Central Asian Water
Water – fuel for conflict and source of peace
As in the rest of the world, water is an indispensable necessity of life for people in Central Asia and an essential prerequisite for economic development. Yet in this region, home to snow-covered peaks as well as deserts, this precious resource is scarce and unevenly distributed. In addition, agriculture and industry in several countries compete for water resources, a situation that will only become more aggravated in the future due to climate change and population growth. It is clear now that the existing conflicts of interest can only be resolved through the joint effort of all Central Asian countries. Science can make an important contribution to this process by providing information and methods for optimizing water management.
CAWa-Project aim: Data and models for sustainable water management
Sustainable water management requires sound, reliable data. Data on water reserves and the use of water in Central Asia must therefore be collected consistently across the region. This information can be used to produce future scenarios and strategies for sustainable water management. CAWa Network partners collect this data and develop methods for analysing it. The project’s broad-based, interdisciplinary approach includes using hydrological models, satellite remote sensing and information and communications technology. Regional organizations like the International Fund for Saving the Aral Sea (IFAS) and the Scientific Information Centre of the Interstate Commission on Water Coordination (SIC ICWC) as well as national institutions such as the hydrometeorological services, universities and research institutes are part of the network. Additionally, project partners work closely with the United Nations, the European Union and GTZ, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (German Technical Cooperation).
The CAWa partners
The research network “Water in Central Asia” is funded by the German Federal Foreign Office in the framework of the implementation of the EU Central Asia strategy. CAWa was approved for a three year funding from 2008 till 2011.
The collaborating partners include the following institutions:
• German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) Potsdam, Germany
• Central Asian Institute for Applied Geosciences (CAIAG) Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
• German Aerospace Centre (DLR), Germany
• Centre for International Research on Environment and Development (ZEU), Justus-Liebig-University Gießen, Germany
• Julius-Maximilians-University Würzburg, Germany
• Alfred-Wegener-Institute for Polar and Marine Research (AWI), Germany
• Commission for Glaciology, Bavarian Academy of Sciences, Germany
• University of Idaho, U.S.A.
• German IHP / HWRP National Committee
• Scientific Information Center of the Interstate Commission for Water Coordination (SIC ICWC), Uzbekistan