|The Bridgeview Apartments in HCM City's District 7 builts by Nam Long Investment Corporation. — File Photo
HCM CITY (VNS) — Viet Nam, which is among the countries most vulnerable to climate change, seems set to embrace green buildings, according to analysts.
Buildings account for more than 30 percent of total energy use in fast-growing economies like Viet Nam, and so improving energy efficiency in new buildings is critical, they point out.
The International Finance Corporation has launched a green-building certification programme in Viet Nam to encourage the construction of more resource – efficient buildings.
Viet Nam is the first market in Asia to introduce EDGE (Excellence in Design for Greater Efficiencies), which enables buildings to reduce energy and water consumption by 20 percent and lower greenhouse gas emissions.
SGS Viet Nam, which is partnering with the IFC to offer EDGE certification, said over the next six years 20 percent of new construction projects, equivalent to 70,000 housing units, would be awarded EDGE certificates.
This level of penetration will help reduce emissions by 19,000 metric tonnes a year and energy use by 43,500 megawatt-hours, saving US$8 million by 2021.
The company said the country's greenhouse gas emissions from buildings were expected to top 2.8 million tonnes in 2030, up from 1.1 million tonnes in 2010.
Three years ago 18 percent of Viet Nam's electricity was generated from coal, and by 2020 this will rise to 48 percent.
The amount of clean water is reducing in Viet Nam, falling to an expected 2.83 million litres in 2025 from four million litres in 2000.
"We encourage investors, developers, and practitioners to build more environmentally friendly buildings that reduce energy consumption and mitigate climate change," Le Hoa Binh, deputy director of HCM City's Department of Construction, said.
"EDGE is an innovative, voluntary building-certification system that will help us improve the environment for our people."
Steven Du, managing director at SGS Viet Nam, said, "We are seeing strong interest from investors and developers in fulfilling the increasing demand for eco-friendly and resource-efficient buildings in Viet Nam."
The company said more than 50 percent of respondents in a survey it did are likely to seek green building certification.
Viet Nam has five buildings with EDGE certification. Following in the footsteps of the Bridgeview Apartments in HCM City's District 7 built by Nam Long Investment Corporation and the FPT Complex Da Nang built by FPT City Da Nang JSC, three others got the certificate: Tien Phat Ltd Company's Ascent Apartment and Novaland Group's Orchard Garden in HCM City, and the National Housing Organisation's First Home Premium in Binh Duong Province.
Viet Nam is a focus of IFC's EDGE programme along with a few other priority countries like Costa Rica, India, Indonesia, and South Africa. — VNS