Attaining net zero for Viet Nam requires a ramp up of non-hydro power
Wind and solar uptake has recently gained momentum in Viet Nam, despite not yet being sufficient to push coal out of the generation mix. Indeed, the share of coal power generation increased steadily in the country from 33% in 2015 to 47% in 2021, but has since dipped to 38% in 2022.
Viet Nam is pushing ahead with its clean power transition, where coal remains the largest energy source but the share of coal power generation has started falling, although not yet to the extent considered essential for limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees.
In May 2023, Viet Nam approved its long-awaited power development plan, pledging to boost renewables by the end of the decade and develop no new coal power plants after 2030. The coal-to-clean electricity transition is likely to accelerate as the country seeks to phase out coal power in the 2040s, in an effort to attain net zero emissions by the mid-century. Given the substantial environmental and social costs of domestic hydro power development, this will mean a significant ramp up of non-hydro capacity expansion to keep pace with rising demand while pushing coal out of the generation mix.
Last updated: May 2023