VUSTA commented on the Draft Circular on Response to Climate Change
31/08/2021 2:43 SA 106 lượt xem
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The 2020 Law on Environmental Protection was approved by the 14th National Assembly at its 10th session and will take effect since January 1, 2022 with the aim at timely institutionalizing the CPV’s guidelines and directives and the State's policies on reforming Vietnam's environmental institutions in harmony with environmental protection legislation in the world, meeting the requirements of international integration. The ultimately set forth goal is to improve the environmental quality, protect citizens’ health, make ecological balance, conserve biodiversity and develop the sustainable economy.

Assoc.Prof.Dr. Phung Chi Sy - Vice Chairman of Vietnam Association for Conservation of Nature and Environment (collected photo)

Currently, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is coordinating with the relevant administrative authorities and scientists to develop a draft Decree regulating greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction and protection of the ozone layer and posted it on the Portal for consultation with relevant parties and interested organizations and individuals. At the same time, the Ministry is drafting a Circular detailing the implementation of a number of articles of the Law on Environmental Protection on response to climate change. This is the key step to concretize a number of provisions of the Law on Environmental Protection in 2020, minimizing the difficulties and inadequacies in the implementation process.

This draft Circular details Point g, Clause 2, Article 27; Point c, Clause 3, Article 90; Point c, Clause 4, Article 91; Point b, Clause 3 and Clause 6, Article 92 of the Law on Environmental Protection in 2020 and a number of articles and clauses of the Decree stipulating mitigation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and protection of the ozone layer (also being finalized for submission for the Government to issue). The Circular consists of 5 chapters, 24 articles: General provisions (Chapter I, 03 Articles); Assessment of impacts of climate change (Chapter II, 6 Articles), Appraisal of results of greenhouse gas inventory and mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions for fields and establishments required to conduct GHG inventory (Chapter III, 7 Articles); List and guidance on the use of substances that deplete the ozone layer and control greenhouse gases (Chapter IV, 06 Articles); Terms of implementation (Chapter V, 02 Articles). At the end of the draft Circular, there are 3 Appendixes: Climate change impact assessment (Appendix I includes Appendices I.1, 1.2); Appraisal of results of greenhouse gas inventory and mitigation of GHG emission for the fields and establishments required to carry out greenhouse gas inventory (Appendix II includes Appendices II.1 to II.4); List and guidance on the use of substances that deplete the ozone layer and control greenhouse gases (Appendix III includes appendices III.1 to III.6).

According to the comments on the Draft Circular of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment detailing the implementation of a number of articles of the Law on Environmental Protection on response to climate change of Assoc. Prof. Dr. Phung Chi Sy - Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Association for Conservation of Nature and Environment, he said that, in Article 6, because Clause 8, Article 3 defines "Evaluation of impacts of climate change is the determination of positive or negative impacts; determination of vulnerabilities, risks, and losses and damages caused by climate change to natural, economic and social systems in a defined space and time”, so it is necessary to supplement the information and data serving the assessment of impacts of climate change related to exposure, sensitivity, and adaptability for vulnerability identification; supplementing information on hazards, hazard probability, loss and damage caused by climate change to natural, economic and social systems in the past to serve the retrospective risk assessment of climate change.

Sy also added, in Point a, Clause 5, Article 8: It is necessary to arrange the methods for determining the impact of climate change, ranging from qualitative to quantitative, from simple to complex. Adding to the group of qualitative methods: Checklist, Network; Adding to the group of quantitative methods: Rapid assessment.

In Point b, Clause 5, Article 8, as commented in Article 3 above, due to the risk of loss and damage, the method of risk determination should be changed to the same group of methods of loss and damage determination at Point c, Clause 5, which would be more reasonable. A distinction should be made between methods of determining retrospective risk and methods of predicting risk. Consider and add the missing methods as commented at Point a, Clause 5 to the methods presented at Points b, c, Clause 5.

Point a, Clause 8, Article 8, should clarify what "loss and damage indicator" is determined on the basis of which "indications", "parameters", and also, specify the method of determining the "indications", that "parameters". For example, the “loss and damage indicator” is determined on the basis of the “economic loss and damage indicator”, “loss and damage indicator to the natural system”, “loss and damage indicator to natural systems”, “social loss and damage indicator”. For example, the “economic loss and damage indicator” is determined based on the “loss and damage parameters” for production, commerce, services, infrastructure, housings and properties, income, employment and other parameters. The “loss and damage indicator to natural systems” is determined based on the “parameters” of land loss due to flooding, landslides, salinization, loss of biodiversity, and decline in ecosystem services. The “Social Loss and Damage Indicator” is determined based on the “parameters” of loss of life, health, traditional knowledge, cultural heritage and other parameters.

In addition, according to Sy, in Appendix I.1, review "Guidelines for selection and identification of indicators reflecting vulnerability and risks from climate change" because there is some confusion and error as commented on Article 3 and Article 8 above. It is necessary to define very clearly between the three concepts of "parameter", "indication", "indicator", thereby correcting Appendix I.1 accordingly.

The example of the impact and risk screening matrix in Table 1 is not accurate. If each risk assessment parameter (4 parameters: storm severity, precipitation change, temperature change, rising sea level) has a value from 1 (lowest risk) to 5 (highest risk), then the total score of these 4 parameters will range from 4 to 20 points. If the risk level is divided into 3 levels: low (for example, total score from 4 to 9), medium (for example, total score from 10 to 15), high (for example, total score from 16 to 20), the risk to livestock (total score of 8) is low; the risk to crops (total score of 13) is medium; the risk to irrigation (total score of 9) is low; risk to fisheries (total score of 11) is medium; The risk to salt karma (total score is 10) is medium. Furthermore, it is also necessary to guide the method of scoring each parameter (when to give points 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). The division of risk levels into 3 levels (low, medium, high) in Table 1 also contradicts Point g, Clause 6, Article 8 above when decentralizing vulnerability, risk (indicators in range from 0 to 1) to 5 levels: Vulnerability, very low risk (vulnerability indicator, risk from 0 to 0.2); Vulnerability, low risk (vulnerability indicator, risk from above 0.2 to 0.4); Vulnerability, medium risk (vulnerability indicator, risk from above 0.4 to 0.6); Vulnerability, high risk (vulnerability indicator, risk from above 0.6 to 0.8); Vulnerability, very high risk (vulnerability indicator, risk from above 0.8 to 1.0).

It is recommended to write the instructions for calculating the vulnerability and risk indicator in the form of a process consisting of steps, each step should not be written too rambling, the theory later is very difficult to apply in practice. Specific guidance is needed on methods of collecting, measuring, and calculating parameters to calculate indications (or component indicators) of exposure, sensitivity, adaptability, and ultimately, the vulnerability indicator calculation.

It is recommended to separate the instructions for calculating the vulnerability indicator and the risk indicator into two separate sections because as above presented risk and vulnerability as two different contents, risk and vulnerability assessment parameters are different, therefore, the calculation method is also different. In order to assess risks, it is necessary to identify hazard assessment parameters, loss and damage assessment parameters. If the risk and vulnerability assessment indicators are included in tables 3, 4, it will cause confusion between the two indicators and make the assessment process difficult.

Author: Reporter.