By the end of this century, two to 10 additional heat waves triggered by climate change will hit Viet Nam every year, with the south and central highlands regions suffering the most, according to a report released yesterday in Ha Noi by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment.
The Viet Nam Special Report on Managing the Risks of Extreme Events and Disasters to Advance Climate Change Adaptation (SREX Viet Nam) is the first major collaborative scientific analysis of climate change by Vietnamese researchers.
Compiled over more than two years by a group of 40 scientists, policy-makers and experts, the report assesses extreme weather and its impacts on the natural environment, socio-economic and sustainable development of the country. It offered a foundation for authorised agencies to formulate climate change policies, said co-editor-in-chief Tran Thuc.
Each heat wave typically lasts at least three days with daily temperatures over 38 degrees Celsius. There were 18 heat waves in 2012.
Scientists also predicted that droughts and strong storms would become more frequent.
Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Rajendra Kumar Pachauri said that the report showed excellent efforts from Vietnamese scientists, although it included some information gaps.
Given that Viet Nam was severely affected by climate extremes, the right policies, capacity and knowledge were needed in order to take measures that reduced climate risks, United Nations Resident Co-ordinator Pratibha Mehta said. Without that, sustainable development was not possible in Viet Nam.
The ministry also organised a launch ceremony yesterday for the establishment of the Viet Nam Panel on Climate Change.
Speaking at the ceremony, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha said that the agency would focus on Government policies related to climate change and suited to the nation's socio-economic development as well as the rapid changes in the world.