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UNECE Releases Second Environmental Performance Review of Tajikistan

UNECE14 December 2012: The "Second Environmental Performance Review (EPR) of Tajikistan" conducted by the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) highlights that waste management and clean water and sanitation remain challenges for this country. UNECE EPRs cover ten elements including: environmental policymaking, planning and implementation; financing of environmental policies; waste and water management; biodiversity conservation; and integration of environmental issues into energy and health policies.

The report notes that only one third of Tajikistan's population has access to chlorinated water and only 5% are connected to a sewer system, while both water and sewer services are often cut by power outages. On waste management, the report outlines that municipal solid waste collection only covers 26% of the population and disposal sites do not meet sanitary standards. Other risks highlighted include tailings ponds from mining operations, including 54.8 tons of uranium mining waste.

The EPR issues 47 recommendations for improving environmental governance including on: policymaking framework for environmental protection and sustainable development; compliance and enforcement mechanisms; information, public participation and education; implementation of international agreements and commitments; economic instruments and expenditures for environmental protection; sustainable management of water resources; waste management; forestry, biodiversity and protected areas (PAs); and human health and environment.

Among the recommendations, the EPR calls for: improving the coordination of legislative initiatives and transparency of the lawmaking process; reviewing existing environmental legislation to identify and address gaps; establishing a body to address climate change issues, including by developing a national adaptation strategy; implementing guiding principles and activities under the water sector reform; ensuring rehabilitation of irrigation and drainage networks is accompanied by training for improved water economy and sustainable farming; finalizing the draft national waste management strategy; and establishing a participatory monitoring system for priority elements of biodiversity and forest resources. [UNECE Press Release] [Publication: Tajikistan Second Review Synopsis] [Publication: Tajikistan Second Review Highlights]