On Tuesday, the Chemical Command of the ministry made an announcement stating that the cleanup process of 38,000 cubic meters of contaminated soil at the airport in A Luoi District has been successfully completed.
In the year 2020, the command obtained authorization to commence a project aimed at eliminating dioxin contamination from the airport. This initiative incurred an expenditure of VND70 billion ($3 million).
A So airport, constructed by the U.S. in the 1960s, is situated approximately 100 km away from the town of Hue, which served as the imperial capital of the country.
From August 1965 to December 1970, the district experienced one of the highest levels of Agent Orange spraying conducted by the United States.
During the period of 1961 to 1971, the United States Army conducted approximately 20,000 missions and dispersed a staggering 80 million liters of hazardous chemicals across agricultural fields and woodland areas in Vietnam.
Out of the total amount, 61% consisted of Agent Orange, which contained 366 kg of dioxin. Dioxin is an extremely poisonous defoliant that has a long-lasting presence in soil, as well as at the depths of lakes and rivers, persisting for many generations.
Based on official government statistics, approximately 11 kilograms of dioxin were dispersed over A So airport through spraying.
The chemical's infiltration into the soil has been approximated at a depth of 0.7 m, resulting in contamination of approximately 35,000 cubic meters of land within the airport vicinity.
According to the Red Cross, approximately 2.1-4.8 million Vietnamese individuals were exposed to Agent Orange and other hazardous chemicals that have been associated with various illnesses such as cancer, birth defects, and chronic diseases before the conclusion of the war in April 1975.
In Thua Thien-Hue, there is a total count of 16,000 individuals, with a significant portion of 5,000 residing specifically in A Luoi District.