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Regional approach can protect nature in Central Asia  #withnature

"The whole life of the Turkmen people is permeated with love for nature,” said the President of Turkmenistan, lauding World Environment Day when opening a regional meeting of environment ministers in Ashgabat.

Since many of the Global Goals are regional in nature, regional cooperation and coordination in the field of environmental protection needs to be strengthened in response to growing challenges such as  climate change, population growth and urbanization, participants agreed at the meeting.

“Shocked to see the effects of climate change – 30% of Tajikistan’s spectacular glaciers have melted. There’s no time to lose to take climate action” UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres tweeted during his visit to Central Asia in June.

Climate change is indeed threatening access to water and farming in the region, finds UN Environment’s Mountain Outlook report for Central Asia launched during the Ashgabat meeting.

One third of the region’s glaciers having melted in the past 100 years and water supply expected to decline by a further 12% across the region by 2050, states the report.

As a result, without adaptation measures, crop yields in Uzbekistan could fall 20-50% by 2050 while population levels continue to rise.
The rise in temperatures is already denting agricultural production as farmers must go uphill to find land that has better water supply and is less saline. Juniper trees are now cultivated 500-700 metres higher than in the year 2000 in Turkmenistan for example.

However, policymakers have the chance to act - provided there is coordination at local, national and regional levels, climate policy is seen as holding the potential to contribute to sustainable development in Central Asia. Drought-resistant crops, micro finance and the opening of national parks are already bringing fruits in this regard, the Outlook demonstrates.

To read the Mountain Outlook report in Russian or a summary in English click here and for more information please contact




















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