IGRAC organised an expert meeting on groundwater management and development of a numerical model for the Pretashkent Aquifer, shared between Republic of Kazakhstan and Republic of Uzbekistan. The meeting took place in Tashkent on 17th and 18th May, kindly hosted by the State Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan for Geology and Mineral Resources and with excellent cooperation of the Committee of Geology and Subsoil Use of the Ministry for Investment and Development of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
The purpose of the Tashkent meeting was to discuss possibilities and agree the actions for development of a model for the Pretashkent Aquifer. It is believed that the model will improve understanding of groundwater regime and availability and assist in estimating/predicting the impact of human activities and climate change on the aquifer. This will allow better planning and management of groundwater resources, very precious for this region.
The joint activates of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan representatives and groundwater specialists are undertaken within the framework of the Strategy of Economic Cooperation between the republics of Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan for 2017 – 2019. The Pretashkent aquifer is also one of the 3 case studies of the Governance of Groundwater Resources in Transboundary Aquifers (GGRETA) project funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and executed by UNESCO-IHP and its partners, including IGRAC.
The meeting was very constructive and the modelling steps were discussed in detail and necessary further steps agreed. In coming month, the common expert team will prepare an overview of data availability and the needs for further development of the model. The report will subsequently be discussed and presented to the decision makers and donors. All parties in the meeting agreed about importance of collaboration on shared water resources and the modelling as an important tool to assist in this process.