A seminar on supplying the press with information on climate change, co-organised by the United Nations (UN) and the Vietnamese Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology, was held in Hanoi on June 3.

The Deputy Head of the General Environmental Department Nguyen The Dong, asserted that the press plays an important role in raising public awareness of the need to reduce climate change through public announcements and information sharing.

Addressing the seminar, Andrew Speedy, chief representative of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in Vietnam, said that the country is one of the developing nations that suffers greatly from the impacts of climate change and it has actively worked with others to share information and come up with solutions to reduce greenhouse gases and adapt to climate changes.

A representative from the Vietnamese Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment, Hoang Manh Hoa, said that so far Vietnam does not release large amounts of greenhouse gases, however, it has taken on board several responsibilities such as monitoring greenhouse gases and finding ways of dealing with the problem in the future.

Hoa said that Vietnam needs more support from other countries for its initiative that calls on the 10 developed countries that emit the largest volumes of greenhouse gases to assist the developing ones who are suffering the worst impacts of climate change.

This initiative was introduced at a seminar on the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNCCC) and a meeting of those who signed up to the Kyoto protocol in Poland at the end of last year.

Hoa highlighted Vietnam’s ideas for dealing with climate change and stressed that the country is striving to become a low carbon economy.

Vietnam has suggested that developed nations should lead the world in coping with global climate change and pledge to reduce greenhouse gases to keep the rise in global temperature at below 2 degrees this century, said Hoa.

The Vietnamese government has approved a national programme to deal with climate change.

According to recent surveys, Vietnam is one of the countries that will suffer the most from climate change, especially the rise in sea levels.

The country’s average temperature has increased by  0.5-0.7 degree Celsius over the past 50 years, its rainfall has risen and natural disasters have been more and more devastating./.