Reducing Transboundary Degradation in the Kura-Aras Basin
The Kura-Aras river system is critical to sustainable development of the South Caucasus countries - Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia as well as the two upstream countries - Iran and Turkey. The rivers run into and impact the Caspian Sea, therefore affecting all communities using the Sea.
The Kura – Aras Rivers flow from the Caucasus mountains down to the Caspian Sea.
Between 2005 to 2007, the governments of Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia participated in the preliminary Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis (TDA) (Russian Version) to identify the main transboundary issues in basin. These issues are: 1. variation and reduction of hydrological flow; 2. deterioration of water quality; 3. ecosystem degradation in the river basin; and, 4. increased flooding and bank erosion.
To address these threats the Full Sized Project will review the preliminary TDA and provide important updates and to fill information gaps. The Project will also support the countries to develop National Integrated Water Resources Management Plans (IWRM Plans) in each country. These National IWRM plans will help each country identify priorities for water use, and strategies for ensuring optimal resource utilization - especially where there are conflicting demands on limited resources. These IWRM plans will be linked with national planning priorities and within the budget planning cycles.
To make these efforts lasting, wide reaching and sustainable, the project plans to focus on key stakeholder capacity-building and public awareness raising activities. These will include trainings on priority IWRM issues across the basin region. These trainings will be developed by national, regional and international experts, and shared with the wider community through our project web page as video training modules. Public awareness raising activities will help people throughout the basin understand sustainable water resource use, why it is important to them and how they can help preserve the beautiful environment we all enjoy.
To help the countries to create standardized measurements for river health the project will implement demonstration projects. These will focus on river flow rates impacted by climate change and developments in the river system, an ecologicial assessment of the rivers, and introduction of biomonitoring – which uses living organisms in the water to gauge river system health.
The updated TDA, the national IWRM Plans, the stakeholder capacity building activities, and the demonstration projects will serve as a strong foundation for the final output – a Strategic Action Programme for the basin. This Programme will serve to harmonize national, and regional, priorities and plans to ensure long term sustainable management of the river basin.
Asia , Western Asia
|Documents & Resources|
|Project type||Full-Sized Project|
|Project Status||Project Completion|
|Start Date||30 Jun 2009|
|End Date||27 Feb 2012|
|YES - See results data (1375)|
|Focal Area||International Waters|
|GEF Allocation to project||USD 2,900,000|
|Total Cost of the project:||USD 13,250,000|
, - Regional
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Dr. Mary M. Matthews Project Coordinator and Chief Technical Advisor
Mr. Edgar Pirumyan Head of Department
Mr. Rasim Sattarzada Head
Mr. Herald Leummens Demonstration Project Coordinator
Mr. Seth McNayr Project Assistant
Dr. Vladimir Mamaev GEF Regional Technical Advisor