American and Vietnamese personnel have removed dioxin from an area of 5,300 square meters at Bien Hoa airport, the most contaminated spot in Vietnam.
The remediation work which began in December 2019 removed 1,134 cubic meters of dioxin-contaminated sediments from Gate 2 Lake within the airport in Dong Nai Province, an hour’s drive from HCMC.
Bien Hoa airport was the largest U.S. military base in Vietnam during the war and is now used for military training.
The remediated area will be handed over to local authorities in the next few days.
At an event held at the airport on Wednesday to announce the results of one year of work, the Air Defense Air Force Command signed an agreement with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to hand over an area of 7.2 hectares at the airbase for the latter to decontaminate over the next two years.
The two nations' governments have agreed that some 515,000 cubic meters of soil on 52.24 hectares at the airport is contaminated with dioxin, a deadly chemical used in the defoliant Agent Orange by the U.S.
Cleaning it up is expected to take at least 10 years and cost the two countries $300 million each.