event 17 Jan 2022

Nexus Regional Dialogue Central Asia // EU supports development of technical solutions against silting of resevoirs in Central Asia

CENTRAL ASIA – On 2 November 2021, the technical working group established in the framework of the EU-funded project "Nexus Dialogue in Central Asia" to study the issue of siltation of the Ruslovoe reservoir at the Tuyamuyun Hydroelectric Complex (THC) held its third meeting online.

category Policy tag Water tag Water-resource management tag Governance (of the Nexus) tag Policy globe Asia globe Central Asia
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The working group members are authorized officials from relevant ministries and agencies of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, including specialists from THC, national coordinators and technical experts.

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The project experts presented the outcomes of three core assessments: 1. a holistic assessment of THC and its impact on the areas it feeds with water (i.e. Dashoguz province of Turkmenistan, as well as the Republic of Karakalpakstan and Khorezm province of Uzbekistan), 2. assessment of climate change risks and impact on THC and the areas it supports, and 3. measurements of the sedimentation volume taken by experts in Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan in summer 2021. Based on the outcomes of this analytical work, it is planned to develop a forecast of siltation growth for the next 50 years, technical recommendations for silt treatment, as well as the cost-benefit analysis of several alternative technical solutions.

The above-specified assessments were carried out as part of the demonstration project at the THC with the technical support provided by the World Bank’s experts under the Central Asia Water and Energy Program (CAWEP) and the regional project “Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Program for Aral Sea Basin" (CAMP4ASB). The demonstration project aims to address the most urgent challenge in Central Asia – intensive siltation of reservoirs, which limits their capacity to accumulate, conserve and control water resources that are so essential for all water users in the surrounding area.

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"The measurements taken at the Ruslovoe reservoir not only show the current level of its siltation, but also enable us to anticipate the volume of water in the THC storage reservoirs which supply water to the riparian countries", stated Mr Kurbanbai Babazhanov, Head of the THC Operation Division.

The Ruslovoe reservoir controls the flow of the Amudarya River which goes to the three storage reservoirs at THC (i.e., Kaparass, Sultansandjar and Kushbulak) to cover water and irrigation needs of Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. The volume of its siltation has already reached 70%, which threatens sustainable water supply for local population, ecosystems and economy of both countries. THC supplies water for: 1. irrigation of 779,300 ha of land in Uzbekistan and 425,000 ha in Turkmenistan 2.electric power generation in Uzbekistan (450 million kWh per year); and 3. drinking water in Khorezm province and Karakalpakstan.

The EU-funded project "Nexus Dialogue in Central Asia" is implemented by the Central Asia Regional Environmental Centre (CAREC). The project’s duration: June 2020 – May 2023; total budget: EUR 1.25 million with the EU’s contribution of EUR 1 million.

The second phase (2020-2023) of the European Union project "Central Asian Dialogue to Promote Sectoral Financing through the Water-Energy-Food Nexus" is a continuation of the first phase (2016-2019) and is being implemented by the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia (CAREC). The project is part of the global Nexus Dialogue Programme, which is supported by the European Union (EU) and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in five regions.

This project is funded by the European Union.

This article was first published on the CAREC website on 2 November, 2021.

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