June 13, 2016

REC Caucasus Side Event at UNECE 8th Ministerial Conference “Environment for Europe”


On June 8, 2016 in Batumi, Georgia in the frames of UNECE 8th Ministerial Conference “Environment for Europe”  Regional Environmental Centre for Caucasus (RECC), UNCCD secretariat and GIZ organized the side event at hotel Hilton on Land Degradation Neutrality - a contribution to sustainable growth.

The side event was opened by the Deputy Minister of the Environment and Natural Resources Protection of Georgia Mr. Besarion Abashidze.

The side event was moderated by Mr. Alain Retier.

The following projects were presented at the side-event: Impact of Land Degradation on Central Asian economies; Applying Landscape and Sustainable Land Management (L-SLM) for mitigating land degradation and contributing to poverty reduction in rural areas. The last one is the project that is to implemented in Georgia, Mr. S. Ersin Esen UNEP, as the implementing agency representative, has made the presentation.

The project “Applying Landscape and Sustainable Land Management (L-SLM) for mitigating land degradation and contributing to poverty reduction  in rural areas” is financed by GEF and executing by REC Caucasus on behalf of MOENRP, supported by UNEP.

The project consists of the 3 following components:

  1. Developing policy, regulatory and institutional reforms in the field of landscape / sustainable land management;
  2. Demonstration of the benefit of implementing best practices of landscape-land resource management;
  3. Improving National capacities and awareness management.

As a result of project implementation, Georgia will have made legislative changes in the field of sustainable land management.

For the first time in the country, a web-portal will be created for matters related to land degradation, which will be accessible for government officials as well as any other interested party.

Degradated soil protection activities are being planned to be held in three municipalities.

The project also plans to raise awareness of decision makers as well as community based organizations.

The UNCCD representative Ms. Jamal Annagylyjova presented the Vision of Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN).

Mr. Hannes Etter - GIZ representative presented the ELD initiative “The Economics of Land Degradation: Unlocking investments in sustainable land management for the SDGs.

Poster Marketplace was organized during the side-event to introduce the following topics.

  • LDN: how to achieve and how to monitor;
  • LDN in Belarus;
  • ELD Case Study in Central Asia;
  • ELD Case study in Georgia.

During the side event the Panel discussion was held on relevance of SLM for Green Economy.

The summery and closing remarks were made by Ms. Sophiko Akhobadze, REC Caucasus Director. Ms. Akhobadze highlighted the importance of cooperation between the all above initiatives to promote the Land degradation neutrality in our region, due to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.