The concern about improvement of the environmental situation,
creation of more favourable environmental terms, conditions for life and labour of
people, has become one of the major targets of the world community as well as of each separate
Turkmenistan has a very beneficial geographical position,
favourable natural and climatic conditions, and well-developed transport communications.
Mainly the petrochemical, oil-and-gas, fuel-energy, food, machine-building and textile
Industries, production of mineral fertilisers, and processing of agricultural products
form the multi-sector industrial complex in Turkmenistan.
The agricultural production in Turkmenistan is characterised
by a relatively high level of mechanisation, wide application of mineral fertilisers and
chemical means of plant protection, and by a rather large number of state and private
agricultural associations. The production sector Is not entirely well equipped
technologically. This circumstance resulted in serious environmental problems, including
unwise management of the natural resources. Turkmenistan consumes much more natural
resources and energy per a product unit than is used by the world's developed countries. A
considerable part of natural resources is wasted. Among poorly developed industrial
branches is the use of secondary raw materials; there is also a poor material and
technical base for utilisation and burial of the wastes which so far cannot be used for
The high level of the air pollution is a dangerous factor.
Prevention of pollution of drainage and ground waters also has not been completely
achieved. Problems concerning the condition of the game animals and maintenance of their
genetic diversity are still unresolved. The consequences of the Aral Sea crisis and the
rise of the Caspian Sea level cause the most serious environmental problems.
Turkmenistan has accumulated rich experience developing and
accomplishing of the state policy directed toward the environmental protection. The
Turkmen Government pays much attention to the protection and improvement of the natural
The constitutional act of Turkmenistan " On Independence
and Foundations of the State Organization" adopted on October 27, 1991 envisages that
"the Earth, its entrails, air space, water and other natural resources within the
Turkmenistan territory and the sea economic zone are national wealth and property of the
people, and serves as a material basis of Turkmenistan independence". Only in 1997
the Turkmenistan Government assigned 19,811 million manats to the environmental protection
and rational management of natural resources, including 63.3% of all capital state
investments allocated for the rational use of water resources, 24.5% for the use of land,
and 12.2% for the use of air.
Protection and conservation of the natural environment are
accomplished through legal actions defined in special laws; the law on nature protection,
the law on specially protected natural territories, laws on conservation and rational
management of flora and fauna, air, criminal legislation and others.
After becoming, on March 2, 1992, a full-fledged member of
the United Nations, Turkmenistan as a young Sovereign State undertook a liability to
steadily follow the principles of the Declaration of Human Rights. Upon adoption in
December 1995 by the UN General Assembly of a special resolution on permanent neutrality
of Turkmenistan, the higher representative body of people's power of the country, the
People's Council, passed in addition the Declaration on International Liabilities of the
State in Relation to Human Rights and Freedoms.
Having joined the world community, Turkmenistan declared
about its adherence to international obligations and joined the Convention on
Biodiversity, the Convention on Desertification Control, the Convention on Climate
Changes, the Vienna Convention, and the Montreal Protocol on Protection of the Ozone
Layer, Aarhus Convention, etc.
Turkmenistan has developed and is now realising the Program
on reduction of use of ozone-depleting substances. In 1999, according to the agreement
with the Global Ecological Fund, Turkmenistan has received equipment and substitutes of
ozone-depleting substances on privileged terms.
Certain efforts are made in the country to improve the
environmental literacy. The future ecologists and meteorologists are educated at the
Department of Ecology of the Natural-Geographical Division, Magtymguly Turkmen State
University. The structure of the Ministry of Nature Protection of Turkmenistan has been
reformed. The National Institute of Deserts, Flora and Fauna was created under this
Ministry; this allowed to consolidate the scientific research in natural conservation and
to increase the contribution of Turkmenistan toward the implementation of both national
and regional programs and projects.
The Ministry of Nature Protection of Turkmenistan and the UN
Development Program together with the national experts developed the Draft National
Program for the Natural Environment Protection in Turkmenistan (NPNEP). A plan of actions
necessary to implement the National Program was signed between Turkmenistan and the UNEP.
It includes eight pilot projects, which outline priority tasks for 1998-2000 connected
with a reform of the environmental policy and institutional relations.
The National Report on Natural Environment Protection in
Turkmenistan for 1998 is the first publication in this series. It clarifies major issues
of the natural conservation and lists concrete ways of their resolution.
This report describes the major directions of the
environmental policy pursued by the state that, to a great extent, ensure development of
harmonious relationships between humans and nature. In this context the report pays a
great attention to protection, conservation and restoration of the major components of the
Conclusions and recommendations of this report follow from
the general principles securing profitability and efficiency of natural resource
development with the emphasis on protection of the people's health and biosphere in
The general priorities outlined in this report are in harmony
with the specific tasks envisaged in the Program "A Decade of Stability" of the
Turkmen President S. Niyazov.
The presented report is prepared by the specialists of the
Ministry of Nature Protection of Turkmenistan, with the active participation of the
experts from other ministries, departments, research and educational institutions.
This Report represents a solid contribution toward shaping
the national policy on the sustainable development in Turkmenistan, and it outlines the
natural conservation tasks that are to be resolved at the present time