Arzuw NEWS - Turkmenistan news

Desert ecosystems of Turkmenistan to be included in the UNESCO list

The intermediate results of the project "Central Asian Desert Initiative (CADI/CADI) - Conservation and Sustainable Use of Deserts of Turkmenistan" organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment of Turkmenistan and Michael Zuckow Foundation for Nature Protection (FRG) were summarized. This project has been implemented for two years together with the University of Greifswald and the FAO sub-regional office for Central Asia.

Conservation activities within the project are focused on the conservation of biodiversity and development of ecosystem functions of the Turkmen desert ecosystems. Also activities are aimed at nomination of territories to the UNESCO list, implementation of measures to expand the protected areas, improvement of management, conducting technical consultations, conducting general field studies.

The following state reserves take part in the project: Repetek, Bereketli-Garagum and Gaplangyr.

At the end of 2020, environmental experts discussed plans to improve conservation activities. The III meeting of the Coordination Committee of the Turkmen, Uzbek, Kazakh coordinators was held, who presented reports on their activities. During the project implementation field expeditions were conducted to the Northern, Central and Eastern Karakums; biodiversity inventory was made and information about desert biosystems was updated. The results of the expedition research will be published in the dossier "Turan deserts of the temperate belt", prepared for inclusion of the Central Asian deserts territories in the UNESCO list - the preliminary summary has already been submitted to the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.

The Turanian deserts of Central Asia are characterized by specific climatic conditions and a unique species diversity - representatives of local flora and fauna have adapted to the harsh local conditions of nature.

Despite its scale and diversity, the biomes of the Turan Desert are poorly represented on the UNESCO list. In 2021 the project experts have the task to complete the process of preparing the inclusion of our desert ecosystems in the UNESCO list.

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