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Central Asian countries step up cooperation in the field of climate change

22.06.2023 | 03:05 |
 Central Asian countries step up cooperation in the field of climate change

On June 20-21, more than 60 participants representing a wide range of government organizations and civil society organizations from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, as well as regional and international organizations, gathered for a seminar in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The event was organized by the OSCE Office of the Coordinator of Economic and Environmental Activities in partnership with the Berlin analytical center Adelphi.

Based on the results of the Regional Consultation on Climate Change and Security in Central Asia, the workshop made it possible to discuss climate-related problems in the highlands and plains and explore opportunities for cooperation to solve these problems.

It is expected that by the end of the century, the temperature in Central Asia will rise by 2.5-6.5 degrees Celsius. This makes the entire region increasingly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, including droughts, desalination, high temperatures, abnormal heat, heavy precipitation, mudslides, floods and avalanches.

"The effects of climate change do not exist in isolation from insecurity and instability. When States cooperate with each other in combating climate change and preserving common natural resources, it promotes good-neighborly relations, prosperity, stability and security. This is the essence of the 2021 Decision of the OSCE Council of Foreign Ministers on Climate Change and the OSCE's work in the field of climate change and security, including in the Central Asian region," OSCE Economic and Environmental Coordinator Igli Hasani said.

During the workshop, participants discussed issues such as livelihood guarantees in mountainous areas, the effects of glacier melting on the management of natural resources in high-altitude and low-lying areas, early warning to eliminate the dangers associated with glacier melting, and migration. By addressing these common issues, participants were able to explore potential areas of cooperation, helping them to better address these issues at the regional and cross-border levels, while ensuring the active participation of women and youth.

"Climate-related problems are especially evident in the high-altitude areas of Central Asia. There, climate change is accelerating the melting of glaciers, thereby threatening the ability of glaciers to store critical water resources for the entire region, as well as creating a number of dangerous risks. It can also affect the livelihoods of many communities living in these mountainous areas. Therefore, efforts to develop regional cooperation are urgently needed to eliminate these risks," said Beatrice Mozello, Senior Advisor at Adelphi.

The regional seminar "Towards Enhanced Cooperation to Address Climate-related Security risks in Central Asia" was organized within the framework of the OSCE project "Strengthening the Response to Security Risks associated with Climate Change in Southeastern Europe, Eastern Europe, the South Caucasus and Central Asia", which is implemented in partnership with adelphi and in close cooperation with OSCE field operations.



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