Coal dropped from Vietnam’s future energy plans
Bangkok, 27 January 2016 - Vietnam will effectively shelve the equivalent of 70 large coal power plants following an
announcement from the Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung that the country would drop all further coal-fired power plant
projects and move towards cleaner energy.
“This huge win follows tireless work from environmental advocates highlighting the health and environmental impacts of
the country’s coal expansion plans,” said Arif Fiyanto, Greenpeace Southeast Asia Coal Campaigner.
“This is one of the biggest victories for environmental and climate advocates in Vietnam, and a crucial step for
Southeast Asia where development plans have tended to rely heavily on coal,” said Arif. “Vietnam’s decision is the Paris
Agreement in action, and with a clear steer towards renewable energy it sets the benchmark for countries across the
region to follow.”
Before the announcement, Vietnam had the biggest plans for coal-fired power plants in Southeast Asia with 44 gigawatts
planned (the equivalent of 70 large coal plants) on top of 17 gigawatts under construction. Some of the planned coal
projects will be converted to gas and measures will be made to create better investment conditions for wind and solar.
“Vietnam is playing its part in kicking our global addiction to coal. With Indian coal imports falling and China
implementing a three-year ban on new coal mines, there is a definite sense that change is in the air in Asia,” said
“Driven by concerns from people more aware than ever of the health and environmental impacts of fossil fuels, we are on
the cusp of an energy revolution. But it needs to move faster and policy announcement such as this are just the first
Greenpeace Southeast Asia last year worked with environmental groups, such as the Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance
(VSEA), and researchers from Harvard University, to highlight the health impacts of the planned coal expansion. The
groundbreaking study used modelling to show how existing coal plants in Vietnam cause an estimated 4,300 premature
deaths every year, which would have risen to 25,000 premature deaths per year if the coal expansion plans were approved.
Note to editors:
Vietnam Sustainable Energy Alliance (VSEA) established in 2012, including members of Vietnamese and international NGOs
cooperating to strengthen sustainable energy development in Vietnam and the Mekong region by promoting energy policy
sustainability, energy conservation and renewable energy solutions, using local energy plan as a key strategy. VSEA
organised the Coal and Coal Power: The Unknowns’ conference in Hanoi (29 September 2015)