NA wants more efficient climate change fight

VietNamNet Bridge – There is considerable overlap in the nation's climate change and green growth policies, and the country needs to better prioritise funding in implementing them, the National Assembly Standing Committee said on Wednesday, Oct 8.



NA, Mekong Delta, climate change fight, reforestation projects

High tide flooding inundates a section of Highway 1A in HCM City's Binh Tan District. 

A report presented by Chairman of the NA Committee on Science, Technology and Environment Phan Xuan Dung said most of the efforts to date have been focused on mitigating climate change effects and not enough attention has been paid to adaptation, which includes changing lifestyles and production methods.

The report noted that 19-38 per cent of the Mekong Delta's total area could be submerged if the sea rises by one metre. By 2030, 45 per cent of the Delta could be affected by salt intrusion, causing damage estimated at US$17 billion on the agriculture sector, it said.

The report also pointed out that the integration of climate change strategies and policies into socio-economic development plans has been weak. In addition, provinces and regions have not worked together effectively in implementing climate change policies.

Truong Thi Mai, chairperson of the NA Committee on Social Affairs, said the country must carefully calculate how much money is needed to implement climate change policies from now until 2020 and 2030.

She said that there have been many strategies and policies issued on climate change and green growth, but there has been no clarity on how these can be implemented in a harmonious manner.

Speaking at yesterday's meeting, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) Tran Hong Ha said the Government estimates that about VND17,000 billion ($790.7 million) would be needed from now until 2020 for adaptation projects including building dykes and dams. Another $1.7 billion is needed for reforestation projects, he added.

NA Vice Chairwoman Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan said climate change should be integrated into the five-year socio-economic development plan of every locality.

Long-term fight

At another meeting held yesterday with development partners as part of the Support Programme to Respond to Climate Change (SP-RCC), Deputy Prime Minister Hoang Trung Hai stressed that fighting climate change needs long-term concerted efforts from the Government, the public and development partners.

The programme, known as SP-RCC, was initiated by the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the French Agency for Development in cooperation with Viet Nam's Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment and other ministries in 2009.

Since then, international partners under the programme have mobilised about $1 billion to support the country's climate change fight. SP-RCC has also become a policy dialogue on climate change between Viet Nam and development partners.

Deputy PM Hai said Viet Nam highly appreciates the support of international partners and that the Government fully recognises the need to step up efforts to combat climate change.

Last month, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung approved the use of an official development assistance (ODA) package worth VND3 trillion ($135 million) to carry out climate change adaptation projects in 2015.

The money will be spent on mangrove afforestation and sea dyke construction in coastal areas.

Hai stressed that Viet Nam would try to offer better incentives for the private sector to get involved in such efforts.

JICA's Viet Nam representative Tsuno Motonori said there should be a co-ordinated assessment system in Viet Nam to monitor closely on-the-ground results of climate change policies and strategies.

Victoria Kwawa, World Bank Country Director for Viet Nam, called for greater efforts to attract private sector resources and identify policy constraints to private sector participation.

VNS/VNN

NA, Mekong Delta, climate change fight, reforestation projects
 
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