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Turan deserts of Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are being prepared for nomination to the UNESCO world heritage List

Turan deserts of Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan are being prepared for nomination to the UNESCO world heritage List

Within the framework of the project "Central Asian desert initiative (CADI) – Conservation and sustainable use of the deserts of Turkmenistan", four joint scientific expeditions were carried out during 2019 to the reserves "Bereketli Garagum" and “Repetek”, as well as dry subtropical deserts of the Patricia and the Caspian Sea to study the components of biodiversity, the website "Turkmenistan: Golden age" reports.

Based on the data obtained, national experts have prepared and submitted reports that are the basic information for the preparation of the nomination dossier for inclusion of desert ecosystems of the temperate zone in the UNESCO list. A rationale is also being prepared for revising and expanding the boundaries of the “Bereketli Garagum” reserve and creating favorable habitat conditions for wild ungulates here

The CADI project is implemented jointly by the Ministry of agriculture and environmental protection of Turkmenistan and the Michael Zukkov Foundation (Germany). The project is aimed at preserving the biological diversity of Central Asian deserts and nominating desert ecosystems to the UNESCO world heritage list.

Aspects of including the temperate deserts of our region in the UNESCO world heritage list were discussed at a seminar with Central Asian experts and international consultants recently organized by the International Academy for conservation of nature in Wilma (Germany).

At the seminar, it was noted that the Turan deserts are valuable as areas of habitat and migration of various species of fauna, including ungulates and birds. Participants of the seminar agreed on positions on joint preparation of a transnational serial nomination for inclusion in the world heritage list of objects of the temperate zone deserts in Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

The temperate deserts of Central Asia extend from the Caspian Sea to southern Mongolia, from the foothills of the Tibetan highlands to the steppes of Kazakhstan, and are home to a large number of plant and animal species, consisting not only of sand massifs, but also of salt marshes, stony and gypsum deserts, and characteristic geological formations such as chinks.

In Turkmenistan, these are the following protected areas: The “Bereketli Garagum” and “Gaplangyr” nature reserves, as well as the “Repetek” biosphere reserve. The next step will be the creation of a regional working group to prepare the nomination dossier "Turan deserts of the temperate zone". It will include representatives of relevant departments and the CADI project from each country in the region.

The workshop participants agreed and adopted an annual work plan for the implementation of project activities.

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