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THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
SOCIALIST REPUBLIC OF VIET NAM
Independence - Freedom – Happiness
Hanoi, December 27, 1993
Environmental protection as defined in this document includes activities to keep the environment clean and healthy; to prevent overcome and unfavourable influence on environment by people and nature; to exploit and use rationally environmental component;
In this document the terms used should be understood as:
1. The environment is a matrix of natural and man-made factors that affect production, life, and the existence and development of humans and nature.
2. Environmental components include air, water, land, land bed, sea, forests, plants, and animals, ecosystems, living areas, production areas, national parks and land-scapes.
3. An ecosystem is a system of communities of creatures living in a certain environment conditions and affecting one another.
4. Biological diversity is the complex of genetic resources, species of living creatures and ecosystems in nature.
5. Waste is the material which is discharged from production and living activities as well as from other activities; and exists in various forms: solid, liquid and air.
6. Polluting materials are materials in forms of solid, liquid, air and other forms that pollute environment.
7. Environment pollution involves changes of physical, chemical, biological characteristics of environment due to the discharge of polluting materials exceeding allowable levels into environment.
8. Environment degradation is degradation in quality of environment components which exerts negative effects on human life and nature.
9. Environment incidents are catastrophes, unfortunate cases that happen in the process of human activities or changes of nature; and cause harm to environment.
10. Clean technologies are technologies or technical approaches that do not make polluting materials.
11. Environment standards are regulations on levels, determining methods used as a basis for management of environment quality.
12. Evaluation of effect on environment is the process of analysis, evaluation, prediction of effects on environment caused by production, business units, technico-economic, socio-cultural, defense-security projects; and finding out appropriate solutions for environment protection.
The State manages environment protection throughout the country.
The State will issue policies to invest, to stimulate and to protect legal interests of either domestic or overseas organisations and individuals that invest under various forms, apply scientific, technological achivements on protection, improvement of environment, on rational utilisation and exploitation of environment components.
The State organises training, scientific, technological research activities, dissemination of scientific and legal knowledge of environment protection.
The State protects the country's interests in environment and natural resources.
The Government will expand its cooperation in environment protection with neighbouring countries, countries in the region as well as other countries in the world, with international organisations, foreign organisations and individuals.
All the organisations and individuals must observe the Law on Environment Protection and denounce illegal activities in environment protection to the authorities in charge.
Foreign organisations and individuals working in Vietnam have the obligation to comply with the Law on Environment Protection of Vietnam.
The organisations and individuals using environment components for production, business purposes are obliged to pay fee of environment use in accordance with legal regulations.
People's Councils, People's Committees, other State organs, the Vietnam National Front and its subordinating organisations in their duties and responsibilities are responsible for controlling, supervising and observing the Law on Environment Protection.
All the activities that may exert degrading, polluting effects on environment are prohibited.
PREVENTING AND RESISTING ENVIRONMENT DEGRADATION, POLLUTION AND INCIDENTS
All the organisations and individuals are responsible for preventing and resisting environment degradation, pollution and incidents.
The State will stimulate and create favourable conditions for organisations, individuals in use and rational exploitation of environment components, application of advance technologies, application of new, clean technologies, making uses of waste, economisation of materials, use of re-created energy and biological products in research, production and consumption.
Organisations and individuals are responsible for protection of wild animals, plants, ecological systems, for ensuring biological diversification.
The use of national parks, exploitation of natural landscapes must be permitted by the Sector management organisation and State management organisation on environment protection.
The Government will determine the list of rare, precious species and national parks.
The exploitation of biological resources must be carried out with appropriate methods, with determined equipment in order to ensure their recover in both number and species, not to disturb the ecological balance, to gain much profit for people, society and nature.
Enterprises, business organisations and other units that exert negative effects on environment have to take measures, equipment to treat the waste in order to ensure environment standards, to prevent and resist environment incidents.
Upgrading and building new production, living areas, economic-technical, socio-cultural, security-defence and other projects must be in compliance with regulations on environment standards; they can come into operation only after the examination and confirmation by the State management organisation on environment protection.
The Government will determine the list of environment standards and arrange the authorities at different levels to issue these standards.
Organisations and individuals are obliged to protect water resources, water supply and drainage systems, green trees, hygienic projects, to observe regulations on public hygiene in urban, rural areas, in tourist resorts and other areas.
The import of technologies, machinery, bio-products, chemicals which may cause damage to environment; of toxic chemicals, radioactive materials; the import and export of animals, plants, micro-biology genetics related to environment protection must be permitted by the State management organisation on environment protection.
The Government will determine details of issues mentioned in this Article.
Economic, scientific-technical, socio-cultural, security-defence units and projects which have existed before the issue of this Law must submit report on evaluation of effects on environment of their units, projects to the State management organisation on environment protection for consideration.
Organisations, individuals, preparing socio-economic development projects, investment projects with foreign countries must submit report on evaluation of effects on environment to the State management organisation for consideration.
The result of consideration will be one of bases for project appraisal.
The use, exploitation of agricultural and silvicultural land must be in compliance with the land projection; chemical fertilizers and pesticides in cultivation must be used in accordance with legal regulations.
Measures to limit the rate of erosion, desertification, saunization and lateritization of land must be taken in an production, business and construction activities.
Organisations, individuals that are engaged in exploration, exploitation, transportation and processing of minerals must apply appropriate technologies in order to ensure environment hygiene, labour safety and to protect relevant environment components.
Appropriate technologies must be applied in exploration, exploitation processing, transportation and storage of oil in order to ensure environment hygiene, labour safety and to protect relevant environment components. Appropriate alternatives and equipment must be ready to prevent, resist, oil slick in the sea, to treat in time and minimise the damage caused by oil slick.
Toxic chemicals used in exploration and processing of oil must have technical certificate and must be controlled, approved by the State management organisation on environment protection.
Organisations, individuals that use means of water, road, rail and air transportation are obliged to observe regulations on environment standards.
The vehicles must be under supervision, regular examination of environment standards by the Sector management organisation and State management organisation on environment protection.
Organisations, individuals using, storing or destroying toxic chemical, toxic waste have the obligation to follow the regulations on safety for people, animals, plants, and not to pollute the environment or cause environment incidents.
The State management organisation on environment protection will determine the list of the chemicals mentioned in this Article.
Organisations, individuals, producing, using, storing and transporting radioactive materials, when determining location, designing, constructing and operating nuclear factories, stations, research and experiment centres; burying radioactive materials, materials containing radioactive materials; are obliged to observe regulations on radium, radioactive, nuclear safety and regulations of the State management organisation on environment protection.
Organisations, individuals using machines, equipment, materials with source for harmful magneto-electric, ion radiation must observe regulation, safety and regularly examine the level of their effect on environment.
Establishment of places for rubbish collection, rubbish concentration and rubbish transportation must comply with the regulation of local authorities.
For rubbish containing toxic materials, source for diseases, flammable materials, explosive materials, there must be specific measures of treatment under the supervision of the State management organisation on environment protection.
Activities concerning burry of died people must apply progressive methods, comply with the relevant regulations in the Law on Public Health Protection in order to ensure environment hygiene.
Cemeteries must be far away from living areas and water resources.
Organisations, individuals in all their activities must limit noise and vibration within the allowable levels in order not to affect people's health and life.
The Government will determine the production, transportation, storage and use of explosives fire crackers.
The following activities are prohibited:
1. The discharging of toxic smoke, gas, dust exceeding allowable levels and adding smells into the air which are harmful for people's and animal's health.
2. To discharge oil, toxic chemicals, radioactive materials exceeding allowable levels, waste, animal and plant corpses, disease viruses into water resources, lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, canals and sea.
3. The burying or discharging of toxic chemicals, materials, pesticides exceeding allowable levels into land, waterlogged land, land-bed which decreases soil fertility, pollute soil and water resources.
4. The exploitation of or trade in rare and precious animals, and plant species in the list defined by the Government.
5. The importation of waste from foreign countries into Vietnam for treatment and processing; equipment, technologies that do not satisfy environment standards.
6. To apply mass destruction equipment, means, methods in exploitation of animal and plant resources.
OVERCOMING ENVIRONMENT DEGRADATION, POLLUTION AND ACCIDENTS
Organisations, individuals are obliged to take measures to overcome environment degradation, pollution and accidents.
Organisations individuals causing environment degradation, pollution in their production, business activities, are obliged to take overcoming measures in accordance with regulations of the State management organisation on environment protection.
Organisations, individuals that allow electricomagnetic rediation let magnetoelectrics, ion radiation, radioactivity to exceed the allowable levels have to take immediate measures to treat and overcome damages, to report timely to the Sector and State management organisations on environment protection as well as to local authorities.
Environment accidents may happen due to the following reasons:
1. Typhoon, flood, draught, land crack, land slide, land crumbling earthquake, volcanic eruption, acid rain, hail, climatic changes and other calamities.
2. Fire, forest fire, technical accidents that make harm to the environments of technical-economical, socio-cultural, defence-security projects.
3. Incidents during process of searching, exploration, exploitation of minerals, oil, mine collapse, oil eruption, crack of oil pipelines, sinking of oil tankers and accidents in crude-oil processing factories.
4. Incidents or accidents in nuclear active stations, atom power stations, nuclear processing, re-creating factories, storages of radioactive materials.
Overcoming environment accidents, pollution, degradation include following activities:
1. To rescue human lives, properties;
2. To repair damaged projects;
3. To relieve, help to stabilize people's living;
4. To restore production;
5. To create environment hygiene, resist pests and diseases;
6. To investigate, make report of damages, to observe environment change.
7. To rehabilitate the environment in places of damage.
The man who notices signals of an environment accident is obliged to inform immediately to the nearest state organ or organisations.
Organisations, individuals in places of environment accident have to take temporary measures and report to the organs at higher level, to local authorities and the nearest State management organisation on environment protection.
The Chairman of People's Committee in place of environment accident has the right to urgently mobilise manpower and material in order to overcome the accident.
In case environment accidents happen on territory of some localities, Chairmen of the People's Committee cooperate in overcoming the situation.
In case the damages exceed the local capability to solve, the Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment (MOSTE) reports and proposes overcoming measures to the Prime Minister.
In case environment accidents are extremely serious, the Prime Minister will decide to take urgent measures.
When the accident is overcome the Prime Minister will cancel the urgent measures.
The organs that are responsible for mobilisation of manpower, materials to overcome environment accidents are obliged to pay to mobilised organisations, individuals in accordance with legal regulations.
STATE MANAGEMENT OF ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION
State management on environment protection including following activities
1. To work out, directly implement strategies, policies on environment protection, to outline plans to prevent, resist, overcome environment degradation, pollution, incidents.
2. To build, manage projects of environment protection, projects relating to environment protection.
3. To issue and organise the implementation of legal documents and the system of standards on environment protection.
4. To establish, organise and manage a system of observation to evaluate regularly environment status and to predict environment changes.
5. To consider reports on evaluation of effects on environment of production, business units and projects.
6. To grant or recover certifications on satisfactory with environment standards.
7. To examine, inspect, supervise the observance of the Law on Environment Protection to settle disputes, proceedings concerning environment protection, to settle violation of the Law on Environment Protection.
8. To train specialists of environment, to propaganda, disseminate scientific and legal knowledge of environment protection.
9. To undertake research activities, to apply scientific, technological achievements in environment protection.
10. To carry out international cooperation in environment protection.
The Government unifies the State management of environment protection throughout the country.
The Ministry of Science Technology and Environment (MOSTE) implements the State management function on environment protection.
Various ministries, other organs in the same line, organs that subordinate to the Government implement the State management function on environment protection in accordance with their functions and responsibilities.
People's Committees at different levels implement the State management function on environment protection in accordance with guidelines of the MOSTE.
Departments of Science, Technology and Environment support the city and Provincial People's Committees to implement the State management function on environment protection within their boundaries.
Organisational structure, functions, rights and responsibilities of State management organisations will be determined by the Government.
INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION IN ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION
The Government of Vietnam gives priority to countries, international oganisations, foreign organisations and individuals in training of specialists, in scientific research of environment, in application of clean technologies, in drafting and realising projects to improve, overcome environment degradation pollution and incidents, projects to treat the waste.
The Government of Vietnam implements international commitments, agreements on environment protection that it has signed or participated in, respects international commitments on environment protection on the principles of respect for the independence, sovereignty, territorial unity and mutual benefit.
People and transport vehicles pasting the frontier of Vietnam with source that may cause environment pollution are obliged to ask for permission to declare and to be supervised, examined by the State management organisation of Vietnam on environment protection.
Disputes on environment protection with foreign factor that take place on the territory of Vietnam, must be solved in accordance with Vietnamese laws with reference to international laws and customs.
Disputes on environment protection with foreign countries should be solved on the basis of reconciliation and mutual benefit.
ENVIRONMENT INSPECTION AND SETTLEMENT OF VIOLATION
The State management organisation performs specialised inspection function on environment protection.
Organisations structure, rights and responsibilities of specialised inspection of environment protection are determined by the Government.
During the process of inspection, inspection teams or inspectors have the following rights:
1. To propose the relevant organisations and individuals to supply documents and answer all the questions necessary for the inspection.
2. To undertake technical inspections.
3. To suspend temporarily or to propose the state organs in charge to suspend environment degrading, polluting activities.
4. To settle violation of the Law in accordance with their responsibilities, or to propose the State organs in charge to settle.
Inspected organisations, individuals, are obliged to facilitate inspection teams or inspectors in their work and to comply with the decisions by them.
Organisations, individuals have the right to complain to the Head of the Inspection Organs about decisions of the inspection teams or inspectors.
Organisations, individuals have the right to complain, denounce to the State management organs on environment protection or other state organs about activities of violation of the Law on Environment Protection.
The organs receiving letters of complain, denouncement have the responsibility to consider and solve them in accordance with legal regulations.
Responsibilities, and rights to deal with violation when occur environment degradation, pollution or accidents are defined as follows:
1. Within one province or city: specialised inspector on environment protection of the province or the city inspects, settles or proposes the Chairman of People's Committee of the province or city to settle.
2. On territory of more than 2 provinces or cities: specialised inspector on environment protection of MOSTE inspects, settles or proposes the Minister of MOSTE to settle.
3. In case of extremely serious violation and the parties do not agree on the decisions mentioned in point 1 and 2 of this Article, they may complain to the Prime Minister.
The man who is involved in destruction activities that make harm to the environment, who does not comply with mobilisation by the state organ in charge when environment accident occurs, who does not follow regulations on evaluation of effects on environment and violates other legal regulations on environment protection, is administratively punished or prosecuted in accordance with characteristics and levels of violation and damages.
The man who abuses his position, responsibilities and rights, violates regulations of the Law on Environment Protection, protects other people involved in violation of the Law, who is lack of responsibility which leads to environment pollution, accidents; is punished, prosecuted in accordance with characteristics and levels of violation and consequences.
Organisations, individuals who are involved in violation of the Law on Environment Protection, who cause damage to the State, other organisations and individuals are obliged to, apart from decisions mentioned in article 51 and 52 of this Law, recover the damages, overcome consequences in accordance with the laws.
Previous regulations that are against this Law are hereby repealed.
This Law is valid from the day of issue.
The Government shall issue detailed provisions of the implementation of this Law.
This Law was passed the IX Legislature of the National Assembly of Socialist Republic of Vietnam, at its 4th Session, on December 27th, 1993.
THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY
Nong Duc Manh
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