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The 4th Central Asian Festival of Eco-journalists was held this year in Uzbekistan from 9-16 November. As part of the festival, a four-day master-class for Uzbekistan journalists was organized by UNEP/GRID-Arendal in partnership with the International In-Service Training Centre for Journalists in Tashkent. The environmental media training brought together about twenty environmental journalists. Facilitated by John Bennett (Bennett & Associates) and Ieva Rucevska (UNEP/GRID-Arendal), the journalists worked side by side with senior environmental reporters Alex Kirby (BBC) and Kieran Cooke (independent journalist). Under the theme 'environment and security', the journalists investigated two stories - one on environmental and health impacts related to the Almalyk Mining and Smelting Combine, and the other on environmental and water problems caused by Chardarya water reservoir. Investigating the stories, the participants refined their skills in story conception and organization, selecting information sources, interviewing techniques, and presentation of stories to editors. 

The festival was organized by local environmental NGOs, supported by the National Festival Coordinators from five countries, UNDP and UNEP/GRID-Arendal. Besides a national and regional competition for the best environmental film, TV and radio programme, and newspaper article, this year the team of Environment and Security Initiative introduced the special nomination for journalists who addressed the issues of environmental risks to human security.  At the closing ceremony, attended by the Ministry of the Environment, an international jury awarded prizes to twenty-seven journalists (list of the winners rus/eng).

Environmental and water problems caused by Chardarya water reservoir: coverage of the case study by participants of the media training

Раковая опухоль водных артерий Центральной Азии (Сергей Наумов, свободный журналист)

Рукотвоное море человеческой деятельности (Зульфия Расули)

Uzbeks say enough water for all (by Alex Kirby, BBC)

The Almalyk Mining and Smelting Combine: coverage of the case study by participants of the media training

Алмалыкский металлургический комбинат (Каримова Махбуба)

Колокол Алмалыкского горно-металлургического комбината (Нигматова Ирода)

Жолтые облака (Онбаева Юлбуз)

«Мы из Алмалыка» (Пардакул Туракулов)

Uzbeks promise smelter clean-up (by Alex Kirby, BBC)

Additional stories:

Snow leopard project faces finish (by Alex Kirby, BBC)