Vietnam works towards combating climate change through agricultural innovation

A series of initiatives have been designed to promote sustainable agriculture emphasising emissions reduction and climate change adaptation and mitigation, most of which can be applied in Vietnam. (Image source: Adobe Stock)

On 28 November, the Consortium of International Agricultural Research Centres (CGIAR) along with Vietnam’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) co-hosted a forum dubbed ‘Research and innovation for enhanced environmental sustainability, low-emission agriculture, climate change adaptation and mitigation’ at Pan Pacific Hotel in Hanoi

The event shared knowledge on sustainable agriculture from programmes and projects in Vietnam and other countries as part of efforts to fight climate change. Speaking at the forum, Phung Duc Tien, vice minister of Agriculture and Rural Development highlighted the challenges being faced by Vietnam’s agriculture such as natural disasters, epidemics and extreme weather conditions as a result of climate change. 

“Scientific and technological development and innovation will build a foundation for agricultural development in new rural areas in line with ecological agriculture,” said Tien. With climate change at the heart of CGIAR’s new mission of delivering science and innovation that advance the transformation of food, land and water systems in a climate crisis; a series of initiatives have been designed to promote sustainable agriculture emphasising emissions reduction and climate change adaptation and mitigation. Many of them can be applied in Vietnam.

Following are some of the proposals that were presented at the forum:

Significant reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions from food, land and water systems and increased carbon sequestration. 

More climate-resilient food, land and water systems 

Enhanced resilience and adaptive capacity for millions of households 

Billions of dollars in investment stimulated and/or informed by scientific evidence

Improving human health and well-being

Representatives from CGIAR centres have pledged to support MARD in realising Vietnam’s commitment at COP26 to reduce net emissions to zero by 2050 and addressing climate-related challenges in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The participants particularly emphasised application and replication of recent research and innovation results.

Nguyen Giang Thu, deputy director of the Department of Science, Technology and Environment at MARD, shared the country’s strategy for Science and Technology Development and Innovation in the Agriculture and Rural Development sector until 2030, with a vision to 2050. Vietnam has implemented a wide range of programmes to support the strategy, including sub-sector strategies for livestock, fisheries, forestry, irrigation, mechanisation, science and technology. 

Stephane Weise, Asia managing director of the Alliance of Biodiversity International and CIAT, on behalf of Jean Balie, CGIAR regional director for southeast Asia and the Pacific, director general, the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) emphasised that the applications and innovation programmes that CGIAR is working on will contribute to making the agricultural production system in Vietnam greener and more sustainable.