Kaakha, 6 November 2018: United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in collaboration with Global Environment Facility (GEF) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Management of Turkmenistan have conducted the round table on the presentation of results, environmental benefits recommendations for the operation of the newly constructed the Khivaabad-Kaahka waterway. The event was held in the framework of the joint UNDP/GEF project “Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy for Sustainable Water Management in Turkmenistan”.
The round table were attended by representatives of local authorities on water supply of Kaakha, the Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources, the Nature and Land Protection Committee, the Sanitary and Epidemiological Service of Ahal province, the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan and other government departments.
The participants agreed that although the water pipeline was commissioned in April of this year, it has already begun to have a positive effect. In a closed pipeline system, water losses, caused by filtration and evaporation were reduced to zero. The steady flow of water through the constructed water supply system has already made it possible to switch off a significant number of electric pumps, which are currently used to pump water for the residents of Kaakhka. There will also be reduced maintenance costs for pumps, which typically operate almost year-round. As a result, turning off pumps has a positive environmental impact in the form of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
During the meeting there were identified several additional positive economic, environmental and social benefits:
1) Water from a mountain stream flowing through a water line has cleaner and better qualities and a positive effect on people's health.
2) Additional water resources that were previously simply lost will help cultivate additional irrigated land for agricultural production. This will create new jobs for residents who wish to engage in agricultural production and will allow them to supply more fruit and vegetables to the local market, as well as produce more grains and other crops.
3) In a closed pipeline system, water is delivered more reliably to water treatment plants, since there was always the risk of destruction of the river bed by mudflows.
4) Reduced water filtration will eliminate the problem of rising groundwater levels.
5) Preservation of underground water sources due to the reduction of water pumping from wells.
At the end of the meeting, the participants expressed their gratitude to the UNDP for initiating and implementing such an ambitious project, which has obvious economic, social and environmental benefits.