Vietnam is among the 20 countries with the largest amount of waste and higher than the world average. By the end of 2021, an average of 1.8 million tons of domestic waste will be discharged into the environment each year. This number is increasing and causing extremely serious consequences not only in the environment but also in the health of the people. Increased domestic waste can become an environmental and ecological “crisis” problem and is a headache for managers, especially in big cities. So what is the effective solution to waste treatment?
The National Assembly has also issued 2 resolutions including Resolution No. 32/2021/QH15 on the socio-economic development plan in 2022 and Resolution No. 16/2021/QH15 on the Socio-economic development plan for 5 years 2021-2025, all set targets on the rate of collection and treatment of municipal solid waste meeting standards and regulations at 89-90%, the rate of establishments causing serious environmental pollution to be treated reaches 100%.
Along with that, in order to implement Vietnam’s commitments at the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26), it is necessary to develop new solid waste treatment technologies, environmentally friendly and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
With the topic “Waste treatment technology – Which option is suitable”, the seminar was organized by the People’s Deputies Newspaper to exchange and record opinions of National Assembly deputies, experts, managers, and businesses, voters around the issue; create conditions for provinces, cities and businesses to access and decide on appropriate technology to handle current pressing problems; contribute to building a green economy and sustainable development.
Current status of treatment methods urban household waste
Journalist Nguyen Quoc Thang: Along with people’s living standards increasing and industrialization flourishing, domestic and industrial waste is increasing day by day with complex and diverse components, difficult to handle by traditional methods such as landfilling, simple recycling… Garbage has become a hot issue in urban life, threatening a sustainable, balanced and healthy life.
According to estimated data, currently nationwide, the amount of domestic solid waste generated is about 60,000 tons/day, of which urban areas account for 60%. By 2025, the rate of domestic solid waste generation is forecasted to increase by 10-16%/year. In big cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, every day there is from 7,000 to 9,000 tons of waste. It can be seen that when the economy develops and the living standard improves, the amount of waste also increases. Therefore, finding an effective method or technology for waste treatment is a “hot” spot with many problems and concerns that the government is still waiting for and people are looking forward to. The National Assembly has decided to target the rate of collection and treatment of municipal solid waste to ensure standards and regulations of 89-90%, and the rate of establishments causing serious environmental pollution to be treated to reach 100%. However, in order for the Resolution of the National Assembly not to become a slogan and unknown address, the responsibility of organizations and individuals who fail to fulfill the tasks requires the drastic intervention of the Government, all levels and sectors. And without drastic implementation and selection of appropriate technology, municipalities and cities cannot accomplish the goals as set forth in the Resolution of the National Assembly.
Journalist Nguyen Quoc Thang: Dear Prof. Nguyen Quoc Sy – Chairman of VinIT Institute of Technology, is a senior expert who has successfully researched the superior and environmentally friendly medical waste treatment plasma technology; The Institute’s products were patented by the Intellectual Property Office of Viet Nam in January 2022. So how do you evaluate the waste and the current state of waste treatment technologies?
Prof. Nguyen Quoc Sy – Chairman of VinIT Institute of Technology:
It can be said that the treatment of waste in Vietnam is the most difficult. Difficult not only in sorting, difficult not only in high humidity, low heat, low treatment cost per ton of garbage. And one of the most difficult problems today is the application of advanced technology to waste treatment. Developed countries such as Germany, Norway… waste over 1 ton is 50-80klo/1 ton, moisture content 20% and in Vietnam up to 60-70%, while the technology is not available, the collection system unsorted collection at source.
Second, waste treatment requires technology, we can’t shout slogans, because other countries can do landfill when they have a large area of land such as deserts, or uninhabited areas can be successful with landfill technology. But given the large population in Vietnam, our climate in the long run does not allow the use of landfill technology.
Currently, a technology that is gaining world attention is plasma technology. It also has certain disadvantages, but ensures the complete destruction of unclassified waste like that of Vietnam. But in terms of economy, technology transfer … must be considered. If we stand purely in terms of technology, it is the technology that we can pay attention to.
Third, about the habits and living style of Vietnamese people, the classification of garbage and collection is much more difficult than in other countries. This is not a one-way problem that we can change. At this point, if people don’t do garbage sorting they will be fined. But in the process of not being able to handle it, we must have steps and a roadmap.
Journalist Nguyen Quoc Thang: Dear Prof. Nguyen Quoc Sy, a senior expert in the field of research and application, plasma technology in waste treatment, would you like to share what advantages this technology has and what points do investors still wonder about?
Prof. Nguyen Quoc Sy – Chairman of VinIT Institute of Technology:
Regarding MYT technology, the actual thermic value is 3 times lower than the figures given by Mr. Nguyen Cao Tri. Secondly, in terms of technology, microorganisms decompose very slowly, affecting the process of industrial power generation.
As for plasma technology, the concerns of today’s delegates are to use high technology, although it is thoroughly processed, but the cost is very high. While at present technology we do not have anything. So, with the current high cost, can we access plasma technology?
Regarding waste treatment, we focus on research and application based on the technologies we have for further development in Vietnam. At the core of this technology is the use of a high-temperature thermal plasma stream to meet environmental requirements. And how to be commercial, profitable for investors.
I would like to introduce 2 technologies that are plasma gasification technology and plasma vitrification technology. With plasma gasification technology, it is a technology that turns carbon hydrogen in waste into syngas. We make this gas very quickly without the use of microorganisms.
In fact, there is no plasma technology in Vietnam, the current world’s plasma technology is incomplete. The first reason is that the world is using today is the DC plasma generator technology, which has a small lifespan and poor coefficient. And we are using is the 3-phase AC plasma generator, the working time is higher.
About the advantage of this technology is that the gasification technology at high temperature (T> 1,700°C) helps to thoroughly decompose organic and inorganic wastes, without releasing toxic substances such as Dioxins and Furans; Anaerobic (oxygen-poor) technology in which the energy used for the reaction is not based on conventional C and H oxidation but from the plasma stream; Large gasification coefficient (up to 93%-95%); The content of ash and slag discharged into the environment is low. Vitrified components can be used for the production of concrete slabs of breakwater; It is the only technology capable of thoroughly treating plastic waste, nylon, sulfur and toxic impurities (mercury, cadmium, lead, xenon, cyan, electronic waste, …) due to its inability to classified into domestic solid waste in Vietnam. Ensure all the most stringent environmental criteria such as G7, EURO6; No waste segregation, just pre-sorting to remove debris, bricks, stones, metal.
In terms of plasma vitrification technology, the advantage is that VinIT’s Plasma generator system has a concentrated heat source with a temperature of up to 7000-10000 K to help separate complex and toxic molecules into simple, non-toxic molecules. Toxic, non-generating Dioxin and Furan; The plasma heat source allows vitrification of hazardous chemicals and wastes; The content of ash and slag discharged into the environment is low. The slag composition in the form of glass can be buried and stored for a long time without affecting the environment; Advanced technology to treat hazardous waste, hazardous waste, medical waste, industrial waste, waste contaminated with heavy metals such as Mercury, Cadmium, Lead, Xenon, Cyan, electronic waste, etc. . VinIT owns the entire technological process from research, design to manufacture, assembly, operation and training, providing maintenance services, low investment, fast payback time from 5- 7 years, suitable for Vietnamese conditions.