Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan — Today, officials from Central Asia (CA) countries, the European Union (EU) and the Italian Ministry for Ecological Transition (IMET) convened the third meeting of the Coordination Committee of the European Union – Central Asia Working Group on Environment and Climate Change (WGECC) to continue discussions on cooperation for a post-pandemic green and resilient recovery.
The online meeting, co-chaired by Mr Andrzej Januszewski of the European Commission’s General Directorate for the Environment and Mr Angiolo Martinelli of IMET, was held in preparation for the 10th WGECC meeting to be co-chaired by Kazakhstan and scheduled to take place in Almaty this year.
The parties discussed the progress in preparing an expert overview on the current state of biodiversity in Central Asia. The overview is being prepared by the EU-funded project WECOOP and is to be presented at the 10th WGECC meeting. WECOOP also reported on its work to promote green investments in renewable energy and cleaner air in the region. The project continues to work closely with the partners from both governmental and non-governmental sectors in all CA countries, providing expert consultations and sharing the EU know-how in air and water quality management, introduction of best available techniques, biodiversity conservation and energy efficiency.
Under the European Green Deal, the EU is committed to make Europe a climate-neutral continent by 2050 and lead the global transition to circular economy, halt biodiversity loss, protect human health, and advance climate action on the global agenda. The EU reiterated its support to CA partner countries in their efforts to address climate change, to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation and to protect the environment and ecosystems in the region.
IMET underlined the importance of promoting a new paradigm in the connections between environment and development. Italy supports the WGECC in finding a common way to address the challenges of climate change and achieve ambitious sustainable development goals.
The meeting was organised by the EU-funded project “European Union – Central Asia Water, Environment and Climate Change Cooperation” (WECOOP).
The Platform for Environment and Water Cooperation was established at the EU–CA High Level Conference in Rome (Italy) in 2009. The Platform is a framework for the implementation of the EU–CA cooperation in water and environment, based on the EU Strategy on Central Asia agreed with the CA countries. The European Union – Central Asia Working Group on Environment and Climate Change (WGECC) chaired by the European Commission and the Italian Ministry for Ecological Transition (IMET), assists in the identification of regional cooperation priority actions and supports the Platform by strengthening policy dialogue and cooperation within the region as well as between the EU and CA.
The EU-funded project “European Union – Central Asia Water, Environment and Climate Change Cooperation” (WECOOP) (third phase from October 2019 to October 2022) aims to enhance environment, climate change and water policies at national levels in Central Asia through approximation to EU standards and to promote investments in relevant sectors with the aim of contributing to measurable reductions in man-made pollution, including CO2 emission. The project activities include support to the EU–CA Platform for Environment and Water Cooperation and its Working Group on Environment and Climate Change, as well as implementation of the EU Green Deal’s international dimension in Central Asia to advance climate action.
For additional information, please contact Mrs Yelena Serebrennikova, Senior Communication Expert, WECOOP, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, mobile/WhatsApp +77019814020, Ms Nurgul Smagulova, Event and Communication Officer, WECOOP, e-mail: email@example.com, mobile/WhatsApp: +77012066760, Elnura Abakanova, Communications Officer, EU Delegation to Kazakhstan, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meeting materials: https://wecoop.eu/events/3wgcc/
Photo by Ivan Turkovskii.