...
On August 23, 2013, driven by the one way propaganda campaign, Mr Bao van Tro,  ethnic Cham, confirmed the "absolute safety" of the nuclear power. Another person, Mr Ngo khac Can, a Kinh and president of  the Local Senior Association of Thai An, back from his trip to visit a Japan Nuclear power plant, "explained" that only "atom" would explode but "nuclear power" is quite safe. Making the Chams lose entire trust in the matter. [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

ANTI-NUCLEAR ACTIVISTS SOLDIER ON IN NUCLEAR ENERGY POWERHOUSE FRANCE
28.04.2015 Michiko Yoshii (The Asahi Shimbun) - France, smaller than either the United States or China, has solidly embraced nuclear power. Its 58 nuclear reactors deliver 75 percent of the country's electricity. I visited France in March, my first trip there in two and a half years.
Arriving in Saint-Quentin, a small rural town of only 60,000 people about 150 kilometers northeast of Paris, the opening ceremony for a photo exhibition on the Fukushima nuclear crisis was under way. It was the fourth anniversary of the disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in Japan.
On display was a work by Tibo Dhermy, a French photographer who began making annual trips to Fukushima soon after the triple meltdown triggered by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster.
Around 100 prominent local citizens had gathered to hear Dhermy deliver a passionate speech in the exhibition hall.
Nguyen Khac Nhan, screamed out, "Everyone who promotes nuclear energy, they're all big liars!"
Nhan's opposition to nuclear power goes beyond mere casual interest.
Nhan replied: "The nuclear power projects will most certainly be stopped. Five reactors have melted down in the first 50 years of nuclear power's use in the world. Three Mile Island had one, Chernobyl had one, and Fukushima had three. That's one reactor every decade. Unfortunately there will be another accident at a reactor within the next decade. We don't know if it'll be in France, China, Japan, or some other country. And when it happens, I think they'll put a stop to the Vietnamese projects. I don't intend to die until I've seen those projects killed." [read more]

GERICHT STELLT SICH GEGEN AKW
16.04.2015 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) -  Eigentlich war schon alles klar. Die Reaktoren 3 und 4 im AKW Takahama in der Präfektur Fukui hatten bereits das OK fürs Wiederhochfahren durch die Nukleare Regulierungsbehörde (NRA) erhalten. Noch gab es einige Details zu klären, doch Betreiber Kansai Electric Power hatte die Hoffnung bis im Herbst mit Takahama wieder ans Netz zu gehen.
Nun hat aber das Bezirksgericht von Fukui diesem Plan einen Strich durch diese Rechnung gemacht, wie die Tokyo Shimbun berichtet. Richter Hideaki Higuchi hat in erster Instanz ein Wiederhochfahren der Reaktoren in Takahama untersagt. Der Betreiber habe keine glaubwürdigen Beweise bezüglich Fragen des Erdbebenrisikos liefern können.
Eine Klägergruppe hatte argumentiert, dass ein unerwartetes Erdbeben in der Region einen schweren Unfall in Takahama auslösen könnte. Kansai Electric entgegnete, dass die Sicherheitsmassnahmen ausreichen würden. Das Gericht hält diese Erklärungen jedoch nicht für glaubwürdig. [Weiterlesen]

CRUCIAL NUCLEAR DEBATE IN S. KOREA NONEXISTENT
15.04.2015 By Jin Ho Jeon (Asia Sentinel) - The Fukushima nuclear accident, precipitated by the March 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, has had a dramatic effect globally, shattering the myth that it is the safest and cheapest source of energy. Germany, Belgium and Switzerland have decided to phase out nuclear power and France, the most nuclear-reliant country in the world, said it would reduce its dependence and increase the use of renewables.
South Korea, since the launch of its first commercial nuclear power plant in 1978, now operates 23 nuclear power plants – 24, if the recently expanded Wolseong 1 is counted – with nuclear energy accounting for around 27 percent of gross energy generation.
Nevertheless, South Korea also faces serious issues. First among them is the question of energy diversification: should it increase the proportion of nuclear energy within its energy supply? Shale gas has recently emerged as a new source of energy, and natural gas supply is also on the rise. Many countries are pursuing a new energy mix which curtails their dependency on nuclear energy while enlarging renewable energy’s proportion in power generation. [read more]

DOSE MIT RADIOAKTIVEM MATERIAL IN VIETNAM VERSCHWUNDEN
08.04.2015 (Die Welt) - Kobalt-60 könnte in die Umwelt gelangen. In Vietnam haben die Behörden eine großangelegte Suche nach einem aus einem Stahlwerk verschwundenen Bleibehälter mit radioaktivem Material eingeleitet. Die 45 Kilogramm schwere und 45 Zentimeter lange Box enthalte Kobalt-60, ein für die Umwelt und die Gesundheit schädliches radioaktives Isotop, das im Stahlwerk Pomina im Süden des Landes für Messungen eingesetzt worden sei, erklärte die Wissenschafts- und Technologiebehörde der Provinz Ba Ria-Vung Tau. "Wir wissen nicht, wann und wie der Behälter verschwand", sagte ein Behördenvertreter der Nachrichtenagentur AFP. [Weiterlesen] - [tiếng Việt]

VIETNAM HUNTS FOR MISSING BOX OF RADIOACTIVE MATERIAL
08.04.2015 (Business Recorder) - HANOI: Vietnamese authorities are searching for a lead box containing hazardous radioactive material which has gone missing from a steel factory, an official said on Wednesday.
"(We) do not know how and when the container went missing," Do Vu Khoa, an official with the Department of Science and Technology in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, told AFP. "We are searching for the radiation box," he added.
The silver-white container weighs 45 kilograms (100 pounds) and is some 1.5 feet long (45 centimetres) and six inches wide, the department said in a statement.
"It contains Co-60 which was used for liquid measurement. It poses a potential danger to the environment and people's health," the statement said. [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

UNE CARGAISON DE MATIÈRE RADIOACTIVE PERDUE
08.04.2015 (Le Figaro) - Une cargaison de matière radioactive a disparu d'une aciérie au Vietnam, suscitant une opération de recherches d'envergure ce jour. Cette boîte métallique de 45 kg et de 45 cm de long contient du cobalt-60, un isotope radioactif utilisé dans l'industrie et dangereux pour l'homme et l'environnement.
C'est dans l'aciérie de Pomina, au sud du pays, que la cargaison a disparu. "On ne sait pas comment ni quand elle a disparu", a déclaré Do Vu Khoa, du département des Sciences de la province de Ba Ria-Vung Tau. "Nous la recherchons toujours", a-t-il ajouté. Les médias d'Etat indiquent que cette disparition remonte à trois mois. [en savoir plus] - [tiếng Việt]

CLIMATE CHANGE MOST SIGNIFICANT LONG-TERM CROSS-BORDER RISK
02.04.2015 Written by Deborah Ritchie (CIR) - Resilience will be particularly important for countries most exposed to the impacts of climate change, which will result in more frequent and severe weather events. This is according to the latest research from Verisk Maplecroft, which flags climate change as the most important cross-border risk affecting the long-term outlook for global investment. More than 50% of countries are categorised as ‘extreme’ or ‘high risk’ in the GRRA’s Climate Change Exposure Index, with the key Asian economies of Bangladesh, Hong Kong, Japan, Philippines, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and India among the highest risk.
However, the economies of Japan and Hong Kong are rated ‘low risk’ and among the best performing in the GRRA’s Global Risks Resilience Index, ranking 184th and 191st respectively. Conversely, Verisk Maplecroft identifies Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, the Philippines and Vietnam as ‘high risk’ countries where vulnerabilities to a global risk event should be taken into account in business continuity planning. [read more]

IN VIETNAM, RAMPANT WILDLIFE SMUGGLING PROMPTS LITTLE CONCERN
30.03.2015 By RACHEL NUWER (The New York Times) - In the previous two weeks, Mr. Luc had caught nine Southeast Asian box turtles and Malayan snail-eating turtles, five elephant trunk snakes, a handful of water birds and two rare Himalayan griffon vultures. For safekeeping, Mr. Luc stashed the vultures in his brother’s house, leaving them tethered in the bedroom until he can figure out what to do with them.
In the past, Mr. Luc’s hunting trips often yielded wildlife bonanzas, including prized pangolins. Also known as scaly anteaters, they are among the most trafficked mammals in the world. Mr. Luc works with traders willing to buy live pangolins for $60 a pound.
Although he caught just two pangolins last year, that price makes it well worth the effort to keep seeking them out. He knows, however, that this lucrative resource is finite. [read more]

VOLLER PESTIZIDE: KUMQUAT-FRÜCHTE AUS VIETNAM
27.03.2015 (taz) Hanoi - Auf den Straßen von Hanoi fahren Motorräder beladen mit Kumquat-Bäumen. Die Früchte gelten in Vietnam traditionell als Symbol für Reichtum und mit Zucker kandiert als Delikatesse. Aber in diesem Jahr verzichten viele auf den Verzehr.
Auf den Straßen von Hanoi fahren Motorräder beladen mit Kumquat-Bäumchen. Die Früchte gelten in Vietnam traditionell als Symbol für Reichtum und mit Zucker kandiert als Delikatesse. Aber in diesem Jahr verzichten viele auf den Verzehr von Kumquats, sie befürchten gesundheitliche Schäden wegen der übermäßigen Verwendung von Pestiziden. O-Ton Nguyen Thi Hang, baut Kumquat-Früchte an:"Wir können diese Kumquats essen, aber wir müssen mindestens zwei Wochen warten und sie gründlich waschen, damit die Chemikalien von den Früchten abgehen. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM CAPITAL U-TURNS ON TREE FELLING AFTER PUBLIC OUTCRY
20/03/2015 (Townhall) - HANOI (Reuters) - Political leaders of Vietnam's capital halted the felling of thousands of Hanoi's trees on Friday after the plan sparked public outrage and fears it would damage the image of one of the world's most picturesque cities.
Social media criticism went into overdrive this week after authorities started cutting down some 500 of the 6,700 trees it considered dangerous in the leafy metropolis often dubbed the "Paris of Asia".
Though discussion of politics remains strictly taboo and can sometimes result in arrests and jail, many Vietnamese speak up about social and environmental issues [read more]

VIETNAM ERLAUBT GENTECHNIK-ANBAU
19/03/2015 (Informationsdienst Gentechnik) - In Vietnam könnte demnächst gentechnisch veränderter Mais angebaut werden. Die insektengift-produzierende und Spritzmittel-resistente Variante Bt11 x GA21 habe vom Umweltministerium grünes Licht bekommen, meldet der Herstellerkonzern Syngenta.
Erst letzten Herbst hatte die Regierung die Einfuhr von vier Gentechnik-Maislinien von Syngenta und Monsanto als Lebens- und Futtermittel genehmigt.
2006 hatte Vietnam zusammen mit Thailand ein Moratorium für den Anbau von gentechnisch verändertem Reis verhängt. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM REPORTS OUTBREAK OF H5N6 BIRD FLU VIRUS - OIE
19/03/2015 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - PARIS - Vietnam reported an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N6 bird flu virus in a village in the northern province of Thanh Hoa, the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Thursday.
Over 350 birds were found infected by the virus in a village in Tinh Gia district last week [read more]

IMPRESSIONEN DER ANTI-ATOM-DEMO DÜSSELDORF
14.03.2015 (energiezukunft) - Am 11. März war der 4. Jahrestag des Atomreaktor-Gaus von Fukushima. Bundesweit fanden unzählige Mahnwachen statt – und in Düsseldorf wurde zum Protest aufgerufen
Genau vier Jahre ist es her, dass die Reaktoren des Atomkraftwerks in Fukushima aufgrund eines schweren Erdbebens stark beschädigt wurden. [Weiterlesen]

TAIWAN STAGES MASS ANTI-NUCLEAR RALLY
14.03.2015 by Staff Writers (Nuclear Power Daily) - Taipei (AFP) -  Thousands of people took to the streets in Taiwan on Saturday to call for the island to scrap its use of nuclear energy and to voice opposition to controversial plans to ship nuclear waste abroad, organisers said.
Protesters in central Taipei waved placards and dressed in T-shirts emblazoned with slogans including "Goodbye to nuclear energy" and "We don't need nuclear power", just days after Japan marked the fourth anniversary of an undersea earthquake which triggered a massive tsunami and nuclear disaster.
Taiwan's government has faced growing public pressure over its unpopular nuclear energy facilities. [read more]

GEGEN DAS VERGESSEN
11.03.2015 Von Masashi Kato (Asienspiegel) - Am 8. März haben sich tausende Menschen vor dem Parlamentsgebäude in Tokio versammelt, um gegen die Atompolitik der Regierung zu protestieren. Der Zeitpunkt wurde bewusst einige Tage vor dem heutigen, vierten Jahrestag der Erdbeben-, Tsunami- und AKW-Katastrophe am 11. März 2011 gewählt.
Gegen das Vergessen 11.03.2015
Bild aus Asienspiegel: Die Anti-AKW-Demo am 8. März 2015 vor dem Parlament in Tokio. (Foto: Masashi Kato)
«Ich nehme seit vier Jahren an diesen Anti-AKW-Protestkundgebungen teil», erklärte die 78-jährige Setsuko Suhara. «Die Menschen in Japan möchten in Frieden leben, ohne ständig einer Gefahr ausgesetzt zu sein. Wie wir nun alle wissen, bergen die Atomkraftwerke Probleme.»
Ein Kritikpunkt der Demonstranten ist, dass Premierminister Shinzo Abe auf den Neustart der Kernkraftwerke drängt, ohne das Problem des nuklearen Abfalls bislang gelöst zu haben. Wie in vielen Industrienationen fehlt es Japan noch immer an einem definitiven Standort für ein Atommüllendlage [Weiterlesen]

FUKUSHIMA-KATASTROPHE: VIER JAHRE NACH DEM GAU
10.03.2015 (Osnabrücker Zeitung) - Tokio. Am 11. März jährt sich die Reaktorkatastrophe von Fukushima zum vierten Mal. Zwar sind die Aufräumarbeiten ein gutes Stück vorangekommen, doch der geschmolzene Brennstoff konnte noch immer nicht lokalisiert werden. Der Wiederaufbau evakuierter Gebiete kommt nicht voran.
Der 49-jährige Norio Kimura schimpft. „Jetzt wird auch noch der Müll bei uns abgeladen.“ Seine Frau und seine Tochter hat Kimura bei der Tsunamikatastrophe verloren. Jetzt fürchtet er, dass er auch noch seine Heimat unweit des havarierten Kraftwerks von Fukushima für immer verliert.
Pünktlich zum vierten Jahrestag sollen die ersten Lastkraftwagen mit radioaktiv belastetem Müll in dem geplanten Zwischenlager eintreffen. Insgesamt sollen hier 30 Millionen Tonnen verstrahlte Erde, die bei der Dekontaminierung der Präfektur abgetragen werden, 30 Jahre lang zwischengelagert werden. Vor wenigen Wochen haben die Bürgermeister der beiden wegen extrem hoher Strahlung noch immer vollständig evakuierten Gemeinden den Bau des Lagers abgenickt. Noch haben Kimura und die gut 2300 anderen Landbesitzer ihre Grundstücke nicht offiziell zur Verfügung gestellt. Doch die Bauarbeiten haben trotzdem bereits begonnen. Eine echte Alternative für das Zwischenlager gibt es nicht. [Weiterlesen]

4. JAHRESTAG VON FUKUSHIMA - GRÜNE: ENERGIEWENDE STATT ATOMKRAFT
10.03.2015 (BUP) Die Landtagsfraktion von BÜNDNIS 90/DIE GRÜNEN nimmt den vierten Jahrestag der Atomkatastrophe von Fukushima zum Anlass, an die Opfer und Betroffenen zu gedenken. „Nach Tschernobyl war Fukushima das zweite große Atomunglück, das Menschen getötet und eine ganze Region unbewohnbar gemacht hat. Fukushima hat auf schlimme Art und Weise noch einmal vor Augen geführt, dass die Atomkraft nicht gänzlich von Menschen beherrschbar ist, vom noch Jahrtausende radioaktiven Atommüll ist da noch gar nicht die Rede“, erklärt Angela Dorn, energiepolitische Sprecherin der GRÜNEN.  [Weiterlesen]

TAUSENDE ZUSÄTZLICHE KREBSERKRANKUNGEN ZU BEFÜRCHTEN
03.03.2015 (IPPNW) - Vier Jahre nach der Atomkatastrophe von Fukushima beginnen sich die gesundheitlichen Folgen für die japanische Bevölkerung abzuzeichnen. Aus den Zahlen des Wissenschaftlichen Ausschusses der Vereinten Nationen zur Untersuchung der Auswirkungen der atomaren Strahlung (UNSCEAR) geht hervor, dass in Japan aufgrund der radioaktiven Verseuchung bis zu 16.000 zusätzliche Krebserkrankungen und bis zu 9.000 zusätzliche Krebstodesfälle zu erwarten sind. Die Ärzteorganisation IPPNW geht davon aus, dass die tatsächlichen Zahlen weitaus höher liegen dürften, da die im UNSCEAR-Bericht aufgeführten Emissionswerte ausschließlich auf Angaben der japanischen Atomenergiebehörde beruhen und deutlich höhere Angaben unabhängiger Institute unberücksichtigt lassen.  [Weiterlesen]

ILLUMINATIONS BATHE HO CHI MINH IN LIGHT, BUT NUCLEAR PROJECT LOOMS ON HORIZON
Michiko Yoshii
02.03.2015 Michiko Yoshii (The Asahi Shimbun) - For Christmas and New Year's, I visited Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, where I lived for 12 years until 2005. It was my first time in a decade in the city during the holiday season...
I asked Duc, a 38-year-old worker who handles cargo at a factory, if he was aware of the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in March 2011.
"I recall hearing the name," he replied. "But I don't know what it is."
He was not the only person I met who was unfamiliar with the Fukushima incident. Mai, a 30-year-old sewing plant worker, said, "I saw the earthquake and tsunami on TV, but I don't know about Fukushima."
When I told her about the planned nuclear facility, she said: "Wow, they're going to build a nuclear power plant in Thai An? That's the first I've heard of it. I only watch dramas on TV." She added: "That village is close to a water supply, so radioactive contamination would be terrible. We have to do something." [read more]

STUDIE : OZEANE VERSINKEN IM MÜLL
13.02.2015 (MDR) - Allein im Jahr 2010 sind rund acht Millionen Tonnen Plastikmüll in die Ozeane gelangt. Das geht aus einer Studie hervor, die jetzt im US-Fachmagazin "Science" veröffentlicht wurde. Danach sind demnach China, Indonesien, die Philippinen, Vietnam und Sri Lanka die Länder, die am meisten Müll im Meer entsorgen. Die USA liegen demnach auf Platz 20 und sind das einzige Industrieland in den Top 20.
Einer der Forscher sprach von einer gewaltigen Menge. Mit ihr ließe sich eine Fläche, die 34 Mal so groß sei wie der New Yorker Stadtteil Manhattan, knöcheltief mit Müll bedecken. "Es kann noch schlimmer werden", warnte eine andere beteiligte Forscherin. Entwickle sich die Weltbevölkerung, der Plastikverbrauch und die Müllmenge weiter wie bisher, werde sich die Menge in den kommenden zehn Jahren verdoppeln.
Die Forscher hatten ein Modell entwickelt, das zeigt, wie viel Müll pro Land entsteht. Wie viel Plastikmüll bereits in den Ozeanen schwimmt, das ist aus anderen Studien bekannt. Danach treiben allein 269.000 Tonnen Plastikmüll an der Wasseroberfläche – darunter auch winzige Teilchen, die über Tiere wieder in die Nahrungskette gelangen können. [Weiterlesen]

AKW BRUNSBÜTTEL: BERGUNG LÖCHRIGER ATOMMÜLLFÄSSER KANN BEGINNEN

09.02.2015 (Spiegel Online) - Kiel - Hunderte beschädigte Atommüllfässer will der Energiekonzern Vattenfall mit Spezialgreifern aus dem Kernkraftwerk Brunsbüttel holen. Die Aufsichtsbehörde hat dem Plan jetzt zugestimmt. Doch die Bergung wird Jahre dauern. Es soll das Ende eines "unrühmlichen Kapitels der Atomgeschichte" sein, sagte Schleswig-Holsteins Energiewendeminister Robert Habeck (Grüne) am Montag: Die schleswig-holsteinische Atomaufsicht hat die Pläne des Energiekonzerns Vattenfall zur Bergung teils beschädigter Atommüllfässer aus dem AKW Brunsbüttel gebilligt. Die Bergung soll im dritten Quartal 2015 beginnen und drei Jahre dauern.
Laut dem Konzept sollen die Fässer aus den geöffneten Kavernen des AKW gehoben werden. [Weiterlesen]

WILDEREI GEFÄHRDET STABILITÄT VON STAATEN
05.02.2015 (Die Zeit) -  Die Millionen-Umsätze von Wilderei verstärkten die Korruption in afrikanischen Ländern und destabilisiere sie, warnt der Chef der Frankfurter Zoologischen Gesellschaft. Ein großes Nasenhorn erziele auf dem Schwarzmarkt in Vietnam ungefähr 150.000 Euro. Bei Elfenbein liegen wir bei ungefähr 10.000 Euro pro Kilo. Nasenhorn und Elfenbein von den Stoßzähnen der Elefanten werde mit "Gold und Silber aufgewogen". [Weiterlesen]

DER VERLASSENE BAHNHOF
29.01.2015 Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Das Städtchen Tomioka befindet sich an der Küste der Präfektur Fukushima gerade mal 10 Kilometer vom havarierten AKW entfernt. Etwas weiter südlich, noch auf dem Gebiet von Tomioka, liegt das ebenfalls stillgelegte AKW Fukushima Nummer 2.
Am 11. März 2011 evakuierten die Behörden alle 16’000 Einwohner von Tomioka. Eine Mehrheit liess sich in der nahe gelegene Grossstadt Koriyama nieder. Das Städtchen wurde zur Sperrzone.
Die laufenden Dekontaminierungsarbeiten werden jedoch noch sehr viel Zeit in Anspruch nehmen, wie eine aktuelle Karte vom Dezember 2014 zeigt. Erst 11,4 Prozent der verseuchten Erde in den Wohngebiete konnte bislang abgetragen werden [Weiterlesen]

TIERSCHÜTZER PRANGERN ZUSTÄNDE AUF BÄRENFARMEN IN NORDVIETNAM AN
11.12.2014 (Blick) - Hanoi – Tierschützer schlagen wegen der Zustände auf sogenannten Bärenfarmen im Norden Vietnams Alarm. Die Zustände, unter denen die Tiere in der besonders bei Touristen beliebten Ha Long-Bucht gehalten würden, seien schockierend.
Mehr als die Hälfte der Bären seien ausgezehrt, vielen fehlten Gliedmassen und sie wiesen Wunden auf. «Es war schockierend», sagte der für Vietnam zuständige Direktor von Animals Asia, Tuan Bendixsen. [Weiterlesen]

ENVIRONMENTALISTS SKEPTICAL AHEAD OF LAOS MEETING ON HYDROPOWER DAM
09.12.2014 Ron Corben (VOA) - BANGKOK— The four-nation Mekong River Commission (MRC) this week holds public consultations on the development of a large hydropower dam in southern Laos.
The project is one of a series of planned dams in the Mekong River Basin that environmentalists say could harm an ecosystem critical for feeding millions of people in Southeast Asia. 
Environmentalists say construction of the Don Sahong dam on a vital cascading region of the Mekong River will directly impact fish migration, especially vital in dry season, and threaten the last remaining Irrawaddy dolphins in the river system.
Carl Thayer, a political scientist with the Australian-based University of New South Wales, says tensions between Vietnam and Laos are also expected to rise as Vientiane presses ahead with the project.
"It's going to test [Communist] party to party relations between Laos and Vietnam quite severely. [read more]

OVER 1,000 DEAD ENDANGERED TURTLES SEIZED
26.11.2014 (The Nation)  - HANOI (AFP): Vietnam’s environmental police have seized a record haul of over 1,000 endangered sea turtles which were being prepared for illegal export to China, an official said Tuesday. “The turtles were all dead,” Le Hong Thai, an official of the Ministry of Public Security’s environmental police department, told AFP.  “They were meant to be processed into handicrafts for export to China,” he added. The raids were made on Wednesday last week in the resort town of Nha Trang on Vietnam’s south-central coast. [read more]

1.000 BEDROHTE SCHILDKRÖTEN IN VIETNAM BESCHLAGNAHMT
25.11.2014 (nachrichten.at) - HANOI - Die vietnamesische Polizei hat die Kadaver von mehr als 1.000 bedrohten Meeresschildkröten beschlagnahmt. Die leblosen Körper der Tiere sollten illegal nach China exportiert werden.
Es war der bisher größte derartige Fund. "Alle Schildkröten waren tot", sagte Le Hong Thai, Sprecher der Abteilung für Umweltverbrechen im Ministerium für Öffentliche Sicherheit. "Sie sollten zu Handwerkskunst für den Export nach China verarbeitet werden", sagte Thai.
Die Kadaver wurden am vergangenen Mittwoch bei einer Razzia im Erholungsort Nha Trang im Süden Vietnams sichergestellt. [Weiterlesen]

VIETNAM’S CABLE CAR MANIA
19.11.2014 Written by Helen Clark (Asia Sentinel) - At least a couple of times a year, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism  is torn apart in the local press, along with the agency’s and often-terribly strange ideas for tourism promotion.  Most recently has been a cable car in a cave.
“Vietnam seems to have this deep insecurity that its natural beauty and scenic landscapes are not enough - they must be ‘improved’ with cable cars, casinos or loud karaoke,” Pamela McElwee, an assistant professor at Rutgers University, told local media.
The massive cave was found in 1991 by a local, Ho Khanh, and later explored by a group from the British Cave Research Association in 2009. It quickly made headlines and a National Geographic photo essay made it famous. The small-scale, light-footprint approach to allowing visitors to the cave was welcomed by some who are sick of the tourism industry’s rapid, reckless and often environmentally damaging expansion. [read more]

THE INDEPENDENT JOURNALISTS ASSOCIATION OF VIETNAM'S DECLARATION RE. THE PROTECTION OF THE NATURAL HERITAGE SITE OF SON DOONG
17.11.2014 (IJAVN) - The independent journalists of Vietnam urgently put out the call to forewarn against the impending plan to build cable car lines in Son Doong, thus causing severe damage to this natural heritage site.
Son Doong is a major cavern part of the Phong Nha-Ke Bang series of caverns. Located at 17°27’25.88” North and 106°17’15.36” East, it lies in the township of Son Trach, Bo Trach District, Quang Binh Province. Discovered by Mr. Ho Khanh, a local resident, it has been widely advertized by the Royal Caverns Society of Great Britain in 2009.
Son Doong is the largest natural cavern in the world, naturally formed some two to five million years ago. It is 150 meters broad, 200 meters high, and at least 5 kilometers long, served by an underground river of some 2.5 kilometers, and it has 70-meter tall stalagmites, with its own ecosystem different from that on the outside (these are data published by the Royal Caverns Society of Great Britain).
The Quang Binh Provincial People's Committee is the principal agent causing the damage done to the Son Doong natural heritage site. As the main agency responsible for the state management of the site, the authorities of Quang Binh Province have, in November 2014, agreed to let the Sun Group survey the site so as to study the building of cable car lines in the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park.
the Independent Journalists Association of Vietnam, a civil society in Vietnam, hereby raises its voice:
Request that the People's Committee of Quang Binh Province and the Government of Vietnam take actions "to protect the environment and to preserve this heritage site for future generations," which means that they must fully and objectively evaluate, then widely disseminate the information about this proposal to build cable cars in the area of Son Doong (which belongs to the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park). They should listen to the voice of the people, to the scientific experts, to environmental activists, to state-owned mass media and to civil societies before making a decision on proceeding with the building of the cable cars in the Son Doong area (which belongs to the Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park). [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

DARK SIDE TO ASEAN TRADE GROWTH
03.11.2014 Tan Hui Yee, The Straits Times (ANN) - Thousands of logs are moved around Southeast Asia annually, much of the activity illegal.
Some of the trees are felled in Laos and Cambodia, with the timber shipped across the border to Vietnam, where they are turned into furniture and then sold to neighbouring China.
Enforcement officials already have a hard enough time keeping track of such timber and related products, which were estimated to be worth US$11 billion in 2010.
Experts warn that it will soon get harder when Customs procedures are streamlined across Asean countries under economic integration plans, to begin in a year's time.
Dazu gehören Drogenhandel, Menschenhandel Betroffenen, Elektronikschrott und gefährdete Wildtiere. [read more]

VIETNAM DELAYS NUCLEAR POWER PLANT CONSTRUCTION
01.11.2014 Sonal Patel (POWER) - Vietnam won’t begin work on its first of eight planned nuclear power plants until at least 2020 or 2022 to ensure safety, the country’s Trade Ministry announced in September.
Russia’s state-owned nuclear company Rosatom was expected to begin construction of the first two-reactor plant in the south-central province of Ninh Thuan at the end of this year.
Russia’s Rosatom will build Vietnam’s Ninh Thuan-1 nuclear power plant, which will feature two water-cooled, water-moderated reactors of the VVER type with a capacity of 1,000 MW to 1,200 MW each. Russia’s Atomstroyexport is expected to be the general contractor for the project. [read more]

18 RHINOZEROS-HÖRNER BESCHLAGNAHMT
01.11.2014 (Handelszeitung) - In Südafrika sind zwei Vietnamesen mit einer Rekordmenge geschmuggelter Rhinozeros-Hörner im Gepäck festgenommen worden. Die beiden 25 und 26 Jahre alten Männer wurden am Freitagabend in einem Flugzeug beim Zwischenstopp in Johannesburg gefasst.
Zuvor hatte die Polizei Informationen über die Schmuggelware in ihrem Gepäck erhalten, wie ein Sprecher am Samstag sagte. Demnach befanden sie sich auf einem Flug von Mosambiks Hauptstadt Maputo in die vietnamesische Hauptstadt Hanoi.
Eigentlich hätten die Passagiere während des einstündigen Zwischenstopps in Johannesburg an Bord bleiben sollen, doch liess die Polizei wegen der Hinweise auf die Schmuggelware alle aussteigen und das Gepäck von einem Spürhund untersuchen. Laut dem Polizeisprecher wurden dabei 18 intakte Rhinozeros-Hörner entdeckt. Es handelt sich um den grössten Fund aller Zeiten in Südafrika. [Weiterlesen]

HUGE RHINO HORN BUST: 18 ON FLIGHT - TWO VIETNAMESE ARRESTED
01.11.2014 (Emirates247) - Two Vietnamese men were arrested at Johannesburg airport with a record haul of 18 rhino horns, weighing 41 kilos (90 pounds), during a stopover on a flight from Mozambique to Vietnam, South African police said Saturday.
"This is the largest haul of rhino horns seized in one operation in South Africa," said a joint statement from police and customs officials. The flight had started in Maputo, Mozambique, and was heading to Hanoi.
Police said it was believed the horns, which were still intact, were removed from South African rhinos. The two Vietnamese, aged 25 and 26, were in police custody after being stopped late Friday. They were due to appear in court on Monday. [read more]

DER PROTESTMARSCH IM ANZUG
31.10.2014 Von Jan Knüsel (Asienspiegel) - Vor einem Jahr entschieden 600 Büroarbeiter auf ein nächtliches Feierabendbier mit dem Vorgesetzten zu verzichten. Stattdessen gingen sie in ihren Anzügen auf die Strasse im Tokioter Geschäftsviertel Shimbashi, um gegen die AKW-Politik der Regierung Abe zu protestieren...
Die Botschaft war klar: Nicht nur Studenten, Pensionäre, Hausfrauen und Selbständige, sondern auch «normale Angestellte» wehren sich gegen das geplante Wiederhochfahren der AKW in Japan. Auch ein Jahr später gibt es die Bewegung noch – und sie wird mehr denn je gebraucht.
Rund 200 Salarymen zogen diese Woche durch die Strassen von Shimbashi, um gegen die anstehende Wiederinbetriebnahme des AKW Sendai in der Stadt Satsumasendai auf der Südinsel Kyushu zu protestieren, wie die Tokyo Shimbun berichtet. «Wir brauchen keine Atomkraftwerke!», «Wir fordern den AKW-Ausstieg!» hiess es auf ihren Transparenten. [Weiterlesen]

A CONVERSATION WITH BLACK SEA FISHERMEN ABOUT A NUCLEAR POWER PLANT IN THEIR BACKYARD
02.09.2014 Michiko Yoshii (The Asahi Shimbun) - I had the opportunity to visit Istanbul and decided to check out the city of Sinop on the Black Sea coast.
I heard of Sinop after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster when it was picked as the site for a nuclear power plant using technology exported from Japan.
The shadow of Chernobyl
The number of cancer-related deaths due to the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster is reportedly rising on Turkey's Black Sea coast. Radiation carried by northerly winds fell on the area with the rain.
Vietnam also has a fishing village where there are plans to build a nuclear power plant with Japanese technology, but the situation there is somewhat different.
The village does not have a stylish cafe and terrace for tourists next to the fishing port as Sinop does. In Vietnam, if a few fishermen and I, a single Japanese person, had started to say through an interpreter that we "oppose nuclear power plants," then we would have been taken away by the public security police long ago. [read more]

RÜCKRUF: STARK ÜBERHÖHTE ALUMINIUMGEHALTE IN FERTIGMEHLMISCHUNGEN AUS VIETNAM
11.08.2014 (CleanKids-Magazin) - Aufgrund stark überhöhter Aluminiumgehalte in den folgenden Fertigmehlmischungen aus Vietnam werden diese zurückgerufen.
Die  Produkte wurden bundesweit vor allem über sog. Asia-Märkte verkauft
Im Fertigmehl “Bot Banh Bong Lan Nuong” wurde ein Aluminiumgehalt von 1670mg/Kg festgestellt. Die Europäische Behörde für Lebensmittelsicherheit EFSA hat den Grenzwert für die wöchentlich tolerierbare Aufnahmemenge (TWI) auf ein Milligramm Aluminium je Kilogramm Körpergewicht festgelegt [Weiterlesen]

'MEKONG DELTA WILL BE PARTLY SUBMERGED'
21.07.2014 Supalak Ganjanakhundee, Can Tho, Vietnam (The Nation) - BY THE END of this century, 20 per cent of Vietnam's business hub Ho Chi Minh City will be inundated and 39 per cent of the Mekong Delta will be submerged, according to a Vietnamese study.
Such a prediction might not be so accurate. The study only used the map and assumed that the ocean would rise some centimetres, but could not say exactly how high.
However the climate change phenomenon in this century would have some severe implications for the Mekong Delta and the livelihoods of the local people.
The "Mekong Delta Plan: Long Term Vision and Strategy", conducted by Vietnam's Natural Resource and Environment Ministry and the Dutch government, indicates that climate is already changing the delta, which ranks among the top five in the world most likely to be severely affected by climate change, according to the report, which was released last December. [read more]

NRA PANEL: TSUNAMI LED TO FUKUSHIMA MELTDOWN
18.07.2014 (NHK) - A panel of experts at Japan's Nuclear Regulation Authority has concluded that the tsunami triggered the meltdown during the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.
The panel presented on Friday a draft interim report on its probe into the accident.
The experts' conclusion differs from that of a Diet commission about the loss of an emergency power source at the Number One reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. [read more]

JAPAN FACES ANOTHER SUMMER OF POWER SHORTAGES
18.07.2014 Written by Todd Crowell (Asia Sentinel) - A nervous government and a reluctant citizenry keep nuclear power on hold
For the first time since the disaster at Fukushima Daiichi three years ago, Japan faces a summer without the prospect of electricity from nuclear power plants. This is despite the atomic regulator’s decision July 16 to affirm the safety of two reactors in the far western corner of the country.
As was widely expected, the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) officially affirmed that the Sendai plants, owned and operated by the Kyushu Electric Power Company, conformed to the revised set of safety requirements that were adopted in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear accident.
That doesn’t mean that the two units will go on line anytime soon. In the first place, the report is in draft form and won’t be confirmed for a month following public hearings, likely to be very contentious. Then there follows a two-month inspection of the hardware, leading to a possible restart in October. [read more]

IS IT TIME FOR AN ASIAN ENVIRONMENTAL MIRACLE?
17.07.2014 Written by Erik Solheim (Asia Sentinel) - The world is changing fast as Asia continues to surge ahead. In fewer than two generations, the Republic of Korea has gone from being one of the poorest countries in the world to one of the richest and a global leader in technology and manufacturing. The People’s Republic of China is set to become the largest economy in the world this year. In Viet Nam, 15-year-olds are performing above OECD average in education. Under the new leadership of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India will aim for the skies.
Half of the world’s population lives in Asia and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) has estimated that the region will account for 50 percent of the world’s economic activity by 2050. That would lead to a radical change in economic power. But in historical terms, this is really a return to the normal state of global affairs. For most of world history, up to around 1800, Asia was at the center and Europe on the periphery. [read more]

EXAMINING THE IMPACT OF THE DON SAHONG DAM
28.06.2014 By Michelle Tolson (AsianCorrespondent) - This week the controversial Don Sahong Dam proposal was revisited by the 20th Mekong River Commission (MRC) Council Meeting in Bangkok on Thursday.  The MRC discussed whether the proposal needed (as a mainstream project) to go through the  prior consultation process instead of the simpler prior notification process the Laos government had already submitted.
Since 2008, the proposed Laos hydropower project, to be built across the lower Mekong River mainstream, has dipped in and out of media consciousness, returning with a vengeance in 2013 when the Laos government decided to begin construction on the dam, to be built in the 4,000 Islands region near the Cambodia border. [read more]

LAOS TO GO AHEAD WITH CONTROVERSIAL MEKONG DAM
Laos to go ahead with controversial Mekong dam
27.06.2014 By Casey Hynes (AsianCorrespondent) - Serious concerns remain despite officials’ promise to hear input from locals and neighboring Mekong nations
Activists concerned with development along the Mekong River saw a small victory this week when the Supreme Administrative Court of Thailand agreed to take a case against Thai government agencies that purchased power from the Xayaburi dam in neighboring Laos. The Bangkok Post reported that the villagers who filed the complaints “accused the agencies of not complying with constitutional requirements before signing an agreement to purchase power from the Xayaburi dam.”
The villagers filed three orders with the court, according to the Bangkok Post: The first was to withdraw the cabinet resolution that allowed the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) to purchase power from the Xayaburi Power Company; the second was to revoke the Power Purchase Agreement that was signed in 2011; and the third requested that the defendants “respect community rights and comply with the constitution by arranging transparent public hearings, as well as health and environmental impact assessments before signing power purchase.” The first two orders were dismissed, but the court supported the third. [read more]

MOSAMBIKS ELEFANTEN IN GEFAHR
20.06.2014 (WWF) - Berlin - In den letzten drei Jahren sind im Quirimbas Nationalpark im Norden Mosambiks bis zu 900 Elefanten ums Leben gekommen, wie eine Wildtierzählung des WWF ergeben hat. Jeder zweite der aus der Luft gezählten Dickhäuter sei tot gewesen, berichten die Umweltschützer. Mit nun unter 1.000 Elefanten sei die Population im Nationalpark auf einem historischen Tiefstand angelangt.
Nach Angaben des WWF hat sich Mosambik in den letzten Jahren zu einer Drehscheibe für den internationalen Wildtierschmuggel entwickelt.
über Mosambik erfolge dann die Verschiffung der Waren nach Asien. Vor allem in China, Vietnam und Thailand erzielen die Stoßzähne der Elefanten und das Horn von Nashörnern hohe Preise auf dem Schwarzmarkt. [Weiterlesen]

GENPATSU/ANTI NUCLEAR DEMONSTRATION IN BERLIN GERMANY
08.03.2014 Video [Youtube]

VIETNAM'S ILLEGAL TRADE IN RHINO HORN
09.02.2014 By Sue Lloyd Roberts (BBC) - Record numbers of rhinos are being poached and killed in South Africa for their horn. Many of those horns end up being sold illegally for their supposed medicinal properties - in countries such as Vietnam.
On 30 December 2013, a park ranger on patrol in South Africa stumbled across the body of a two-tonne, 3m-long dead rhino. Its horn had been torn from its face and it had almost certainly died in slow agony. The ranger used his radio to contact the park HQ saying simply, "Another one gone."
They knew immediately what he meant.
Vietnam became a signatory to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species 20 years ago. The Cites secretariat has been urging the Vietnamese government for some years to tighten the laws and penalties against those selling horns. They were expected to have new laws in place in time for a conference on illegal wildlife trading being held in London this week. [read more] - [tiếng Việt]

Foto War on bear bile farms in Vietnam continues
WAR ON BEAR BILE FARMS IN VIETNAM CONTINUES

CRUEL bear bile farms in Vietnam are being increasingly shunned by tourists following a campaign by Brit charity Animals Asia.
07.02.2014 By: John Ingham (Scottish Daily Express) - It warned the main customers, Korean tourists, they could be arrested for buying the banned bile.The number of tour firms and tourists visiting bile farms in Halong Bay has plunged by more than half in three years.
Animals Asia has a £1 million sanctuary in a Vietnamese national park where it is caring for 107 bears rescued from the living hell of  bile farms.
In the farms the bears are kept in cages for up to 30 years with catheters permanently inserted into their bellies to "milk" their bile. [read more]

MORATORIUM ON WILDLIFE CONSUMPTION ISSUED FOR VIETNAMESE NEW YEAR
27.01.2013 by Jeremy Parker (Phys.org) - The Central Party of Vietnam has issued a condemnation of wildlife consumption prior to the Vietnamese New Year of Tet.
With the rise of a middle class with more disposable income, Vietnam has become a centre for wildlife trade, as reported in the Asian Journal of Criminology. The consumption of rare species, traditionally considered medicinally beneficial or valuable for their scarcity in Sino-Vietnamese culture, appreciably rises during Tet, a holiday during which lavish displays of wealth are commonly displayed.
By serving guests rare or unusual species, a host may show his largess, displaying his fortune and hopefully increasing his luck for the coming year. The reasons for the consumption of products from wildlife such as tigers, bears, sharks, primates, and snakes are varied, with claims including aphrodisiac effects, medicinal benefits, and in some instances, purely as gourmet delicacies. One thing is certain: an upwardly mobile population in Vietnam is now able to consume animal and plant products that were previously not affordable. This in turn has had a devastating effect on species both within Vietnam and abroad. Rhino horn alone sells for more than $100,000 per kg, and is in extremely high demand. [read more]

VIETNAM: A DELAY IN NUCLEAR POWER RAISES ENERGY SECURITY CONCERNS
24.01.2014 (The Manila Times) - Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has announced that the construction of the country’s first nuclear power plant, the 4,400-megawatt Ninh Thuan 1—slated to begin this year—will be delayed until 2020 due to concerns about safety and efficiency. Dung said national energy company Petrovietnam will need to build a 5,000-megawatt, natural gas-fired power plant complex to provide electricity in place of the nuclear plant.
The delay would undermine the energy security that nuclear power is eventually supposed to bring to Vietnam. Hanoi will increase imports of hydropower, coal and liquefied natural gas to make up for the share of future power supply that was ultimately projected to come from nuclear sources. This energy profile will put pressure on Vietnam’s ability to maintain trade balances and secure its maritime supply chain. Nevertheless, Hanoi hopes that buying time now will give it a greater capability to pursue nuclear power in future. [read more]

NUCLEAR SAFETY CONCERNS IN VIETNAM COULD DELAY JAPANESE PROJECT
18.01.2014 (The Asahi Shimbun) - Growing safety concerns in Vietnam could affect the Abe administration’s strategy of making exports of nuclear energy technology a pillar of Japan’s economic growth strategy.
Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung indicated that construction of the country’s first nuclear plant scheduled to start this year could be delayed until 2020, the Vietnam newspaper Tuoi Tre reported.
At a Jan. 15 meeting, Dung instructed PetroVietnam to secure a sufficient supply of fuel for power generation to prepare for a possible delay in construction, according to the report. [read more] 

BAU DES ERSTEN AKW UM JAHRE VERSCHOBEN
16.01.2014 (NZZ) - Vietnam verschiebt den Bau seines ersten Atomkraftwerks um voraussichtlich sechs Jahre. Grund sind Bedenken wegen Sicherheit und Effizienz, wie staatliche Medien am Donnerstag berichteten. Das Land, das sich im Zuge des Wirtschaftswachstums mit einer steigenden Energienachfrage konfrontiert sieht, benötigt dringend neue Energiequellen, da die Kohle und Wasserkraft den Bedarf nicht mehr decken können. [Weiterlesen] - [tiếng Việt]

VIETNAM MAY DELAY FIRST NUCLEAR POWER PLANT
16.01.2014 By Ho Binh Minh (Reuters) - HANOI - Vietnam may delay construction of its first nuclear power plant to 2020 to ensure safety and efficiency, a step that would mean it needs to find more natural gas to meet rising demand for electricity, according to the country's prime minister.
Talk of the delay comes as Vietnam is already struggling to meet natural gas demand and forecasting insufficient supplies for industrial development plans in its southern provinces.
Vietnam had originally planned to start building the Ninh Thuan 1 nuclear plant in 2014 and start operation in 2023, with help from Russia's state nuclear firm Rosatom. [read more - [tiếng Việt]

VIETNAM: BACK TO ORGANIC?
Worried about food safety, Vietnamese look again at small-scale organic farming.
02.01.2014 By Elisabeth Rosen (The Diplomat) - For two decades, Thanh was the only fruit vendor on Phan Huy Chu Street, in the heart of Hanoi’s downtown. But last year, a store opened across the street advertising “rau an toan” (safe produce). It was an assurance conspicuously missing from Thanh’s baskets of lychees and mangoes, displayed millimeters from the sidewalk.
Until recently, no one in Vietnam was talking about food safety. In the past year, however, it has become front-page news. Rumors about pesticide-contaminated grapes and rotten pork smuggled across the border from China made consumers aware that they no longer knew how and where their food was produced. [read more]







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