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Central Asian Countries Initiative for Land Management (CACILM) II

Integrated natural resources management in drought-prone and salt-affected agricultural production landscapes in Central Asia and Turkey.

Central Asia is an arid to semi-arid region, where the majority of the area (68%) is occupied by sparsely vegetated deserts and grass/scrublands. It includes Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan countries. The major agro-ecological regions for crop production include irrigated cropland, rain-fed cropland, pastures, steppes and mountains. In the last 50 years, the population of the Central Asian region has tripled. The Central Asian region is facing serious food security challenges with the need to feed larger number of people amongst increasingly limited water resources and highly variable climatic conditions. Owing to its geographical and climatic characteristics, aggravated by impacts of climate change and anthropogenic pressures, Central Asian countries and Turkey are severely affected by desertification, land degradation and drought (DLDD). The significant environmental stressors on agricultural lands are leading to declining productivity of agro-ecosystems and reduced livelihood security in production landscapes.

Following the success and the lesson learned from the previous “Central Asian Countries Initiative for Land Management (CACILM), a second phase of “CACILM” is supported by GEF and is implemented by FAO (FAOSEC and AGL). The overall objective of “CACILM 2” is to scale up integrated natural resources management (INRM) in drought prone and salt affected agricultural production landscapes in the Central Asian countries and Turkey. Adoption of integrated landscape management approaches and INRM practices should help stabilize and even reverse trends of soil salinization, reduce erosion, improve water capture and retention, increase the sequestration of carbon, and reduce loss of agrobiodiversity, thereby reducing the desertification trend in terms of extent and severity.

The project is structured as a program with one multi-country component addressing shared priorities at multi-county level, two components at national level ensuring national implementation in selected production landscapes/land use systems, and one M&E component. The needs of disadvantaged groups, gender and age issues are given consideration throughout the project’s implementation, monitoring and evaluation.

Enhanced synergies of INRM/SLM interventions in the region to broaden the CACILM partnership an enhance support from CA countries and Turkey, donors, NGOs, civil society and the private sector across the region. Enhance links and collaboration with the global Knowledge Management platform of the DS-SLM project, the Eurasian Soil Partnership, and other international partners, forums and processes, with a view to developing a multi-country process and program, with the participation of the Interstate Commission on Sustainable Development (ICSD), the Central Asia Regional Environmental Centre (e.g. CAREC), international research centres, such as CGIAR (ICBA and ICARDA, Bioversity International, IWMI), University of Central Asia (UCA), WOCAT, ZOI and development agencies, such as GIZ, aimed at the restoration of degraded lands in Central Asia and Turkey. Ensure synergies with obligations under various conventions (UNCCD, UNBD, UNFCCC, and Convention on sustainable development in CA) and initiatives on issues related to SLM and climate change. SLM Policy dialogue is designed to involve political and decision making representatives of Central Asian countries and Turkey and representatives of main donor organizations to enhance the political support for INRM/SLM at the regional and national levels.

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