Vietnam knuckles down on climate-change

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday chaired the first working session of the National Committee on Climate Change, two days after its official establishment.

Dung said response to climate change and sea level rise was a matter of life or death to the nation’s sustainable development, and that Viet Nam had to start taking drastic measures right away or it would be too late.

He said it was not until now that Viet Nam realised the vital importance of responding to climate change. Since 2008, Viet Nam has constructed a National Target Programme to respond to climate change.

However, the efficiency has been low due to limited resources and weak co-operation between relevant stakeholders.

The National Committee on Climate Change hopes to help address this.

One of the committee’s tasks is to advise and consult the Government and Prime Minister on important matters relating to inter-agency responsibilities with respect to climate change.

Its key functions include to design national climate change strategies and programmes, as well as monitor and co-ordinate the implementation of these strategies.

Dung asked the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to quickly finalise the principles governing its work and its working agenda.

He also pushed the ministry to finish compiling the National Action Plan to respond to climate change, make it available to the public and put it into practice.

The draft identified top priorities for the decade: climate change adaptation, increasing preparedness for natural calamities and sea level rise, ensuring food and water security and consolidating dyke embankment.

In order to fulfil these goals, Viet Nam should improve the management capacity of work related to climate change and mobilise resources from different actors in the economy.

Scientific research in support of national climate change policy and the strengthening of international co-operation were to be undertaken.

The action plan was scheduled to be submitted to the Prime Minister during this quarter.

As part of the Support Programme in response to the climate change, the inter-sectoral committee and independent consultants reviewed nearly 240 climate change proposals submitted by local authorities and selected 19 projects that touched on urgent matters.

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