Vietnam to charge for household trash
By 2025, Vietnam will start charging households for garbage based on the amount of trash they throw away.
Its parliament has approved the move to have all households sort their trash into three groups — recyclable waste, food waste, and general waste.
Under the new environmental law, trash must be separated and put into eco-friendly bags.
Garbage collectors can refuse to collect the rubbish if households or businesses fail to do so.
According to a Vn Express news report, the new law states that the cost of collecting, transferring and treating the waste would be calculated based on the volume of trash one household discards.
So the more garbage they discard, the higher the fee.
Although the amended law will take effect from Jan 1, 2025, specific regulations and guidance on sorting trash and the fee calculations are yet to be determined by the Natural Resources and Environment Ministry.
The parliament also decided that the ministry must come up with the regulations and guidelines by Dec 31, 2024 so that it could be enforced latest by 2025.
Vietnam already has a law on sorting garbage at source since 2010, but after a decade, this has yet to be done and all types of garbage now end up at landfills across the country.
In March this year, Vietnam Environment Administration (VEA) proposed the pay-as-you-throw model.
The administration said it would draw on the experience of other countries in charging a trash collection fee in accordance with the amount of bags needed by each household.
Eventually, households that discard more trash would have to buy more bags.
“Fees collected from selling eco-friendly garbage bags will be spent on collecting, transporting and treating trash,” said Nguyen Thuong Hien, deputy head of VEA.
Families in urban areas now pay garbage collection fees of between VND25,000 and VND30,000 amonth.
Environment Minister Tran Hong Ha said the new pricing mechanism would push people to sort trash at source and help reduce the amount of trash dumped into the environment.
Vietnam now produces about 25.5 million tonnes of solid waste a year, of which 75 per cent is buried and the balance is incinerated.
Major landfills in big cities Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang and Hanoi have reached their capacities and this is affecting the lives of those living near them.
Cities such as Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City spend between VND1.2 trillion and VND1.5 trillion a year each, or around 3.5 per cent of their city budgets, on collecting, treating and disposing garbage.
The New Straits Times (.my) – November 20, 2020