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UNECE Reports on Workshop on Neman River Basin Management in a Changing Climate

UNECE5 November 2012: The UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) newsletter for the week of 5-9 November 2012 reports on workshops on challenges and prospects for the joint management of the Neman River basin, which addressed the impacts of climate change.

The workshops, which took place from 15-19 October 2012, in Hrodna, Belarus, and Druskininkia, Lithuania, brought together participants from the Russian Federation, Belarus and Lithuania, and included a field trip from Hrodna to Kaunas in Lithuania. The workshops took place under the aegis of the “river basin management and climate change adaptation in the Neman River Basin” project being implemented by UNECE and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Belarus. The project has developed an understanding by riparians about expected climate change impacts in the basin, including increased droughts and floods affecting agriculture, industry and water quality.

The workshops demonstrated the importance of transboundary approaches to water management and climate change adaptation. UNECE expressed the hope that the outcomes will support ongoing negotiations of a Neman basin agreement by the three basin States. The project is one of a programme of pilot projects on climate change adaptation being supported under the UNECE Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes (UNECE Watercourses Convention) launched in 2010. [Publication: UNECE Weekly, issue 502]