EVN leverages international expertise to improve HSE standards

June 21, 2024 | 08:00
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Vietnam Electricity is leveraging international experts to elevate Health, Safety, and Environmental standards in its hydropower expansion.

The Consortium Tractebel Engineering France, Bureau Veritas Vietnam, and Société Hydro-Electrique du Midi was selected to assist Vietnam Electricity (EVN) in improving the Health, Safety, and Environment (HSE) Management System for the construction and operation of its hydropower plants.

A panel of three experts conducts quarterly audits at the Ialy Hydropower Plant expansion construction site, ensuring adherence to international standards and safeguarding the wellbeing of workers and local communities.

The Ialy expansion is a significant infrastructure project that aims to increase the load capacity for the Southern region, reduce annual fuel costs, minimise water waste, and reduce dependence on fossil fuels. With funding of €74.7 million ($80.2 million) from the French Development Agency (AFD) and a €2 million ($2.15 million) grant from the EU for technical assistance, this endeavour is poised to transform the region's energy landscape.

The areas of a construction site that come under inspection include tunnels, water-intake systems, powerhouses, batching plants, explosives storage yards, workshops, and worker camps. Stringent safety measures, such as equipment inspections and hazard assessments, mitigate risks associated with hazardous working conditions.

Regular assessments of tunnel environments monitor ventilation, lighting, and atmospheric quality, enhancing worker safety in confined spaces. Additionally, emergency response protocols and access to medical facilities underscore the gradual implementation of safety measures by EVN to ensure worker safety and minimise accidents.

EVN leverages international expertise to improve HSE standards

The rights and wellbeing of workers are upheld through stringent oversight of working hours, access to insurance, and the provision of grievance mechanisms. Living conditions in camps undergo regular scrutiny, ensuring compliance with standards to promote worker welfare and dignity.

Environmental preservation is a paramount imperative, with auditors advocating for pollution mitigation and habitat preservation. Waste burning is strictly prohibited, while recycling initiatives are encouraged to minimise environmental impact.

Additionally, community concerns are addressed through proactive engagement and transparent communication. Public meetings provide platforms for stakeholder dialogue and decision-making participation. Infrastructure enhancements, such as access roads, demonstrate a commitment to minimising disruptions and facilitating local farmer access. Compensation mechanisms adhere to Vietnamese and international standards, fostering trust and transparency in grievance resolution processes.

The collaborative efforts among the panel of experts, the management team, contractors, and EVN's HSE personnel, demonstrate a steadfast commitment to excellence and cooperation in advancing HSE standards. By integrating social and environmental considerations into the development process, stakeholders pave the way for a sustainable energy future in Vietnam.

Furthermore, the involvement of the EU and AFD underscores a broader commitment to advancing sustainable practices here. By supporting initiatives such as these, organisations are contributing to a transformative shift towards a safer, greener, and more sustainable energy future for Vietnam.

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By Vy Bui

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