Officials inspect dioxin decontamination at Da Nang airport (Photo: VOV)
Da Nang (VNA) – Minister of Defence Ngo Xuan Lich inspected the US-funded dioxin decontamination project currently underway in Da Nang airport in the central city of Da Nang on January 8.

He recognised the significant outcomes in implementing the national action plan for basically overcoming consequences of toxic chemicals used by the US during the war in Vietnam. The action plan was for the 2012-2015 with orientations towards 2020.

Domestic units have closely worked with the US Agency for International Development (USAID) to complete the first phrase of the dioxin decontamination project in Da Nang airport, he said.

The minister urged the involved parties to carry out effectively and ensure the progress and quality of the second phase, while building and implementing similar projects in Bien Hoa and Phu Cat airports via non-refundable official development assistance (ODA) sponsored by the US and other countries.

He suggested stepping up international cooperation to deal with the toxic chemicals at hotspots and newly-discovered contaminated areas.

At the same time, it is necessary to promptly provide medical support for the Agent Orange (AO)/Dioxin victims, and improve research and environmental monitoring capacity in the field, he added.

Major General Bui Anh Chung, deputy commander of the Air Force Air Defence Command, said the US-sponsored dioxin treatment project was launched in June 2011 with a majority of workload completed.

The use of thermal treatment system (In-Pile Thermal Desorption-IPTD) in the first phrase helped clean up around 19 hectares of land and ponds, 5.97 hectares of which were handed over to the Vietnam Airlines to build an expanded apron and runway to serve the APEC Summit in 2017.

More land will be handed over to the company in January 2017 to serve the local socio-economic development, Chung said, adding that the thermal treatment system for the second phase was put into operation in November 2016.

The project-involved units also have taken into account environmental pollution issues and closely monitor hazardous waste.-VNA