Общественное Объединение Сеть экспертов устойчивого развития Центральной Азии
National Workshop “Action Plan for Achieving SDG 6.5 (IWRM) in Kazakhstan”
According to the UN, more than 1.2 billion people live in conditions of a constant shortage of fresh water, about 1 billion people do not have access to clean drinking water, about 2 billion suffer from water shortages. According to FAO forecasts, by 2050, the population experiencing persistent water shortages will exceed 4 billion people. Experts call this century the “age of water problems”.
The problem of water resources in Kazakhstan in conditions of limited water resources and the vulnerability of water ecosystems, as well as high dependence on transboundary flow, is considered as a matter of national security. This is determined by the fact that fresh water is the most important natural resource, without which neither economic development, nor any other human activity is possible.
With the growing shortage of water, its unreasonable use and losses, especially in agriculture, are completely unjustified. At the same time, water management, which is recognized by all experts as the main cause of losses and low water productivity, remains archaic, fragmentary and extremely inefficient in Kazakhstan.
At the seminar with the participation of government agencies, experts, NGOs and international organizations, a Plan of Practical Actions for Improving Water Resources Management will be presented, which at the global level has been announced as one of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 6.5).
The draft plan, prepared by experts, practitioners and NGOs, taking into account open discussions, proposed a number of key measures to fundamentally change the water management system in the country, including the establishment of a State Agency for Water Resources independent of water users, as well as the restoration of the work of the Interdepartmental Water Council, strengthening basin organizations and other measures tested by the successful experience of other countries.
The plan proposes to implement a pilot project for the creation of Basin Corporation JSC in the basin of Lake Balkhash as a practical mechanism for integrated management and inter-branch cooperation, including through involving the population and water users in managing the pool with the rights of owners (their future).