ASHGABAT – The Stakeholder Dialogue on Water Saving and Conservation took place in the framework of the
EU-funded action “Water Management and Basin Organisations in Central Asia (WMBOCA)”, implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
During the meeting representatives of state agencies, international organisations, national and international experts discussed issues of rational and effective use of the water resources.
GIZ expert, Dr. Iskandar Abdullaev outlined aspects of water saving in irrigation: sustainability of the water saving practices was discussed by the participants.
International expert in water management, Dr. Frank Schrader, shared experience of existing international practices on water conservation. Specialist from the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC), Yekaterina Strikeleva, presented best practices of rational water use and conservation in Central Asian region. Experience of Turkmenistan with regard to introduction of water saving and conservation was presented by the Turkmen side.
In the framework of the ‘Water Management and Basin Organisations in Central Asia’ project implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH Transboundary Water Management in Central Asia Programme and financed by the European Union and the German Federal Foreign Office the project of the Isfara River Sub-Basin Plan for the Tajik territory was drafted. The Plan was drafted by the working group on basin planning during the meeting in Khudjand in April 2014.
The subbasin area of the Isfara River in its estuary is 3,240 km2. The sub-basin of the Isfara River totally covers the areas of the Isfara administrative rayon and partially the Kanibadam rayon of Sughd oblast. The majority of territory of Tajikistan is modi- fied by piedmont areas with elevation from 400 m to 800 m above the sea level. Vorukh enclave is at the elevation of 1,400 m and is the highest point in the Isfara rayon. The upper part of the Isfara river basin is located in the territory of Kyrgyzstan, while its lower part is closer to Ferghana Valley and is regarded as the Tajik territory.
The Isfara River Basin Plan for the part on the territory of the Kyrgyz Republic was developed by the Batken district working group of the Isfara river basin planning development and implementation. The members of the working group represent local water management, environmental protection, sanitary, epidemiological, economic agencies, local administration and water users. The plan includes the analysis and evaluation of the current and prospective situation of the basin, the list of priority problems, the long-term vision of the basin and the mechanisms for the implementation of measures aimed at solving existing problems. Below is PDF version of the short version of the Isfara River Basin Plan for the Batken district in English.
Download as PDF
The Isfara River and its catchment are located in the southwestern Ferghana valley. The river originates in Kyrgyzstan on the northern slopes of the Turkestan Range and flows northwards into the territory of Tajikistan through the Ferghana valley towards the Syr Darya River. The total catchment area is approximately 3,900 km²; the total area of irrigated land is ca. 265 km² (80 km² in Kyrgyzstan and 185 km² in Tajikistan). The catchment belongs to Batken Oblast in Kyrgyzstan and to Sughd Oblast in Tajikistan and includes Uzbek territories at the tail-end of the basin. The population of Batken Oblast is mainly ethnic Kyrgyz, with a large Tajik and a smaller Uzbek minority. The cross-border relationship is a particular issue as the Isfara catchment includes the Tajik enclave of Vorukh inside Kyrgyz territory. read more…
The Aral-Syrdarya basin is part of the larger basin of the Aral Sea and is subject to the Aral Sea desiccation process. Despite the best efforts of the Kazakh Government and international donors, it is doubtful that the environmental problems affecting the Aral Sea basin can be reversed.
One of the most pressing problems are the shortcomings in monitoring and management of the irrigation systems and water resources. The institutions responsible often lack the capacity to carry out comprehensive basin assessments. As a result, no proper planning takes place for the management of the resources – either with respect to the use of water at different levels, or in terms of water allocation timeframes. A more systematic approach to water management is therefore required if the situation is to improve. In response, Kazakhstan has now developed the National Integrated Water Resources Management and Water Efficiency Plan, beco- ming the first country in Central Asia to prepare such a plan.
The Kazakh Aral-Syrdarya basin stretches across the oblasts (administrative districts) of Kyzylorda and South Kazakhstan.
It occupies an area of roughly 345,000 km2 and is home to about 2.6 million people (17% of the total population of the Kazakh Republic). The main river of the basin is the Syr Darya, which is formed outside Kazakhstan by the confluence of the Naryn and Kara Darya rivers in the Fergana Valley.
Central Asia is an arid region where scarce water resources are distributed unequally across space and time. Many of the water- courses cross national borders. Countries in the region draw heavily on these resources, in particular for generating hydro- electric power and for irrigation purposes. Thus, conflicts of interest arise regarding the water’s use and distribution.
The economies of the five Central Asian states rely heavily on the Syr Darya and Amu Darya rivers, as well as other transboundary watercourses, to meet their water requirements. Consequently, their economies are interdependent. Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan, the countries at the lower reaches of the Syr Darya and Amu Darya, require considerable volumes of water to irrigate their agricultural land. Meanwhile, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, which lie further upstream, have few fossil materials for genera- ting power and are therefore seeking to use hydropower more widely.
ALMATY – 27-28 May, 2014 the regional conference on “Prospects for Water Resources Management in Central Asia: From Basin Approach to Regional Cooperation” takes place. The conference brings together the high-level water management organisations from the five Central Asian countries, as well as the representatives of international organisations involved in the field of water resources management and development of regional cooperation, along with the senior representatives from the European Union and the German Federal Foreign Office participate in the conference. During 2012-2014 the “Transboundary Water Resources Management in Central Asia” Programme in the framework of the “Water Management and Basin Organisations in Central Asia (WMBOCA)” project funded by the European Union, jointly with regional and national partners, has carried out a series of projects in the field of water resources management in Central Asia. The projects aimed at improving the water management sector and strengthening the regional cooperation in the matters of transboundary water resources. For example, the active work on introducing the international practice of water resources management has been carried out in basins of transboundary rivers of the Isfara (Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan), the Padshaota (Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan), the Aral-Syrdarya (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan) and the Murgab (Afghanistan, Turkmenistan). Along with the development of the capacity of local professionals through training and study tours, technical support has been provided in the form of procurement of technical equipment, implementation of rehabilitation and maintenance of water facilities in the above mentioned basins. The EU project completes its work in July 2014. During two years the project has carried out a considerable amount of work, the results of which are to be presented at the conference. The regional conference is dedicated to the exchange of knowledge and best practices that TWMCA acquired during the implementation of WMBOCA projects. In so doing, the representatives of national, regional and international partners attend the conference. The conference becomes a platform to discuss the prospects and opportunities for closer cooperation in the field of sustainable management of transboundary water resources in the region. The first day of the conference is dedicated to the consideration of political issues in water resources management, the second – the review of the work done within the framework of WMBOCA. In particular, the capacity building materials developed under the project are presented: a guidebook for basin planning, a river basin plan for the Isfara River (separately for Kyrgyz and Tajik parts of the basin), a training module for basin planning. “Water Management and Basin Organisations in Central Asia (WMBOCA)” is funded by the European Union and implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH acting in partnership with the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC). Budget of WMBOCA consists of approximately €2 million provided by the European Union and approximately €0.5 million provided by the German Federal Foreign office. Download PDF Publication
Population growth and climate change are factors influencing the decrease in water resources of the transboundary Padshaota River, which runs through Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. As such, there is an urgent need to improve how the river’s water resources are managed. The Padshaota River originates in Kyrgyzstan in the Chatkal Range, flows through Uzbekistan’s Namangan Oblast, and then flows back into Kyrgyzstan. The river is fed by mountain glaciers, has a mean basin elevation of about 2,000 metres above sea level, is about 130 km in length, and has a catchment area of 443 km2. Average annual discharge is estimated at 5.5 m3 per second. Around 130,000 people live in the Uzbekistan part of the river basin. The total area of irrigated land in the whole river basin stands at 27,800 ha, of which 24,000 ha are located in Uzbekistan and 3,800 ha in Kyrgyzstan. According to the water allocation scheme agreed in 1980 between the two riparian countries, 36% of the available water resources of the Padshaota River are used by Kyrgyzstan and 64% by Uzbekistan. Water measurement and allocation is carried out at the Oporniy hydropost located inside Kyrgyzstan, 20 km from the Uzbekistan border.
The objective of the programme is to improve the livelihoods of local farmers and water users in the Padshaota river basin by developing sustainable water management and integrated co- operation in water resources management between the two riparian countries. Download PDF Publication
The Isfara River originates in Kyrgyzstan on the northern slopes of the Turkestan Range and flows north into Tajikistan through the Ferghana Valley, towards the Syr Darya River. It measures about 120 km in total.
The catchment area covers Batken Oblast (administrative district) in Kyrgyzstan and Sughd Oblast in Tajikistan, and includes Uzbek territories at the tail-end of the basin. The river, historically a tribu- tary of the Syr Darya, merges at its mouth with the Great Fergana Canal. Currently, the canal’s water is exploited almost entirely for irrigation by the local population before it actually reaches the Syr Darya. Seasonal mudflows that result from the annual snowmelt in spring threaten the local population’s livelihood and the opera- tion of infrastructure.
The Isfara headwork ‘Zumratsho’ is located three kilometres above Isfara city. It regulates the supply of irrigation and drinking water for the populations of Isfara city and Lakkon Valley. Furthermore, it distributes water between the Isfara and Koni- bodom districts.
The headwork regulates the intake of water into the bypass canal, which then supplies fields with water for irrigation needs in Lakkon Valley. The headwork controls the entry of silt, stores water for a short period of time and reduces fluctuations in the supply of water to the canal.
The Isfara headwork was built in 1960 and initially served 10,000 ha of arable land. Due to constant operation and the long absence of rehabilitation measures, it has significantly deteriorated and currently serves about 8,000 ha of land.
Seasonal floods and mudslides filled the headwork structure with soil, stones and gravel, destroying its concrete base and gates. This resulted in a decrease in the headwork’s water intake. Consequent- ly, the amount of water available for irrigation and drinking has gradually fallen. Recently, the headwork’s technical condition was rated as critical. A number of structures were not operational. The lower spillway dam, the concrete lining of the upper and lower sections and the metal parts of the closures required immediate rehabilitation.
Study tour on the Self-Management of Water and Soil Utilisation of Lower River Basin Units in Germany
Although centralised planning and management of water re-sources continues to predominate in the five Central Asian states, reform of the current water management system is on-going in most of them. The aim is to complete the transition of major functions to the local level.
A study tour was conducted for Central Asian representatives of national ministries concerned with water and land resources management and for the representatives of local water administrations. The purpose of the tour was the study of methods for the self-administration of water and soil utilisation in Germany. The experience gained will provide the water managers from Central Asia with new ideas for shaping and improving on the reforms taking place in their own countries.
The objective of the study tour was to demonstrate methods for the self-administration of water and land resources, for the protection of these resources, and for maintenance measures by the water and soil associations in sub-river basins within the German Federal State of Brandenburg. Focus was on the Nuthe and Welse river basins.
The study tour also highlighted the integrative work of water professionals from the national governmental level to the provincial level and to highlight challenges and solutions for sustainable water and land management.
In addition, the participants became acquainted with the key objectives of the European Union’s Water Framework Directive and the main results of its implementation.
The Transboundary Water Management in Central Asia Programme is implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Federal Foreign Office. Under the Programme, measures are implemented that not only optimise cooperation in the Central Asian water sector, but also improve the lives of people in the region. Effective water management and cross-border cooperation contribute to stability and security and thus to sustainable economic development. The programme operates in Central Asia since 2009 and will continue until 2014. Starting from 2012 the activities of the programme are co-funded by the European Union.Funding for the overall Programme totals 17 million Euro.