HANOI, November 15, 2022 – Today, the United States Mission to Vietnam, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE), launched a new USAID project to reduce environmental pollution through Vietnamese-led collective action. The new project, Reducing Pollution, is a five-year, $11.3 million effort implemented by USAID partner Winrock International, in close cooperation with MONRE. Joining the launch ceremony were MONRE Minister Tran Hong Ha, Deputy Chief of Mission Melissa Bishop, USAID/Vietnam Mission Director Aler Grubbs, and Winrock International President and CEO Rodney Ferguson.
“The launch of USAID’s Reducing Pollution project is an important part of the collaboration between USAID and MONRE. We signed an MOU in January 2022 to improve environmental outcomes, and this Reducing Pollution project is a great first milestone. Our joint efforts will raise awareness and promote actions led by Vietnamese to reduce environmental pollution and support Vietnam in achieving its climate change goals,” said Aler Grubbs, USAID/Vietnam Mission Director.
Vietnam faces a series of environmental pollution challenges largely spurred by agriculture, transportation, and industrial production. Public interest in environmental quality has steadily increased, along with calls for action to improve the environment. The Government of Vietnam released National Action Plans related to air quality, water conservation, and plastic waste pollution, demonstrating the country’s commitment to ensuring broad cooperation to address environmental pollution challenges.
The Reducing Pollution project will address multiple sources of environmental pollution. The project will bring together different people to collaborate, identify ways to solve a shared problem, and take action. The project will work closely with MONRE’s Vietnam Environment Administration, and the project will demonstrate clear connections between environmental benefits and other social benefits, including public health, employment, and sustainable economic growth.
To foster Vietnamese leadership in addressing environmental pollution, the project will provide grants to a series of local entities to serve as the “backbone” for each collective impact initiative.
These backbone organizations will serve as the local leaders for each initiative, including by gaining public support, advancing policy, and leveraging additional funding.
Through a broad consultative process with authorized government agencies, local communities, and environmental experts, the Reducing Pollution project has identified six priority collective impact initiatives that reflect strong political will, community leadership, and engagement from private sector partners to address environmental pollution challenges. These are:
● Pioneering Company, Community and Consumer Responsibility in Plastic Waste Reduction in Vietnam;
● Developing Circular Economy Model in Medical Plastic Waste Management;
● Reducing Air Pollution from Road Transportation;
● Reducing Air Pollution from Open Burning;
● Reducing Pollution in Craft Villages; and
● Developing a Transparent Environmental Data Disclosure Platform.
“We highly appreciate the U.S. Embassy and Winrock International in promoting the procedures for the signing of the Pollution Reduction Project. The project was built to support initiatives on reducing pollution to provide direction and facilitate capacity strengthening for local organizations and networks in Vietnam for collectively solving environmental concerns through a collective impact approach. The project will also evaluate environmental impact at the regional and global levels, paying particular attention to the issues of the energy transition, plastic pollution, increasing recycling, waste reuse, and raising public awareness about reducing environmental pollution in the future. This is one of USAID’s projects collaborating with the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment that aims to address multi-sector pollution and mobilize the participation of different stakeholders for environmental protection,” said MONRE Minister Tran Hong Ha at the launch event. The Minister also expressed his strong belief in the project success, especially in the context of implementing the Law on Environmental Protection 2020. He called the organizations, experts, scientists and related agencies in facilitating the project implementation in compliance with Vietnamese regulations.
The United States and Vietnam are preparing to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of their Comprehensive Partnership. The USAID Reducing Pollution project is yet another example of how the United States and Vietnam work strategically together to address the world’s most pressing issues, like climate.
In January 2022, USAID and MONRE formalized their partnership on addressing the complex challenges of climate change and environmental pollution through the signing of their first-ever Memorandum of Understanding. To learn more, visit: https://www.usaid.gov/vietnam/press-releases/jan-28-2022-usaid-and-vietnam-ministry-natural-resources-mou
Over the past five years, USAID has been working closely with Vietnam to foster collective action by local actors—including the Government of Vietnam, private sector, local organizations, and citizens—to raise awareness of the causes and effects of environmental pollution, and to increase knowledge of effective strategies for reducing environmental pollution. For more information, including on Reducing Pollution, please visit: https://www.usaid.gov/vietnam/addressing-environmental-pollution