The Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC) and a Regional Working Group (RWG) established under the UNECE “Water Quality in Central Asia” project held the final project meeting May 3, 2012 in Almaty.
Water quality is an important aspect of integrated water resources management, which requires further action at national and regional levels.There is a need to improve national policies and regional co-operation with the ultimate goal of improving water quality.
During the project period 2009-2011, the five Central Asian countries made considerable steps towards the development of water quality cooperation in the region. National experts representing environmental, water, hydro-meteorological agencies, and ministries of health appointed to be part of the Regional Working Group on water quality evaluated their national systems for the management of water quality and developed a regional diagnostic report and plan for regional cooperation. Also, within the framework of the project pilot projects on monitoring transboundary rivers and activities for capacity building and raised awareness of the various stakeholders were organized.
The meeting of the “Water Quality in Central Asia” project included presentations and discussions of project results including the monitoring pilot projects. A film on water sampling in pilot areas was screened. The plan for regional cooperation on water quality developed under the project and its implementation was discussed as well as further opportunities for the development of regional cooperation on water quality.
The Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia is an organization working on environmental issues in Central Asia. Founders of CAREC are Central Asian countries consisting of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, as well as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the European Commission (EC). The CAREC headquarters are located in Almaty, Kazakhstan with country offices operate in all the five member Central Asian countries.
The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) was set up in 1947. UNECE’s major aim is to promote pan-European economic integration. To do so, it brings together 56 countries. As a multilateral platform, UNECE facilitates greater economic integration and cooperation among its member countries and promotes sustainable development and economic prosperity through policy dialogue, negotiation of international legal instruments, development of regulations and norms, exchange and application of best practices as well as economic and technical expertise, technical cooperation for countries with economies in transition.
The UNECE project «Water Quality in Central Asia» funded by the UN Development Account was launched in March 2009 and will be concluded in June 2012.