Saigon to release air and water pollution data for first time this month

By VnExpress   March 3, 2017 | 06:13 am PT
Saigon to release air and water pollution data for first time this month
The air in Ho Chi Minh City is filled with exceeding amount of poisonous gases and fine dirt. Photo by VnExpress/Huu Nguyen
The data will be available on a number of websites and 48 electronic screens across the city.

Ho Chi Minh City will publicize official air and water pollution data for the first time later this month in an effort to let its citizens know how contaminated their city actually is.

The data, which will be released on a monthly basis, will be available on three websites run by the Department of Natural Resources and Environment and 48 electronic screens across the city, VietnamPlus reported on Friday.

The air quality data will include concentrations of nitrogen dioxide, carbon dioxide, dust and noise. The data on water quality in the city’s rivers and canals will include pH, biochemical oxygen demand and chemical oxygen demand readings.

Data collected by 20 tracking stations shows that carbon dioxide and dust levels around the city have risen sharply since 2014, the news site said.

Hanoi started releasing its Air Quality Index readings on January 9 to allow the public to keep track of pollution in the city.

The daily updates come amid growing concerns that air pollution in Hanoi has been worsening and reached dangerous levels, as warned by environmental experts in recent years.

An environment ministry study between 2011 and 2015 released just last year found that the air quality has become worse in many of Vietnam's urban areas, especially in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Ha Long, home to the world-renowned Ha Long Bay.

Nitrogen dioxide concentrations in Hanoi were measured at up to 1.3 times above the permitted level. In Ha Long the level was 1.2 times higher, and in Ho Chi Minh City’s District 1 it was found to be twice the permitted level during the period, according to the study.

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