Wednesday, February 27, 2008

In Vietnam, scientists grapple with global climate change, development

Viet Nam News: Climate change now affected food and energy as well as water resources and biodiversity across the globe, Meteorology, Hydrology, and Environment Institute director Tran Thuc warned yesterday. "The sooner we deal with climate change, the less future consequences we will have to carry," he told a national climate-change conference in Ha Noi. "How to tackle climate change and develop is the question we are trying to answer," he said.

…About 250 scientists and staff of science, technology, and natural resources and environment departments attended the conference. They discussed 16 reports and provided ideas and comments for a draft national programme to adapt to climate change.

…Chief technical adviser to the Viet Nam-Sweden Co-operation Programme for Strengthening Environmental Management and Land Administration, Per Bertilsson, described how several European countries were dealing with climate change. Denmark had created a new Climate Ministry last November, he said. Its brief was to work on climate change mitigation and adaptation and to prepare for Denmark’s hosting of the 15th world climate meeting in Copenhagen.

Sweden’s climate strategy and policy was to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 4 per cent in 2008-2010 against the 1990’s figure and 50 per cent by 2050. Sweden’s Government also worked on raising taxes on carbon dioxide and lowering taxes for workers and environmental-friendly cars, he said.

Environment Research, Education and Development Centre representative Vu Van Ninh highlighted the fact that 90 per cent of the global climate change was caused by humans and their use of fossil fuel for industrial development.

The four-day workshop has been organised by the Viet Nam Association for Conservation of Nature and the Environment with support from the Environmental Protection Department, the Meteorology and Hydrology, and Environment Institute and the Viet Nam Union of Scientific and Technological Associations. The delegates will visit Giao Thuy District in northern Nam Dinh Province, 100km south of Ha Noi, tomorrow to examine how climate change has affected the life of coastal people and what they are doing to adapt.

Photo of a parched field from Dien Bien province, from VNA/VNS, by Xuan

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