intergovernmental agreements and actors
programmes, strategies, and research
of the regional environment
in the region
actors and initiatives
intergovernmental agreements and actors
Aral Sea Rehabilitation Fund
"Having realized the necessity of pioneering and developing
of new countries in conformity with laws of nature and considering
its potentials", the Governments and peoples of the Republic
of Kazakstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan,
and the Republic of Uzbekistan, have developed the Aral Sea Programme,
a program of urgent measures for the Aral Sea. Coordinating body
for the programme is the International Fund for the Aral Sea,
IFIS, with its Executive Committee located in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
countries established the International Aral Sea Rehabilitation
Fund in 1993 and the IFIS operative body, the Executive Board, is
located in the city of Almaty. The Fund has the following objectives:
stabilization and improvement of management of the Aral Sea Basin's
environment; rehabilitation of disaster zones surrounding the Aral
Sea; improvement of management of scarce water resources in the
region; capacity building of local and state institutions on planning
and implementation of regional programs.
Economic Commission for Europe, ECE
The Environment and Human Settlements Division is part of the secretariat
of the UN ECE. It brings together economists, scientists, urban
planners and other experts, and organizes the regular intergovernmental
meetings of the Committee on Environmental Policy, the Executive
Body for the Convention
on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution, the Meeting of the
Parties to the Convention
on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International
Lakes and the Committee on Human Settlements. At these meetings,
government representatives from Europe, North America, Central Asia
and Israel address environmental and human settlements issues, such
as environmental impact assessment, air and water pollution, urban
renewal or land registration.
UN Economic and Social Commission
for Asia and the Pacific,
Resources Programme under its Environment and Natural Resources
Development Division, the UN ESCAP organizes seminars and workshops
on various issues relating to water resources, including: Water
resources assessment; Integrated water resources development and
management; Protection of water resources, water quality and aquatic
ecosystems; River basin development and management; Promotion of
infrastructure development and investment for drinking water supply
and sanitation; Water pricing and promotion of private investment
in the water sector; Water demand management, water saving and economic
use of water; and Mitigation of water-related natural disasters,
particularly flood loss reduction.
Bank for Reconstruction and Development,
The bank finances projects in three country groups (Central Europe;
Russia and Central Asia; Southern and Eastern Europe and the Caucasus)
and three sectors:
Financial Institutions; Infrastructure; and Industry and Commerce.
The infrastructure group of projects contains four issues: Municipal
and environmental infrastructure; Transport;
and energy utilities; and Energy
efficiency. The EBRD is directed by its Agreement to "promote
in the full range of its activities environmentally
sound and sustainable development", thereby being the first
international financial institution to have been given such a proactive
environmental mandate by its founders.
The European Union's financing and long-term lending institution.
The EIB is mandated to conduct operations in: the Central and Eastern
European Countries and certain Mediterranean Countries which have
applied for membership of the EU; the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership
Countries; the African, Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP), South
Africa and the OCT; Asia and Latin America; the Western Balkans.
Within the European Union, projects considered for EIB financing
must contribute to a number of set objectives, including the preservation
of the natural and urban environment.
Outside the Union, the Bank participates in implementing the Union's
development aid and cooperation policies through long-term loans
from own resources or subordinated loans and risk capital from EU
or Member States' budgetary funds.
programmes, strategies and research
Sea Recovery Plan
The World Bank, in cooperation with local governments, has devised
a comprehensive strategy to stabilize the situation, called the
Aral Sea Recovery Plan. The Plan's long term strategy includes:
. . "actions to mitigate the impacts of environmental degradation,
to develop sustainable water management strategies, and to develop
regional institutions with the capacity to implement the program."
The objective of the Plan is to improve the efficiency of water
use throughout the basin, through the introduction of modern water
management systems, through the changing of cropping patterns to
those that use less water, and through international cooperation
agreements to ensure the wise use of these finite water resources.
The water conserved and the improved economic conditions that will
be achieved will lead to stabilization of the environment, and is
an important step in the reform process underway in the Central
Project on the Aral Sea
A Dutch-funded programme to stabilize and rehabilitate the Aral
Sea Basin environment, focusing on improved management of its international
waters. As executing agency for the programme, UNDP
and its implementing partner, UNOPS,
have organized training for staff of national ministries and institutes
in areas such as water resources management, environmental impact
assessment, and integrated pest management, and has also promoted
the participation of civil society in environmental protection through
compiling NGO directories, publishing the Aral
Sea Basin Monitor, and organizing a Central Asian NGO Conference
on the Aral Sea. The UNDP
programme document for "Urgent Human Needs: Aral Seashore
Rehabilitation and Capacity Development Programme" can be downloaded
from UNDP Uzbekistan.
Vision for the Aral Sea Basin
available as a pdf
document. Regional visions form the basis for effective action,
even as elements of a global plan. As a part of the Water Vision
Consultations were held and resulted in Regional Visions. The
objective was to involve the stakeholders of each region in the
development of their own regional vision, as the building blocks
of the World Water Vision. Guided by the World Commission on Water
in the 21st Century and managed by the World Water Vision Unit hosted
by of the UNESCO Division of Water Science, the World
Water Vision "aims to develop a massive public awareness
of the risks of major water problems as a result of inaction, as
well as encourage innovative thinking on how these problems can
be tackled. It should encourage and empower people to participate
in devising and implementing solutions to these water problems.
And it should generate the political commitment to turn this increased
public awareness into effective action".
vision for the Aral Sea Basin,
Medicins Sans Frontiers
Comments and proposals to the World Water Vision Regional Vision
for the Aral Sea Basin. See also the MSF
Aral Sea Area Programme.
regional water balance of the Aral Sea Basin through GIS,
One of the programmes of FAO's Land and Water Development Division
(AGL) for the biennium 1998-1999 was the development of Land and
Water Information Systems (LWIS). The programme included activities
for the development of LWIS at global, regional, national and sub-national
levels. At global level the objectives of the programme were to
develop a capability to asses the state of land and water resources
to help predicting the potential for future agricultural production
world wide. See
more information on the water
resources of the Aral Sea Basin.
of the regional environment
of the Aral crisis
published by the International Aral Sea Rehabilitation Fund
water devastates health across the Aral Sea region, FAO
information on the Aral Sea.
of the environment of the Aral Sea Basin
environmental report on the Aral Sea Basin. The first example of
a regional report prepared for decision-makers and for the public
and which is intended for publication on the Internet. The report
is based on the system of ecological indicators, whose set and structure
reflect both peculiarities of the Central Asian region and typical
European and international experience. Purposes: data collection
and brief characteristics of modern environment state of Central
Asia improvement of access to information on environment state in
the countries of the Aral Sea basin spreading the report in the
Internet, UNEP and by CD-ROM development of regianal complex ecological
information system. The report has been prepared on the initiative
of the International Fund for the Aral Sea (IFAS) and the UN Environment
Programme (UNEP) under financial support of the Norway Trust Fund
at the World Bank. The contents has been prepared by various ministries
and committees on environment protection of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan,
Tadjikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan under the technical co-ordination
of the SIC Aral at the Kyrgyz-Russian Slavic University (Bishkek).
An article on the state of the environment.
Stat Images of the Aral Sea, 1976 and 1997
features and water issues: Aral Sea
of the Aral Sea published by NASA.
2000 State of the Environment: Europe and Central Asia
Enviroment Outlook 2000. GEO is:
a global environmental assessment process, the GEO Process,
that is cross-sectoral and participatory. It incorporates regional
views and perceptions, and builds consensus on priority issues
and actions through dialogue among policy-makers and scientists
at regional and global levels.
outputs, in printed and electronic formats, including the GEO
Report series. This series makes periodic reviews of the state
of the world's environment, and provides guidance for decision-making
processes such as the formulation of environmental policies,
action planning and resource allocation. Other outputs include
technical reports, a
web site and a publication for young people.
Projects in the region
Bank - GEF - International Waters:
and Environmental Management in the Aral Sea Basin
Project objective is to address the root causes of the overuse and
pollution of water in the Aral Sea Basin, support the sustainable
mgmt. and future development of its natural resources by formalizing,
and then implementing the first stage of, a regional strategic action
plan. Project will help 5 states sharing the Basin to (a) develop
and implement regl. and natl. water mgmt. strategies and agreements
focusing on water uses, efficiency and sharing, (b) assess water
quality problems, develop cost-effective strategies to improve water
quality, (c) expand and upgrade monitoring and regl. databases on
water quantity, dynamics and quality, enhance a regl. envntl. information
system in order to support decision-making, (d) restore certain
Aral Sea wetlands, (e) support campaign to educate the public about
the nature/extent of the problems.
actors, initiatives and resources