Will Vietnam follow China down the pollution path?

THE news that China is bracing for smog waves as the winter heating season begins has once again put the dangerous levels of air pollution in Asia in the spotlight. With the air in Beijing and adjacent areas expected to become heavily polluted over the next week, China will be facing concern – yet again – over its underwhelming response to the problem. But while the world’s attention is focused on China’s losing battle to clean up its air pollution, Vietnam’s own turmoil is also coming into view. Amid the country’s heavy industry output surge, Hanoi should learn a lesson from China’s predicament and tackle the underlying issues contributing to pollution before they get locked into a narrow industrial strategy with environmental and social costs that can’t easily be reversed. SEE ALSO: Over 90pc of the world’s children are breathing toxic air China: overcapacities are driving pollution In China, coal is also the main pollution source, especially because of its use in heavy industry. However, while Vietnam’s economy has only fairly recently begun to take off in earnest, China’s has been in overdrive for years. Massive overcapacities in steel and aluminium have subsequently been built that account for much of the pollution. Confronted by public pressure, Beijing prioritised drastic overcapacity cuts in 2016. The policy envisioned closing plants that don’t meet environmental standards and encouraged companies to upgrade factories with pollution controls. Targets include decreasing steel capacity by 100 million tonnes over five years, and coal capacity by 500 million tonnes in the same period. However, progress appears to have stalled. The efforts so far to force production cuts have had rather underwhelming success, thanks to local governments circumventing the directive by cutting so-called “zombie capacity” – capacity that is already idle. Vietnamese workers leaving by motorcycles the site of the Taiwain-owned... If you wish to read this full breaking news headline, plus more articles from around Thailand and Asia like, Will Vietnam follow China down the pollution path?, simply click on 'Read full story' below, but 1st please give us a 'LIKE' or 'SHARE' before you leave. Thank you Will Vietnam follow China down the pollution path?





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Published By: ASIAN CORRESPONDENT - Wednesday, 21 November



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