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Development Account Projects

Rational and efficient use of energy and water resources in Central Asia

Background:

Central Asia faces the problems of high water consumption, inefficient water delivery, the pollution of waters causes transboundary threats to human health, and wasteful consumption of energy.

The UN, through this project, plays a catalytic and facilitating role in developing technical and negotiating capabilities in the five participating countries, with the view to establishing a framework of cooperation for sharing and more rational use of water and energy resources. The UN experience in the implementation of environmental conventions (on air, water, industrial accidents and environmental impact assessment), its capacities for training in efficient management of water and energy in industry, and its experience in establishing energy efficiency demonstration zones.

Objective:

To promote the rational and efficient use of energy and water resources in the economies of Central Asia, thereby implementing the Energy Charter Treaty of 1991 and the Energy Charter Protocol on Energy Efficiency and Related Environmental Aspects of 1994, to which all five Central Asian countries are signatories.

Expected accomplishments:

  • Increase in skills of national decision makers and experts in rational and efficient use of energy and water resources;
  • Ability of member States to engage in cooperative and negotiated approaches to solving transboundary issues.

Effects and Impact:

The objective was pursued through a set of activities aimed at strengthening skills of national decision makers and experts in rational and efficient use of energy and water resources, thus enhancing the ability of Member States to engage in cooperative and negotiated approaches to solving transboundary issues. A strategy for rational and efficient energy and water utilization, developed in the context of the project, resulted in the creation of a bilateral commission on the rivers Chu and Talas between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Subsequently, statutes and other basic materials to support the work of the commission were prepared. The project is a positive example of regional cooperation on transboundary waters. This important United Nations initiative has received financial support from Sweden, the UK, and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.