The year 2020 marks a major turning point in the energy industry of Vietnam, with clean energy strengthening its solid position and establishing itself as a profitable sector with significant potential for development, while coal-fired thermal power no longer holding the position as a favoured energy source in the country.
A solar power plant in An Giang
The information was shared in the Vietnam Energy Update Report 2020 recently released by the Centre of Media and Development Initiatives (MDI) under the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations.
The report examines key features of the development of Vietnam’s energy sector from August 2019 to August 2020, with a focus on major power generation sources.
According to the report, clean energy - including solar and wind - is now making an increasingly important contribution to the national power system, and has become a priority in the country's energy development orientation. Gas thermal power, especially imported liquefied natural gas (LNG), is also a sector with potential, with the construction of the first two gas import terminals underway.
It also pointed out that at least six provinces across the country, including Quang Ninh - the country’s biggest coal mine, have proposed to have coal-fired power projects cancelled due to concerns about environmental pollution. Other localities such as Bac Lieu, Long An, Thua Thien-Hue, Ha Tinh and Tien Giang plan to replace planned coal-fired power plants with projects using imported LNG.
Vietnam has increased its nationally determined contribution (NDC) to join hands with the international community in efforts to reduce the impact of climate change.
Laurence Tubiana, CEO of the European Climate Foundation (ECF), former France’s Climate Change Ambassador and Special Representative for COP21, said that “over the past year, Vietnam has begun to mark itself out as a clean energy success story. Though there is some distance to go, its shift away from coal and rapid uptake of renewables make it one of the leaders in Southeast Asia, and an example to other nations looking to transition”.
“And Vietnam has much to gain, not just in terms of a safer climate and cleaner air, but in jobs and investment. Around the world, renewables are proving to be the smarter, cheaper option and it is inspiring to see Vietnam beginning to seize the opportunity,” she stated.