On November 17, 2020, the National Assembly of Vietnam enacted the Law on Environmental Protection 2020 (72/2020/QH14). This law thoroughly amends the Law on Environmental Protection 2014 and sets out requirements for a wide range of environmental issues. Articles 92 to 94 of the law make provisions for climate change, which specifically consist of greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction, ozone layer protection, and the national database on climate change.
The original text of this law can be downloaded from the following URL. This law will come into effect on January 1, 2022 (with exceptions for some articles).
A governmental decree to implement the Law on Environmental Protection 2020 is under discussion (as of July, 2021). You can see the decree on GHG regulations in the following:
Vietnam drafting new governmental decree on GHG reduction
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction (Article 92)
Definition of GHG
- The major GHG consist of carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4) and nitrous oxide (N2O)
- Gases that may cause greenhouse effects at low content include hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), nitrogen (N2) and nitrogen trifluoride (NF3)
Details of GHG emission reduction
- Conduct GHG inspection/aggregation, measurement, reporting, review and absorption according to the roadmap. GHG emission reduction methods will be appropriately established in accordance with Vietnam’s conditions and international treaties.
- Conduct GHG inspection/aggregation, measurement, reporting and review on the national government, ministries, fields and related facilities.
- Conduct audits for compliance with regulations on GHG inspection/aggregation, GHG emission reduction, cooperation system/method for GHG emission reduction, etc.
- The cooperation system/method for GHG emission reduction will be constructed and developed in accordance with Vietnam laws and international treaty to which Vietnam is a party.
- Promote systematization and development of the domestic carbon market.
List of fields and facilities where GHG must be inspected/aggregated
The prime minister establishes this list and will update it every two years based on the following items.
- Ratio of GHG emissions to the total domestic GHG emissions
- Economic and social conditions for development and circumstances
- Ratio of fuel/energy consumption per unit of products and services to the entire fuel/energy consumption of manufacturing, trading and service facilities
Responsibilities of GHG emitting facilities that appear on the list above
- Conduct GHG inspection/aggregation and construction/maintenance of GHG emission database, and submit the results of inspection/aggregation to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment every two years by December 1 of the reporting year.
- Establish and implement GHG emission reduction plan annually and incorporate the plan into programs such as quality control of facilities, clean production and environmental protection.
- For the implementation of GHG emission reduction plan, prepare a report annually on the amount of GHG emission reduction and submit it to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, provinces, provincial agencies and local People’s Committees by December 31.
Ozone layer protection (Article 93)
Definition of ozone layer protection
Ozone layer protection is an activity to respond to climate change by controlling the adverse effects of ultraviolet radiation of the sun.
Details of ozone layer protection
- Manage production, export, import, consumption and removal activities of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas in accordance with the international treaty on ozone layer protection to which Vietnam is a party.
- Conduct collection, recycling, reuse and disposal of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas contained in used equipment and devices and subject to the international treaty on ozone layer protection.
- Promote development and application of technologies, equipment and devices that use materials that do not deplete the ozone layer and are compatible with climate change issues.
- List of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment promulgates a list and guidance for use of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas that must be managed in accordance with the international treaty on ozone layer protection to which Vietnam is a party.
Responsibilities of facilities that manufacture equipment, devices and products containing substances that appear on the list above
- Construct a roadmap for replacement and removal of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas.
- Conduct collection, transportation, recycling, reuse and disposal of ozone depleting substances and greenhouse gas in accordance with the guidance of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.
- Transfer preferential ozone layer protection technology in accordance with the law on technology transfer.
The national database on climate change (Article 94)
The national database on climate change is also a new concept, and the contents of this database are as follows.
- Legal documents, policies, strategies, schemes, plans, standards, technical standards, technical requirements, professional procedures, economic and technical indicators, etc. on climate change and ozone layer protection
- Impact on resources, environment, ecosystems, livelihoods, economic and social activities
- Activities on GHG emissions and related economy and society
- Activities related to GHG emission reduction and response to climate change
- Ozone layer protection and management of ozone depleting substances
- Evaluation results on domestic climate change
- Climate change scenarios at each time
- Research and development, transfer, etc. of technologies related to climate change response and ozone layer protection
- Citizen activities for climate change response and ozone layer protection
- International cooperation activities on climate change response and ozone layer protection
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment takes responsibility for the construction, update, and guidance for use of this database, and the provincial organizations and local People’s Committees conduct data gathering and investigation on the contents above. The requirements for companies have not yet been defined in detail.
You can see more details about the Law on Environmental Protection 2020 (72/2020/QH14):
- Brief report: the Law on Environmental Protection 2020 of Vietnam (1) – Rules responding to Stockholm Convention on POPs
- Brief report: the Law on Environmental Protection 2020 of Vietnam (2) – Recycling of discarded products and packaging materials based on EPR
- Brief Report: Law on Environmental Protection 2020 of Vietnam (4) – Hazardous waste management and environmental audit
- Brief Report: Law on Environmental Protection 2020 of Vietnam (5) – Household waste control rules