Monday, June 11, 2012 -
Kazakhstan is in danger of losing its glaciers by 2050, the Kazakh environmental minister said in parliament on Monday.
“This situation poses a serious threat to water supplies in agriculture, industry, and the population of our country,” the Minister of Environmental Protection Nurlan Kapparov said during the Majlis session.
Glaciers in the Tien Shan mountains had already disappeared by 25 to 35 percent by the end of the twentieth century, he noted.
Meanwhile, demand for water in the Kazakh state already exceeds supply by 20 percent. He urged the agricultural sphere to adopt more water-saving technologies, which he said can economize water use by 50 percent.
In his speech, Kapparov said Kazakhstan faced three critical problems in regards to the environment. First, the energy sector is a major source of ecological issues, and the country needs to switch to renewable energy and cleaner fuels for its power. Kazakhstan relies extensively on coal for its fuel.
Secondly, Kazakhstan must be wary not to deplete its natural resources – which, in addition to water, include forests and soil.
Finally, the minister highlighted the need to curb industrial emissions, 85 percent of which come from 42 major companies.