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Villagers Voice Complaints About Factory Pollution

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n Sikhottabong district, Vientiane, are still complaining about air pollution and bad odours from a nearby recycling factory.

Meanwhile, Sikhottabong district environment officials have been reporting the problem to Vientiane authorities following complaints by Nonkhilek householders that they have been directly impacted by the plant’s pollution.

Nonkhilek village Chief Ms Southchay Vannala told Vientiane Times yesterday the factory is a recycling plant for electrical equipment.

The factory has been operating for a few years but releases clouds of smoke and strong smells, especially during wet weather.

Village officials and residents have asked for authorities’ help on many occasions. After authorities visited the factory the bad odours went away for a short time.

Ms Southchay said the factory was still discharging strong smelling plumes of smoke, affecting some 50 households in a 500 metre radius around the plant. Locals say the smell has affected their health, causing headaches and vomiting.

They had asked local authorities to help on many occasions but the problem has still not been resolved, villagers said.

A Sikhottabong district environment official, who asked not to be named, told Vientiane Times the recycling plant had been in business for a few years, jointly run by Lao and Chinese investors.

“Local households have called us saying they were suffering from the factory’s bad smells. When we surveyed the area we found the residents’ complaints to be justified,” the official said.

“After our survey, we reported to the Vientiane authorities and asked them to solve the problem a few years ago. The district environment sector has not been able to solve this problem, so the Vientiane authorities have been asked to fix it,” she added.

 

Source: Vientiane Times