Events on the occasion of the 15th anniversary of ICWC took place on 23-28 April 2007 in Almaty with participation of key local and foreign organizations and specialists. The general objective of the conference was to analyze the current situation and problems in water sector of Central Asian countries and agree joint efforts to implement specific actions including ASBP-2 in the near and distant future.
Within the framework of the jubilee conference, CAREC organized and held on 26 April 2007 a special session “Environmental Challenges in Central Asia: analysis and future outlook”, with participation of representatives from the Ministry of Water Resources of Azerbaijan, Ministry of Water Resources of Tajikistan, BWO Amudarya, Asian Development Bank, OSCE, Scientific Production Association “KAZMEKHANOBR”, Almaty City Maslikhat (Council), Almaty Province Akimat (Administration), NGOs of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, Regional Environmental Center of Caucasus and Central Asia.
The following issues were discussed at the special session:
- Central Asian Initiative on Sustainable Development
- Urgency of inter-sectoral cooperation in forming environmental policy in Central Asia
- Integrated management in Ili-Balkhash basin
- Standards of surface water quality in Central Asia
- Issues of aquatic ecosystem conservation in Central Asia
- Environmental education and education for sustainable development in Central Asia
- Caspian environmental program: sustainable development of local communities
- Rural water supply in Ili-Balkhash basin
- Public and NGO participation in water resources management
After discussions the participants of the special session suggested:
- Taking into account the information about Central Asian initiative on sustainable development within the framework of preparatory process to Belgrade Ministerial Conference on the Environment; Further ensuring cooperation with SIC ICWC and other stakeholders in regard to rational use and protection of water resources in Central Asia
- Preparing together with the Regional Council of GWP CACENA and CAREC and inserting a Report on Achievements of Central Asian Initiative into the UN Report towards the 16th UN CSD session;
- Preparing a report using materials of the Aquatic and Semi-Aquatic Ecosystem Assessment, results of activities under the Program fir Small Grants and Program for Environmental Education of CAREC, and presenting it at the 1st Asia-Pacific Water Summit;
- CAREC together with REC Caucasus should develop a concept for public protected natural areas using the experience from formation of public-protected natural areas in Japan;
- Preparing and submitting project proposals to Almaty Maslikhat for participation in on-budget programs of the city of Almaty;
- Preparing and submitting project proposals to provincial administrations for the environment, for participation in provincial on-budget environmental programs of Kazakhstan.