The announcement came unexpected to many climate change stakeholders, and was backed with signatures of groundbreaking initiatives by the Government of Vietnam, such as making a commitment to stop deforestation by 2030 and phasing out coal-fueled power generation by 2040. Also, Vietnam signed the Global Methane Pledge, setting a target to cut methane emissions 30% by 2030.
In preparation for COP26, Vietnam has been working closely with its international partners and the COP26 host UK to strengthen collaboration on climate change. In May 2021, COP26 President Alok Sharma met with Vietnam´s Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh, as well as different line ministers, businesses and youth and civil society groups, to discuss Vietnam’s upcoming climate agenda. Also, UK and Italy together with UNDP organized several events with development partners in order to prepare for this COP. The project Support to Vietnam for the Implementation of the Paris Agreement had supported in the technical preparation of the Vietnamese Delegation under the auspices by the Department of Climate Change.
Vietnam’s commitment to net-zero emissions shows a strong political will to step up action regarding the economic transformation and contributing to solving the climate crisis, said Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha. Following COP26, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) and relevant line ministries and sectors will continue to propose implementation plans to concretize the PM’s statements as well as global initiatives the country has joined.
The Vietnamese Government ratified the Paris Agreement on November 3rd, 2016, in Hanoi, after the signature of the Decision No. 39/NQ-CP on October 31st 2016 by the Prime Minister. A few days earlier, on October 28th 2016, the Action Plan to implement the Paris Agreement was issued by the Prime Minister.
Please see below for the concrete initiatives that were signed by the Government of Vietnam:
- Vietnam signed the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forest and Land Use. 120 countries, representing approximately 90% of forests worldwide, pledged to end deforestation in 2030. Achieving this,will have considerable co-benefits in terms of climate change adaptation.
- Vietnam signed the Global Methane Pledge: Along with Vietnam, almost 100 nations have now set a target to cut methane emissions 30% by 2030, based on an initiative by the US. The reduction of methane emissions from fossil fuel, waste and agriculture sectors can contribute to closing the emissions gap and reduce warming in the short term.
- Vietnam signed the Global Coal to Clean Power Transition Statement: More than 40 countries have agreed to phase out their use of coal-fired power, in a boost to UK hopes of a deal to “keep 1.5C alive”, from the Cop26 climate summit.
Major coal-using countries, including Canada, Poland, South Korea, Ukraine, Indonesia and Vietnam, will phase out their use of coal for electricity generation, with the bigger economies doing so in the 2030s, and smaller economies (as Vietnam) doing so in the 2040s. However, some of the world’s biggest coal-dependent economies, including Australia, China, India and the US were missing from the deal, and experts and campaigners told the Guardian the phase-out deadlines countries signed up to were much too late.
- The Global Action Agenda on Transforming Agricultural Innovation is the outcome of the Transforming Agriculture Innovation Systems for People, Nature and Climate which was launched at the Climate Adaptation Summit in January 21. This campaign co-led by FCDO and the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture, and Food Security (CCAFS) is supported by Vietnam, among others.
- The Policy Dialogue on Accelerating Transition to Sustainable Agriculture was co-convened by the UK as in-coming COP Presidency and by the World Bank. Its intent was to catalyse efforts to deliver the global transformation in agriculture and land use needed to tackle climate change, to produce nutritious food, to support jobs and economic growth, and to protect our planet. Launched in April 2021, 34 countries participated in the period up to COP26 either at Ministerial and, or senior technical levels, mainly through Ministries of Agriculture. Vietnam was among these 34 countries.