Viet Nam on path to achieve its net-zero emissions goal
VGP - The UNDP commends the Vietnamese Government’s admirable efforts and unwavering commitment to realizing the ambitious goal of net-zero emissions by 2050 as well as the efforts to build adaptation capacity across the country.
In her interview with VGP, UNDP Resident Representative in Viet Nam Ramla Khalidi said, Viet Nam has come a long way after the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26).
The nation has updated its nationally determined contribution (NDC) and it has also taken a careful look at the strategies and policies and updated policies to align with its net-zero commitment, including the national strategy on climate change for 2050 and the eighth National Power Development Plan (PDP8).
Both are very important concrete commitment that really reinforce the net-zero target, she emphasized.
Besides, the Prime Minister adopted the action plan for methane emissions reduction by 2030, which aims to reduce methane emissions from key sectors such as solid waste management, animal husbandry, fossil fuel consumption and cultivation.
Back in 2022, the Prime Minister also put in place the action plan on shifting to green energy and reducing carbon and methane emissions in the transportation sector that seeks to bring the transport sector and promotes clean transport across the country.
The action plan also aims to promote the use of electric vehicles, and the physical infrastructure including charging as well as help to enhance electric public transport systems.
Ramla Khalidi hailed Viet Nam reaching an agreement with the International Partners Group (IPG) on the Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP), adding that this concretized commitment puts in place a roadmap to achieve energy transition.
She also spoke highly of the Vietnamese Government and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment for pioneering JETP-related efforts over the past several months, including most recently, the preparation of a comprehensive and compelling draft JETP Resource Mobilization Plan for launch at COP28.
By ramping up efforts to transition to a green economy while ensuring the creation of decent jobs and the just aspects of the transition, Viet Nam can achieve its net-zero goal and support the country's energy transition and sustainable development objectives, she underlined.
First step in implementation of Viet Nam's JETP
Regarding expectations for Viet Nam at the COP28 which will take place in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) this weekend, Ramla Khalidi said, the UNDP very much looks forward to the launch of the highly anticipated JETP Resource Mobilization Plan at COP28.
This marks an important first step in the implementation of Viet Nam's JETP, outlining a roadmap for achieving just energy transition targets, identifying priority areas and interventions, and defining criteria for selecting investment projects, she noted.
The UNDP encourages the Vietnamese delegation to actively participate in negotiations, particularly relating to the "loss and damage fund," which was agreed to be established last year at COP27.
It is important to ensure that this fund can bring benefits to and be operationalized in Viet Nam, as one of the countries most vulnerable to climate change, to help it deal the unavoidable risks and impacts of climate change.
"We also hope that Viet Nam will engage in discussions and final efforts to define the Global Goal on Adaptation (GGA) and develop a GGA Framework", shared the UNDP official.
UNDP is anticipating Viet Nam's participation in discussions on the results of the first Global Stocktake on climate change, the synthesis report was released in September, which assesses the world's collective progress towards addressing the climate crisis, she added.
Viet Nam should prioritize just energy transition
Concerning solutions and measures Viet Nam should launch in the upcoming time to realize its net zero emissions goal by 2050, the UNDP Resident Representative said, the first and foremost Viet Nam should prioritize a just energy transition, accelerated by the implementation of its JETP.
Remarkably, the nation should focus on measures to ensure that the transition does not disproportionately affect vulnerable populations and workers in the fossil fuel industry, while promoting equitable access to new job opportunities in the renewable sector, and offering retraining and reskilling programs so the social protection measures are in place to account for any disruption, she suggested.
The role of the Government as the startup investor in essential physical infrastructure and as the guardian of an attractive regulatory environment that fosters renewables is key, stated Ramla Khalidi.
The Government can act as a start-up investor placing essential investment in physical infrastructure as well as making sure that the regulatory framework is attractive and able to attract renewable energy investments across the sector, she recommended.
Meanwhile, the nation should maintain its leadership in renewable energy sphere and that can really support it to reduce emissions to really capitalize on economic benefits and reduce its dependency on coal.
Besides, Viet Nam should not only enhance efforts to maintain and increase forest coverage, which currently represents more than 41 percent of the country's total land, but also to improve the quality of forests and preserve natural and native forests, which are critically important for biodiversity, and play a vital role in carbon sequestration and storage.
The UNDP official suggested Viet Nam continue to promote and scale up nature-based solutions for the dual benefits of strengthened resilience to climate change and emissions reduction.
UNDP Resident Representative in Viet Nam Ramla Khalidi commends the Vietnamese Government’s admirable efforts and unwavering commitment to realizing the ambitious goal of net-zero emissions by 2050
UNDP stands ready to support Viet Nam in building green, circular economy
With a view to supporting Viet Nam to achieve its net-zero emissions target, according to the UNDP Resident Representative, the agency has supported the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to update the NDC and strengthen the national Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) system. This helps in improving the greenhouse gas inventory in alignment with the requirements of the Paris Agreement.
The UNDP has supported the alignment of several new and revised policies with net zero emissions targets, focusing on the National Green Growth Strategy and the National Climate Change Strategy. This also includes assessing both international and domestic finance opportunities and enhancing private sector contributions to meet these targets.
The agency demonstrates energy efficiency innovations in buildings and building materials, generating substantial energy savings and reducing CO2 emissions and also promotes investments in energy efficiency and clean energy among businesses, especially targeting small and medium enterprises.
"We are partnering with municipal and provincial authorities to promote the transition to green transportation and develop green agriculture supply chains towards low-carbon and resilient systems", she shared.
The UNDP has had the distinct privilege of providing support to the JETP Secretariat, including for the preparation of the JETP Scheme and the Resource Mobilization Plan.
As a key next step, UNDP is working closely with key government ministries, the IPG co-leads, IPG members, and other relevant stakeholders to develop a Just Transition Framework as a guideline for JETP implementation, to ensure that the just elements and social considerations of the energy transition are well-integrated throughout the development and implementation of the Resource Mobilization Plan.
Furthermore, UNDP is actively working with the Government and businesses to accelerate the transition to a circular economy, including by supporting policy formulation, training businesses and the private sector, developing community-based waste management models, and finding innovative solutions for marine plastic pollution.
"The UNDP stands ready to support the Government of Viet Nam in its transition to a green, carbon neutral, circular and climate-resilient economy, where no one is left behind", reiterated Ramla Khalidi./.