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The second eco-media festival was initiated by the Environmental Press-Centre
of Kazakhstan's NGO Eco-Forum and a group of associated Central Asian NGOs. The
festival followed last years in Bishkek. The project was funded through a grant
programme of the Regional Environmental Centre for Central Asia,
UNEP/GRID-Arendal contributed matching funds. The award ceremony on 11 November
in Almaty was attended by a number of key stakeholders including the Ministry of
the Environment. It brought together winning print, radio and television
journalists from five CA countries in nominations the press, radio and TV.
Winning printed works were distributed and TV programmes demonstrated.


Besides being and excellent networking opportunity, the festival award
ceremony brought together environmental journalists from the five countries for
participation in an environmental media training workshop lead by John Bennett
(UNEP/GRID-Arendal), Paul Brown (The Guardian) and Alex Kirby (BBC).The training
was practical and centred around investigating a concrete case: a proposal to
lift a ban on importing radioactive waste into Kazakhstan. The programme
included an investigation of available background information, meetings with
sources from both the governmental and non-governmental sectors, and drafting
and discussing the stories among 'students' and 'trainers'.

According to
sources in Kazakhstan, in January 2003 as a result of the antinuclear campaign
the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Kazakhstan declared its disagreement
with the proposal to allow the import of radioactive waste. The group of
parliamentarians who had supported the initiative at the beginning expressed
their intention to block the amendments that would lift the import ban. The
Prime Minister requested that the Government prepares a programme to dispose of
Kazakhstan's nuclear waste without the use of foreign funding.


Import of nuclear waste into Kazakhstan: coverage of the case study by
participants of the media training



The 2nd regional festival of environmental journalism and environmental
media training: coverage of the event