The Project “Demonstration of Best Available Techniques (BAT) and Best Environmental Practices (BEP) in open burning practices in response to the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)” is one of the practical projects to implement the Stockholm Convention. The project is funded by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) through the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) with the participation of five countries, including Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, Mongolia and the Philippines. The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is the lead agency of the project and the Vietnam Environment Administration is the implementing agency.

The Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants was adopted on 22 May 2001 and entered into force on 19 May 2004. Vietnam ratified the Convention on 22 July 2002 and became the 14th member state of the Convention.

The Stockholm Convention was established with the aim of protecting human health and the environment from risks caused by POPs which are toxic chemicals, can be transported by wind and water, most POPs generated in one country can and do affect to people and wildlife far from where they are used and released. Furthermore, the chemicals persist for long periods of time in the environment and can accumulate and pass from one species to the next through the food chain, thus, adversely affect to human health and the environment around the world.

In recent years, Vietnam has carried out many activities in implementing the Convention. The Government has also enacted the National Implementation Plan for the Stockholm Convention in Decision 184/2006/QD-TTg. Accordingly, Vietnam has mobilized a lot of resources, implemented large number of projects under 184/2006/QD-TTg, has implemented 16 international projects on POPs; received the consent of international organizations and the recognition of countries in the region and the world; The public awareness of POPs has also improved significantly.

In the framework of the project “Demonstration of BATs and BEPs in open burning practices in response to the Stockholm Convention on POPs”, the stakeholders aim to reduce the formation of unintentionally produced POPs (U-POPs), in particular in Vietnam, specially focus on open burning activities in the craft villages.

The overall objective of the project is to reduce effectively and sustainably the emissions of U-POPs from open burning activities. The specific objectives of the project include: (i) strengthening the legal framework for the development and application of BATs/BEPs in open burning; (ii) strengthening institutional capacity and human resources to implement BATs/BEPs in open burning; (iii) demonstrate BATs/BEPs solutions in the management of open burning in the field of agricultural waste management and landfill/ waste disposal; (iv) raising awareness and understanding of BATs/BEPs and risks associated with U-POPs due to open burning activities. The objective of the pilot activity in Vietnam is to demonstrate the effectiveness of BATs/BEPs application in waste management and open burning in selected craft villages.

Project Inception Workshop

The project includes five components: (1) capacity building for BATs/BEPs in open burning; (2) enhancing human resource capacity to implement BATs/BEPs; (3) pilot BATs/BEPs in selected pilot sites; (4) enhance knowledge and understanding of BATs/BEPs and U-POPs related to risks caused by open burning activities; (5) monitoring and evaluation of the project.

The project aims to create an efficient system of waste management at source to reduce emission of U-POPs through the introduction of BAT/BEP in open burning practices. This project will play an important role in supporting the implementation of the objectives that Vietnam reported in the National Implementation Plan of the Stockholm Convention on POPs (NIP) and other national plans.

Abbreviations:

BAT: Best Available Techniques;

BEP: Best Environmental Practices;

GEF: Global Environment Facility;

NIP: National Implementation Plan;

POPs: Persistant organic pollutants;

UNIDO: United Nations Industrial Development Organization;

U-POPs:Unintentional persistent organic pollutants.