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Bavet SEZ unequipped to treat its wastewater: ministry

A water treatment at the Manhattan Special Economic Zone that environmental officials recently deemed inadequate. Photo supplied
A water treatment at the Manhattan Special Economic Zone that environmental officials recently deemed inadequate. Photo supplied

Bavet SEZ unequipped to treat its wastewater: ministry

The Ministry of Environment said yesterday that a recently constructed water-treatment facility at the Manhattan Special Economic Zone in Svay Rieng is unable to deal with most of the polluted water generated by factories at the site, and that 70 per cent was being dumped untreated.

The industrial park in Bavet town has been at the centre of complaints from villagers, who accuse the firm of discharging untreated water into a canal they use.

Chea Sina, director at the ministry’s provincial office, said an inspection of the treatment plant found it could not process the more than 10,000 cubic metres of polluted water released every day by factories.

The inspection also showed that most of the wastewater had no way of getting to the treatment facility and was instead being dumped directly into the surroundings.

“We have seen that only 30 per cent of the waste reached their treatment facility, while 70 per cent was entering the canal,” Sina said.

On August 23, the industrial park was sent a letter ordering that all wastewater be treated, and stating that a second facility was needed. The company told the ministry it would be built by December.

Officials at the Manhattan SEZ could not be reached for comment, but the firm’s CEO Larry Kao said last month that individual factories were also responsible for treating their wastewater.

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