Silver Lining or Red Herring – The Impact of COVID-19 on Vietnam’s Air Quality

Authors: Nguyễn Tiến Đức*, Bùi Đức Hiển


Since 2019, the novel coronavirus outbreak has shaken the world to its core in terms of the deadly mortality and economic turbulence. On a positive note, national restriction measures to stem the spread of the virus have unexpectedly ameliorated the environment. One of the silver linings is that air pollution in many parts of the world has witnessed a substantial improvement, especially in the heavily polluted countries as in the case of Viet Nam. That being said, it does not take a rocket scientist to discern that in the absence of concrete environmental commitments and actions Viet Nam’s air pollution will remain even if the COVID-19 has ebbed. This Article suggests that the COVID-19 pandemic should serve as a wake-up call for the Vietnamese authority to embrace sturdier and more vigorous environmental laws and policies to fully address the worsening air pol- lution in the country. Thereby it also makes some recommendations for Viet Nam in this respect.

Keywords: COVID-19, Vietnam, Air quality, Environment