The Central Asian international ecological forum is held in Turkmenistan

In the Turkmen capital the Central Asian international ecological forum «Initiative for cooperation in the field of environmental protection and sustainable development in Central Asia» dated to World Environment Day. A three-day forum is devoted to climate change and rational use of water and has a value in the context of sustainable development of Central Asia.

For the first time the forum is organised by the State Committee for Environmental Protection and Land Resources of Turkmenistan and the Central Asian Regional Ecological Centre, a non-governmental organisation founded by Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, Development Program of the United Nations and the European Commission.

Activity of the CAREC is concentrated to realisation of the Central Asian initiative on sustainable development (CAI) which has been put forward by the countries of the region and (republic of South Africa) is supported by participants of the World Summit of the United Nations on sustainable development, which took place in 2002 in Johannesburg. The initiative is aimed at strengthening of mechanisms of cooperation, establishment of partner relations between governments, international and public organisations, private business in the field of preservation of environment, water resources management, steady power and others. The initiative is realised by means of economic, social and ecological programs and projects of national, regional and international level.

The Central Asian international ecological forum which is planned to be held serially in each of the countries-founders of CAREC is urged to become a platform for multilateral exchange of opinions on a spectrum of issues of sustainable development and to promote intensification of partnership.

The meeting in Ashgabat has united heads and leading experts of profile ministries and departments, scientific and educational centres, active workers-ecologists from 13 countries - Belgium, Hungary, Germany, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, the USA, Czech, Switzerland, and Japan.

In the forum, the official opening ceremony of which took place in the conference hall of the capital hotel "Yildyz", employees of diplomatic representatives accredited to our country and missions, local and foreign mass-media were also invited.

Among participants - representatives of UNDP, the Regional Centre of the United Nations for Preventive Diplomacy in Central Asia, United Nations Environment Program, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, Secretaries of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), the European Union, the European Economic Commission of the United Nations, OSCE, the World Bank, the International Fund of the Aral sea, the Society of International Cooperation of Germany (GIZ), the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, the Royal Society for Protection of Birds, the Michael Succow Foundation, Stockholm International Water Institute and others.

Heads of delegations of the states of Central Asia who spoke at the forum, focused attention on the theme of realisation of the Plan of Action for integration of goals of sustainable development into conditions of countries of the region and priorities of national nature protection strategy.

The business part of the forum was continued by the plenary session under the title «Challenges and opportunities for ecological cooperation in the field of climate change and water resources in Central Asia». As marked, global climatic changes become one of the most serious challenges to mankind and it dictates necessity of acceptance of preventive measures for the countries of the regions which are located in arid zones and have already faced the Aral crisis and its consequences.

It was told of necessity of the systematic measures directed to strengthening of potential of countries of Central Asia in the field of adaptation to climate change. The issues connected with it intertwine with rational use of water; therefore the forum program unites water and ecological subjects. Formation of "mechanisms for clean development» in oil and gas sector, electric power industry, chemical industry, transport and other branches, allowing to reduce emissions of hotbed gases, has a great value.

The program of the first day of the forum has included the session «Harmonization of legal basis of countries of Central Asia in the field of water cooperation and ecology».

Tomorrow participants of the Central Asian international ecological forum will continue an exchange of opinions on cooperation priorities in the sphere of preservation of environment and sustainable development, joint management of water resources, adaptations to global climate changes. A special attention will be given to the Agenda of 2030 and the Parisian Agreement on climate change signed by 175 states, including, Central Asia.

It is planned to hold sessions on the third day of the forum «Possibilities for decrease in climatic risks in Central Asia», «Green investments as sustainable development possibility», «On the path for intensification of actions for adaptation to climate change in mountain regions of Central Asia» and others. A round table talk, the role of mass media in highlighting ecological issues of the region, as well as a separate meeting of heads of international departments of nature protection and water economy ministries and departments of countries of Central Asia were also planned.