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World Environment Day, 5 June 1999

In Email

Each year, on this day, people from around the world come together to celebrate World Environment Day. One of the UN's international days, World Environment Day has been wholeheartedly adopted by Viet Nam as a day on which to reflect on environmental issues of national and international importance, and look forward to how we can all take part in efforts to ensure that Viet Nam's environment will be preserved and enhanced for the generations to come. This year's World Environment Day theme "Our Earth - Our Future – Just Save It!" captures this idea that we need to take responsibility ourselves to protect our planet.

UN agencies are working with Viet Nam to do just that. From reforestation projects to environmental education and promoting cleaner industrial production, environmental protection is a priority for all UN agencies.

This year MOSTE is hosting Viet Nam's World Environment Day commemoration in Dong Thap province, in the south of the country. At this event, Ms Fernanda Guerrieri, Representative of the UN's Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) will present a joint statement on behalf of all UN agencies in Viet Nam. This statement is attached along with those from the UN Secretary-General and the Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme.



Joint Statement of the United Nations Agencies in Viet Nam
Presented on World Environment Day

5 June 1999

Ms. Fernanda Guerrieri
Country Representative
Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations

Your Excellencies, Colleagues, Ladies and Gentlemen,

On behalf of the United Nations Agencies in Viet Nam, I bring greetings and best wishes to the people of Viet Nam on this most important of days.

First and foremost, we join with you today in celebrating the progress that we have made in protecting this nation's environment. During the 1990s, environmental protection has been placed squarely on the Government's list of priorities. A national environmental strategy was prepared. A ministry responsible for environment was created. A national law on environmental protection was passed. And last year, the first major national environmental conference was held in Hanoi.

Among other things, this conference presented Decision 36/CT of the Politburo of the Communist Party to "Strengthen Environmental Protection in the Period of Industrialisation and Modernisation of the Country." Taken together, this decision and previous actions have set the stage for a renewed commitment to environmental protection in Vietnam. We see this in the Government's commitment to replant up to five million hectares of forests over the next decade. We see it in the annual "clean and green" campaigns conducted in many of Viet Nam's cities. We see it in plans to clean up the canals of Ho Chi Minh City, to rehabilitate the mangroves of the Cuu Long delta, and to protect national parks from the northern mountains to the central highlands and the Mekong delta.

Nevertheless, in spite of these efforts, we must in all humility admit our shortcomings. We must be clear on this day, and every day throughout the year, that we are not doing enough to protect and preserve the environment upon which our lives depend.

Globally, the threats are numerous. Since the onset of the industrial revolution, greenhouse gases have collected in the atmosphere at rates unparalleled in the history of the world. There is now clear evidence of global warming. Unabated, these greenhouse gases will continue to heat the atmosphere, melt the polar ice caps and cause sea levels to rise, with devastating consequences for coastal countries such as Viet Nam. The ozone layer remains under attack from common industrial chemicals used to make plastics, foams, aerosols, refrigerants and others. Our biological base is being degraded as species become extinct faster than at any time since the age of the dinosaurs. Plants and animals, birds and insects are being lost forever, sometimes before we even know they exist, and well before we understand their importance in the circle of life.

In Viet Nam, the situation is grave as well. From 1985 to 1995, 1.2 million hectares of forest were cleared as a result of expanding agriculture, commercial logging, firewood collection and in earlier years by war. This in turn has caused increased soil erosion, flooding and the loss of species. From 1985 to 1994, more than 220,000 hectares of coastal wetlands were cleared for aquaculture development. This has contributed to the destruction of breeding grounds for many marine species and has severely weakened natural coastal defences against typhoons and storm surges.

The last decade has also seen the population of Viet Nam increase by 13-14 million. Cities alone have grown by 3.5 million in this period, as urbanisation accelerates. Without adequate urban infrastructure, such rapid growth has resulted in increased water, solid waste and air pollution. The pressure of Viet Nam's population increase together with the decrease in land cultivation has also led to the over-exploitation of soil and the increased use of environmentally harmful fertilisers and pesticides. The list of threats to the environment in Vietnam is long and sobering.

Because of them, the United Nations has committed itself to helping the Government and people of Viet Nam along a path of sustainable development. Sustainable development allows us to meet our needs today while at the same time preserving the world for future generations. During the period of doi moi, the principal objectives of the government of Viet Nam have been "modernisation and industrialisation." This may be relatively easy to achieve if we are willing to sacrifice our future. But the real challenge in Viet Nam is to achieve modernisation and industrialisation while at the same time minimising the long-term costs that result from environmental degradation.

The United Nations is assisting Viet Nam in doing just that. We are supporting Vietnam to promote population programmes that will reduce the pressure on natural resources. We support reforestation programmes that focus on the needs and aspirations of local people to control their own destinies through the sustainable management of natural resources. We support environmental health programmes that deal with both the causes and effects of water pollution, especially for the rural poor. We support environmental management programmes in major cities and industrial areas, and clean production for industry.

But we are clearly not alone in this work. The size and enthusiasm of this crowd indicates growing environmental awareness in Viet Nam. At the end of the day, it will be the people of Viet Nam who are ultimately responsible for their environment. We at the United Nations are providing modest levels of assistance but full moral support to that end.

World Environment Day itself was established by the United Nations in 1972. This year's theme is very appropriate for Viet Nam: "Our Earth, Our Future—Just Save It!" It is appropriate because Viet Nam is a country that pays great respect to its ancestors. When today is in the past, and the future becomes now, we wonder what will our ancestors say of us? Will we be known as the generation that cut all the forests, ruined the beautiful coastline, and fished all of the fish out of the sea? Or will we be known as the generation that had the vision and courage to preserve our environment for future generations?

As we approach the dawn of a new millennium, let us be that generation of vision and courage. Our Earth, Our Future – Just Save It!

Thank you, and good luck to us all!

Tiêu điểm

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NGÀY THẾ GIỚI PHÒNG CHỐNG AIDS NĂM 2017

 

Ngày 1 tháng 12 năm 2017

 

Michel Sidibé
Tổng Giám đốc UNAIDS
Phó Tổng thư ký Liên Hợp Quốc

Kỷ niệm ngày Thế giới phòng chống AIDS năm nay, chúng ta cùng nhau nêu bật tầm quan trọng của quyền về sức khỏe và những thách thức mà những người sống với HIV và người có nguy cơ cao lây nhiễm HIV còn đang phải đối mặt trong việc thực hiện quyền về sức khỏe.


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Trừng phạt khắc nghiệt đối với trẻ em vi phạm pháp luật không ngăn chặn được tình hình tội phạm người chưa thành niên tiếp tục gia tăng

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Youssouf Abdel-Jelil
United Nations Resident Coordinator a.i. in Viet Nam


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Thế giới đã đạt được những bước tiến thực sự to lớn. Số người được điều trị HIV đã tăng cao hơn bao giờ hết. Kể từ năm 2010, số trẻ em bị nhiễm HIV do lây truyền từ mẹ đã giảm một nửa. Cứ mỗi năm số người tử vong do AIDS lại giảm thêm. Và những người nhiễm HIV đang ngày càng có tuổi thọ dài hơn.



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