13 Nov 20 Saigontimes Source HCMC – The Danang Business Incubator and the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Vietnam jointly launched the Danang Circular Economy Hub and kicked off the Green Avengers program on November 11, aimed at helping Danang become a greener and more sustainable city.According to Sitara Syed, UNDP deputy resident representative in Vietnam, the hub will focus on people and resources for sustainable development and circular economic practices in the central region.
"The hub will also focus on the development of current solid waste treatment systems and advocacy for green consumption. From there, we will see positive benefits for the environment and the community in the future," she added.
A linear economy usually starts with the extraction of natural resources, to manufacture, for consumption and to dispose. Such an operation leads to resources being continuously exploited and waste being discharged back into the environment at an increasing rate.
In 2016, Vietnam's amount of urban solid waste was 11.6 million tons, which is forecast to double by 2050. Although Vietnam is ranked 68th in the world in terms of area and 15th in terms of population, the amount of plastic waste in the sea of Vietnam is currently ranked fourth in the world, with more than 1.83 million tons per year.
According to Vo Duy Khuong, chairman of the Danang Startup Council, an economy that is cyclical, or a circular economy, is considered to be the best way to break the longstanding bonds between economic growth and negative environmental effects. More specifically, the circular economy helps promote economic development by reducing both resource extraction and waste in the environment.
This is why the Danang Circular Economy Hub was born. "It will support talented people with innovative projects for the environment to promote the improvement of solid waste treatment systems in Danang and central provinces and, at the same time, promote sustainable and green consumption in communities in the central region," he said.
Addressing the launch event, Nguyen Tuan Luong, head of Solutions Mapping, UNDP Accelerator Lab in Vietnam, stated, "In 2020, the world, especially Vietnam, suffered many natural disasters, the most recent being the historic flood in the central region. This urges us to act even more."
According to Luong, Danang is the economic and cultural center of the central region and as part of this project, the city will be at the center of spreading environmental protection in the region.
"The Danang Circular Economy Hub will be a platform for dedicated people, connecting projects and creating innovative solutions for the environment to cope with the current situation. In the more distant future, the hub promises to become a powerful network thanks to enthusiastic individuals who commit to join hands for the sustainable development of Danang City, thereby spreading inspiration in the central region," he added.
After the launch event, the hub immediately activated the Green Avengers program with the Bootcamp, through which members of environmental organizations who cherish ideas and projects to create social impact can connect and share social responsibilities together.
There are also training sessions to provide expert advice, leadership capabilities, cooperation promotion and funding for the members to realize their ideas together.