In-depth

Alt text for image
"Under shade of cajuput forest", the second prize photo, taken by Huynh Kim Hai at U Minh national park in the southern most province of Ca Mau

Through policy advice and technical assistance to national and sub-national institutions, UNDP’s support is focused in five main areas of work: climate change and green growth, energy efficiency, REDD+, biodiversity conservation and environmental management as well as disaster risk reduction.

Focusing on Climate Change and Green Growth, UNDP has been instrumental in the development and implementation of key national policies and programmes for sustainable development, including the Climate Change Strategy (2011), National Target Programme to Respond to Climate Change, and the Party’s Resolution on Climate Change, Natural Resources and Environmental Protection (2013).  UNDP also enabled the production of Viet Nam’s climate change scenarios (2011).

UNDP was a strong advocate and a provider of substantial technical support for participation in Rio+20 and the formulation of the Viet Nam Green Growth Strategy (2012), which included targets to reduce the intensity of greenhouse gas emissions by 8-10 per cent from 2010’s level by 2020 and reduce energy consumption per unit of GDP by 1-1.5 per cent, per year.

In connection with green growth development, UNDP is backing the development of Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) with the private sector, workers and communities. NAMAs will be piloted in various industrial sectors until 2016.

In the Energy Efficiency field, UNDP champions capacity building, new policies and transformative markets to drive energy efficiency and clean energy development. UNDP has helped develop an energy standards and labeling framework in Viet Nam to set energy benchmarks for appliances and reduce household energy use, while technology transfer efforts have been supported to promote energy efficiency technologies and service providers.

REDD+ has emerged as an exciting initiative to reduce carbon emissions from deforestation and forest degradation. UNDP has been implementing the UN-REDD Viet Nam Phase I Programme with FAO and UNEP since 2009, which resulted in adoption of the National REDD+ Action Programme. UN-REDD helps the Government, local communities, the private sector and civil society plan for the sustainable management of forests and benefit sharing as an essential part of mitigating climate change. This work translated into the approval of the US$30 million UN-REDD Viet Nam Phase II Programme, implemented from mid-2013, that will engage with six pilot provinces until 2015 to test how incentives can increase forest carbon stocks.

To protect Viet Nam’s rich, yet under threat Biodiversity of global significance, UNDP played key roles in the development of the Biodiversity Law (2008) and is now strengthening institutional capacities to breakdown policy and institutional barriers blocking the effective management of protected areas and provision of sustainable finance. Work is underway at three national park sites to explore management and revenue stream models, while the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan is being revised.

Environmental protection momentum is also gathering pace with UNDP working closely with the National Assembly to support the revision of the Law on Environmental Protection to introduce new elements such as climate change and stakeholders’ responsibilities.  

Viet Nam has suffered from increased levels of pollution due to limited chemical management strategies and action plans, which has been exacerbated by accelerated industrialization and industrial sectors’ poor awareness of risk and safety procedures. UNDP Viet Nam is now working with the Government to provide technical advice on building a database to implement the second component of the National Target Programme on Pollution Management and Environmental Improvement (NTP-PMEI), focusing on more than 200 Persistent Organic Pollutant (POP) waste hotspots in Viet Nam. Meanwhile, UNDP is strengthening the Government’s capacity to increase POPs waste treatment, while addressing institutional capacity gaps to develop chemical management plans in the context of the Stockholm Convention.

As a country vulnerable to natural hazards such as floods and tropical storms, Viet Nam is increasing its Disaster Risk Management (DRM) capacity to reduce the human and economic costs of such calamities.

UNDP was one of the first international agencies to identify this need in the early 1990s and the number of deaths caused by disasters has reduced by 8 per cent during 2008-2012 compared to the previous five years. However, a great percentage of the population is still exposed to natural hazards. To meet this challenge, a strong partnership has been built with Government to reinforce DRM institutional capacity and formulate policies for change. A key endeavour for UNDP is its work with the National Assembly for the plan of the Law on Disaster Risk Management (2013), which will embed the Hyogo Framework for Action and the ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response.

Featured Publications
Recognise the strength of women and girls in reducing disaster risks!

This book stresses the potential and strength of an often untapped or unrecognized resource: women and girls in Viet Nam. Not only do they comprise almost half of the country’s population, they also play crucially important roles in the household, in the rural and urban economies and in society as a whole

Fossil fuel fiscal policies and greenhouse gas emissions in Viet Nam

Subsidies and taxes in Viet Nam’s energy sector, and their effects on economic development and income distribution in the context of responding to climate change.

Some good sustainable development practices

Report at the UN Conference on sustainable development (RIO+20) This report aims to bring together and assess some of good sustainable development practices implemented in Viet Nam recently, and to draw out lessons and make recommendations for further implementation of these models

View More Publications