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Thinking Green in Vietnam

Local and international stakeholders gather at the biggest forum on sustainable energy development in Vietnam.‎‎

- H.E. Ping Kitnikone, Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam, spoke about Canada’s continued support for local sustainable energy projects.

Vietnam’s energy system is increasingly carbon-intensive, using coal, gas and petroleum products such as petrol and diesel. These fossil fuels are some of the biggest contributors to global climate change and contribute to problematic air, soil and water pollution.

There is a current increase in investment on non-renewable energies in Vietnam, with the planned construction of a number of coal-fired power plants. Fossil fuels now account for more than 50% of the country’s total energy consumption.

For Vietnam to move towards a sustainable energy system, myths and misconceptions about green energy must be debunked.

The biggest forum on sustainable energy development in Vietnam recently brought together over 1000 participants and 65 media outlets for a week to discuss these challenges and how they might be solved.

Green Support

The Canadian Embassy to Vietnam in Hanoi and the Consulate General of Canada in Ho Chi Minh City co-supported the Vietnam Renewable Energy Week. The conference was hosted in Hanoi and Can Tho, by the Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance in collaboration with the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations and the Southwest Steering Committee.

Highlighting Canada as a world leader in the production and use of energy from renewable resources, Canada hosted the seminar: ‘Think Green, Think Canada: Best Practices in Sustainable Technologies’.

“Given Canada’s firm commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement, Canadian government and businesses are shifting to a cleaner future that reduces carbon pollution while fostering innovations, strengthening our economy, and creating the jobs of the future.” – H.E. Ping Kitnikone, Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam.

Sustainable Future

The dynamic events throughout the week created a platform for local and international stakeholders to share new developments in the field of renewable energy for both Vietnam and the world.

Throughout the seminars, policy makers, green technology experts, business leaders, and social activists collaborated to identify the myths and misconceptions that surround renewable energy and how those myths might be overcome.
Participants identified some of the reasons there has been a lack of investment in renewable energy in Vietnam, including indirect subsidies to non-renewable energy, the reluctance of authorities to rapidly raise the cost of electricity, and complex regulatory barriers.

“ In the world, renewable energy has become a new mainstream as well as one of the priority sectors in Communist Party of Vietnam‘s sustainable development plan and policies. I believe that investing in renewable energy in Vietnam will increase speedily in the near future.”

– Dr. Nghiem Vu Khai, Vice President of Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations.

Participants learned about Canada’s innovations in sustainable technologies from leaders of the Canadian clean-tech companies Anaergia and Canadian Solar, which both operate in South East Asia.

“Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance believes that renewable energy development and energy efficiency are not only essential solutions in tackling with global climate change but also bringing new economic opportunities and economic benefits, increasing access to energy for the poor, reducing environmental pollution as well as contributing to ensure national energy security“

– Mrs. Nguy Thi Khanh, Executive Director of GreenID, Coordinator of Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance.

Participants also learned about a Canadian-supported $15 million Innovation for Climate Change Fund, which will help Vietnamese small and medium sized enterprises develop innovative, gender-sensitive approaches to fight climate change and build a better business environment for climate-smart practices.

The Embassy of Canada to Vietnam will continue to support technological innovation to address climate change and grow a clean economy.

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