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Friday, July 1, 2022

Vietnam holds high potential to reach net zero emissions in 2050

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The Vietnam Energy Outlook Report 2021 (EOR21) delivers a clear message that there is a great potential for green transition in Vietnam, which by 2050 can become a net zero-carbon economy as set out by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh during COP26.

The report, developed in close cooperation between the Danish Energy Agency, Vietnam’s Electricity and Renewable Energy Authority and the Embassy of Denmark, was launched on June 2. It shows how Vietnam can reach its target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions in 2050.

The report provides mid- to long-term perspectives on possible development paths for Vietnam’s energy system towards 2050, guides policy makers and inspires deliberations on a green transition. Particularly, the EOR21 examines a scenario for Vietnam to reach the net zero emissions by 2050 and an in-depth study on the green transport sector with higher share of electrification and a modal shift towards collective means of transport which resulted in a significant reduction of CO2 emissions and air pollution.

According to the report, the net zero emissions target can be reached in 2050 at an extra cost of only 10% compared to the baseline scenario if done right. Early actions are required to make emissions peak no later than in 2035 to avoid paying excessive costs.

In addition, renewable electricity should be the main substitute for fossil fuels. Vietnam should stop planning new coal-fired power plants and refurbish existing plants to become more flexible to better integrate renewables.

Furthermore, it is recommended to limit the expansion of gas and LNG-fired power plants.

Nuclear power is only cost-efficient if the implementation of renewable energy, particularly solar energy, is severely constrained.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Dang Hoang An said at the launch that “The EOR is developed with good data sources, using advanced models to calculate development scenarios for the power sector in particular and the energy sector in general, providing valuable information about short-term and long-term energy and power system development, in conformity with the Vietnamese Government’s direction for sustainable energy development along with environmental protection and energy security.”

According to Kristoffer Böttzauw, Director General of Danish Energy Agency, Vietnam has already come a long way with its green transition. With the Vietnam Energy Outlook Report 2021, the target of net zero emissions in 2050 can be reached in time and at the lowest cost possible to the benefit of the country, its people and, not least, the global climate.

“Vietnam is an important partner for Denmark when it comes to green economy transition. We are happy to share with our local counterparts solid and well-proven Danish solutions, knowhow and best practices gained during the past 30 years to support Vietnam in realizing its great potential for green transformation and the country’s commitment to combat climate change and achieve net-zero by 2050 in the most efficient and just way,” said Kim Højlund Christensen, Ambassador of Denmark to Vietnam.

Reaching net zero will make Vietnam independent of fuel imports. Vietnam’s import dependency is expected to increase significantly in the next decade and by 2050. By reaching net zero emissions in 2050, the long-term energy security can be substantially enhanced by greatly reduced reliance on fuel imports and lower import costs.

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