Almaty Hosts Ecology Experts From Five Central Asian Countries
Recently, ecology experts from Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan held a meeting in Almaty.
Disputes regarding water resources have been arising among the countries of Central Asia for decades. During their meeting, the mountainous countries Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, and the lower land countries Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan, who are the main consumers of such large transboundary rivers as Syr Darya and Amu Darya, which form the basin of the Aral Sea (the fourth largest lake in the world), expressed their anxiety regarding the uneven distribution of water resources.
Main reservoirs, hydropower stations and water storages are located on the territories of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, enabling independent control of water distribution for the three neighboring countries.
All five countries have been trying to resolve the situation in the most favorable way for each of them for many years now. All the more so, as the region faces another serious challenge, such as a threatening shortage of water due to rapid melting of glaciers in the mountains of Central Asia.
Many international experts identify this situation as an impending catastrophe, not only in the Central Asian region, but all around the world as well. It is this problem able to make a significant impact on the water crisis in Central Asia.
That is in perspective. In the meanwhile, many more escalations are occurring regarding the construction of the Rogun and Kambarata Hydropower Station. The Kambarata Hydropower Station will be the most powerful station in Kyrgyzstan, enabling the export of Kyrgyz electricity. The project of the Rogun Hydropower Station is even more ambitious as the projected capacity is around 360 MW; however, neither of the countries have sufficient funds to complete the construction.
Therefore, the states have not yet reached any effective solution regarding water resources in Central Asia. Water consumption has been
regulated by the Interstate Committee Coordinating Water Resources of Central Asia, which has been functioning since 1992 and by the International Fund for saving the Aral Sea, founded by Central Asian countries in 1993. It is operating with active support from UNO, OSCE, UNESCO, world banking institutions, and governments of the donor countries. In 2017, a threeyear chairmanship in OSCE was passed to Turkmenistan, which on the level of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, emphasizes the necessity of a united strategy development by the countries of the region.