Due to violations of environmental regulations, operations at Hao Duong Leather Tanning Joint Stock Company Le Hoang Quan have been immediately suspend by the Department of Natural Resources and Environment through a decree from the chairman of the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City. The Dong Dien River, a tributary of the Dong Nai River, in the Nha Be district, has been the focus of serious polluting by the leather manufacturer, which operates four factories that process about 55 tons of leather daily, and as a result, operations have ceased. Findings of the extent of environmental breaches will determine what further penalties will be meted out.
Hao Duong didn’t submit an environmental impact assessment to local authorities, and its untreated wastewater has a concentration of pollutants 22 times higher than allowed levels. They have already been fined by the city government VND340 million ($160,000) for causing pollution, and a Ho Chi Minh City Export processing and Industrial Zones Authority (HEPZA) report says Hao Duong owes more than VND640 million ($303,000) in back environmental protection fees, dating from February 2008 to March 2010. Furthermore, it’s also illegally used water from the Dong Dien River for production. Environmental controls have been ordered to be immediately implemented, as well as a total repair of environmental damage the tannery caused, which is also creating a rampant health issue to local residents.