Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

By Ngoc Thanh, Tat Dinh   July 16, 2020 | 09:15 pm GMT+7
With vehicles blocked by residents from entering Hanoi's biggest landfill Nam Son, trash from four downtown districts is temporarily collecting in another landfill site in the city.
Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

Dozens of workers gather at the Cau Dien solid waste treatment area of Hanoi Urban Environment Company (Urenco 7) in Nam Tu Liem District Wednesday night to sort collected trash.

Since late last week, residents of Hong Ky and Nam Son communes in Soc Son District have blocked vehicles from entering Nam Son in protest against compensation and resettlement delays, causing thousands of tons of trash to build up across downtown Hanoi.

Soc Son is a rural district, located 25 km north of the city's center while Nam Tu Liem is 15 km west of the downtown.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

High-pressure pumps are employed to dampen the stench and kill flies across a 200-meter radius from the collection point.

"When the trash arrived the smell was not too bad. Only when we remove it does the smell become horrendous. Trash collected for too long produces toxic gas, which could cause dizziness in the absence of proper protective gear," said Nguyen Thi Thuy, 35, a Urenco 7 employee. She said she only had time for a quick meal at home before returning for an additional shift lasting til 2 a.m.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

Bulldozers gather trash into piles that could reach three meters, covered by large sheets to prevent the stench from spreading.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

Garbage trucks deliver trash to the Cau Dien waste treatment area from around 7:30 p.m.

Tran Van Khai, deputy director of Urenco 7, said the firm had to deploy around 60 workers, two bulldozers, trash leakage containers and deodorant to deal with 1,200-1,500 tons of garbage a day for an entire week.

"This is an emergency response situation as instructed by city authorities. We try our best to contain the smell and leakage. Once vehicles can enter the Nam Son landfill, all trash collected here would be removed," he said.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

Vehicles carrying around 300 tons of trash dump their loads inside a 2,000-square-meter area every hour. All vehicles are recorded during operation.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

At around 8:30 p.m., several locals in Tay Mo Ward, Nam Tu Liem District abruptly blocked garbage trucks from entering the Cau Dien waste treatment area, causing hundreds of trucks to park along Tran Huu Duc Street for around two hours.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

A driver sits on a nearby lawn while trucks are blocked from entering the treatment site.

District authorities have had to convince locals to let the vehicles enter, but only four trucks were allowed to do so. The rest had to move their loads to the Xuan Son landfill in Son Tay Town, around 40 km away.

Blocked landfill queues Hanoi garbage crisis

As of 2 a.m., workers were still on duty to receive trash, despite locals still not allowing the trucks entry. Water tanks were deployed to clean up areas surrounding the collection point instead.

 
 
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