The Asian country of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is bordered by the People’s Republic of China, Laos, Cambodia, Gulf of Thailand, and South China Sea. The population of Vietnam is approximately 99.05 million people.
In 2022, Vietnam’s economy was ranked 35th in the world in gross domestic product (GDP). The country’s economy is dependent on the export of broadcasting equipment, telephones, integrated circuits, office machine parts, textile footwear, coconuts, Brazil nuts, cashews, fuel wood, and cement.
In 2016, Vietnam signed the Paris Climate Agreement, committing to an 8% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, compared to a business-as-usual scenario.
In 2019, the Vietnamese government initiated a program to increase electricity generation from renewable energy from 58 Billion kWh in 2015 to 186 Billion kWh by 2030.
In 2021, Vietnam’s Prime Minister announced at the United Nations Climate Change Conference that the nation would target achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2050 and cease all coal power generation by 2040.
Power Generation Capabilities
In 2021, 100% of the people in Vietnam had access to electricity. In 2022, state-owned Vietnam Electricity Group (EVN) used renewable energy (51.6%), coal (37.8%), natural gas (10.5%), and oil (0.1%)to generate electricity in Vietnam. Hydropower is the dominant type of renewable energy used to generate electricity in Vietnam.
Recent renewable energy projects in Vietnam include:
- 4,000 MW Offshore Wind Project – American utility, AES Corporation is continuing work on an offshore wind project off the coast of Binh Thuan province.
- 1,400 MW Offshore Wind Project – Irish company, Mainstream Renewable Power is continuing work on the Phu Cong Soc Trang offshore wind power project off the coast of the Sóc Trăng province.
- 831 MW Solar Project – In November 2020, the Vietnamese energy consortium, Xuan Thien Group commissioned the first phase of the Xuan Thien Ea Sup solar project, which is located in Đắk Lắk province.
- 450 MW Solar Project – In October 2020, the Vietnamese construction company, Trungnam Groupcommissioned the Trung Nam Thuan Nam solar plant, which is located in Ninh Thuan
- 90 MW Onshore Wind Project – In October 2021, Irish renewable energy developer, Mainstream Renewable Power commissioned the Thai Hoa wind project, located in Binh Thuan province.
- 75 MW Onshore Wind Project – In October 2021, Mainstream Renewable Power commissioned the Tan Thuan wind farm, located in Ca Mau province.
- 70 MW Floating Solar Projects – In December 2020, Vietnamese power company, Toji Group commissioned two 35 MW floating solar projects on two separate lakes, in Bà Rịa–Vũng Tàu province.
In 2021, Vietnam was imported of fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas) for power generation, heating, and transportation. In 2021, Vietnam imported U.S. $4.76 Billion of refined petroleum.
On 24 February 2022, Russia invaded Ukraine, prompting the European Union, United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand to place economic sanctions on Russian imports and exports. As a result, the crude oil and natural gas prices increased by over 50% from May 2021 to May 2022.
Vietnam has experienced economic growth and prosperity over the last twenty years. The nation’s future economic prosperity will require a significant reduction in imported, expensive fossil fuels.
Vietnam has significant undeveloped renewable energy resources, including offshore wind, onshore wind, solar, hydropower, and biomass. Renewable energy development is booming in Vietnam, as the nation moves from costly fossil fuels to clean, low-cost renewable energy.
Our Energy Conundrum
Jack Kerfoot is a scientist, energy expert, and author of the book FUELING AMERICA, An Insider’s Journey and articles for The Hill, one of the largest independent political news sites in the United States. He has been interviewed on over 100 radio, podcast, and television stations from New York City to Los Angeles on numerous energy related topics.