Blitz questions


One of the key trends of modern development is the focus on sustainable development, which implies harmonious development in terms of environmental, social and economic components.

The global community is focused on the "green" transformation of economic processes with an eye to environmental friendliness.
In 2020, the main theme of the World Economic Forum in Davos was the environment and the whole range of related issues.
According to the World Bank, Central Asian countries are more susceptible to climate impacts. ADB experts have estimated that the average damage from climate change in Central Asia will approach $ 547 million per year by 2050.
Kazakhstan's focus on creating an environmentally-oriented economy is enshrined in the concept of transition of the Republic of Kazakhstan to a "green economy" approved in 2013.
A number of laws and regulations were adopted (on energy saving and energy efficiency, support for renewable energy sources, etc.) in order to implement the ambitious goals of the concept. Economic incentive mechanisms and tools are also used.
We will discuss the relevance of the fight against climate change in the context of implementing the SDGs, introduction of innovative technologies in environmental and health protection, and clean water and sanitation in general in a flash session with youth leaders.
Note that the status of Leader-2030 and SDG-2030 Ambassador is voluntary and non-commercial. This status is claimed by citizens of the country who voluntarily undertake to contribute to raising awareness of the population of Kazakhstan about the goals, objectives, indicators of the SDG-2030 in accordance with the UN Resolution "Transforming our world for sustainable development in the period up to 2030" dated September 25, 2015. By their own example and professional activity, they implement the practical implementation of international legal norms within the state in order to fulfill their obligations.

The second part of the online conference was held in the format of a discussion with the SDG leaders among youth.

1. Yeldos Abakanov, Deputy Chairman of the Association of Environmental Organizations of Kazakhstan, SDG 13 Leader, was the first of the three speakers with a three-minute presentation. Saltanat Rakhimbekova's student provided data on climate change in Kazakhstan. 
According to him, if the global warming level is about 2%, then in Central Asia this figure can reach 5-7 degrees. 
"We may face such a concept as climate refugees in the future. When in those areas of the earth where there are fewer conditions for survival, people will move, and there is a risk of various problems", the Expert warned.

Blitz questions to Yeldos Abakanov:

- What measures should be taken to prevent the consequences of climate change?
- First of all, we all know that a new Environmental Code is being developed. And I am in favor of taking into account measures to adapt and mitigate the effects of climate change as part of the list of environmental measures. Low-carbon projects should be included in this list. These include gasification of public transport and development of infrastructure for electric vehicles, water-saving technologies, use of solar collectors, etc. It is necessary to develop similar centers. 
It is also necessary to consider the technical composition of these technologies.
Carbon taxes are a separate issue, as our export-oriented business may face a tax problem in the future.

- In what way should the concept of a green economy be revised?
- As part of the development of the green economy, we unfortunately do not see a differentiated approach in the context of regions. To achieve the indicators for renewable energy, low carbon, energy sector - we do not have regional coverage. Unfortunately, the regional feature is not taken into account. We need accurate indicators linked to economic mechanisms.

- Paris agreement. What is the role of society in promoting its implementation?
- Currently, internationa.organizations allocate various grants to the non-governmental sector in the implementation of certain pilot projects. For example, as part of the implementation of GEF products, we are participating in one of these projects. We have visited many regions and see these projects. We need to identify those that give accurate figures and approaches. This is the role of society. The society can make it easier for the state to finance projects.

Several other points that the speaker noted were related to the development of renewable energy potential and forest projects. Saltanat Rakhimbekova was concerned about the issue of saving resources and using the latest technologies in the construction of modern schools, which, according to analysts of a number of experts, could save up to 3 million a year by installing hydrolysis furnaces. These ideas were classified as so-called internal emission reduction projects - activities aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions or increasing greenhouse gas uptake that are implemented on the basis of a mechanism for internal reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and change the conditions identified in the baseline scenario.

That is, in this case, the same big business could act as an investor, joining in the implementation of social projects, and then the difference in the amount of greenhouse gas reduction would be taken into account. This would lead to a large-scale modernization of such facilities. 

2. Kirill Osin, Director of Eco Mangistau NGA, SDG 6 Leader, deals with clean water and sanitation. 

According to him, every third person worldwide does not have access to safe drinking water. 
"The pandemic has demonstrated the critical importance of sanitation. Kazakhstan is already experiencing a water shortage. We need to start implementing water conservation projects as soon as possible".

The second year of Eco Mangistau NGA in partnership with Almaty
Institute of Hydrology and Ecology with the support of "TCO" company has been working on a project to preserve the biodiversity of the Caspian. This project has an important aspect, which is to sanitize not only the sea coast, but also the bottom from marine debris and abandoned fishing nets. 

The sanitary condition of the coast directly affects the quality of water in a particular reservoir, as well as the state of biological resources. Despite significant progress made in terms of access to clean drinking water and sanitation, billions of people, mostly in rural areas, remain without basic services. 

Around the world, every third person does not have access to safe drinking water, says Ossin. This year's pandemic has demonstrated the critical importance of sanitation and hygiene and adequate access to clean water to prevent and contain diseases. 

Kazakhstan is already experiencing a water shortage, and therefore it is necessary to proactively start implementing water conservation projects as soon as possible. During this meeting, the Director of the NGO has already discussed a number of ideas for their discussion at the conference, but stopped at the issue of treatment facilities, deciding to discuss the topic of treated water at these facilities, which either drain into reservoirs or into evaporation fields. 

"Let's look at this water from the reverse side, as a resource and an opportunity to reduce the negative impact on reservoirs, let's look at it as a resource in order to reduce water consumption. What do I mean? The construction boom continues in many regions of the country. So why not start using this purified or additional purified water in the process of this construction in general, in the production of concrete in particular?" - Kirill Ossin asked his fellow ecologists from the relevant departments, thereby giving the opportunity to later discuss this topic to invited experts.

Blitz question to Kirill Osin:

- With Asel Baimukanova, SDG 14 Leader, Environmental Education Operator, protector of the Caspian seal population, you jointly deal with Caspian issues.  How does poaching affect the pollution of the Caspian sea?

Kirill Osin: Poachers use a cheap disposable nets. As a rule, these nets remain either on the shore, or, even worse, in the sea. This carries risks for biodiversity. Fish, crayfish, and seals get entangled in them. Last year we found nets in which birds become entangled. This is a big problem. 

As Osin noted in a conversation with the moderator after the conference, the issue of poaching remains very serious in relation to the Caspian region. Only in 2019, environmental damage in the amount of KZT 3 billion 670 million was prevented. This is data from the border service of the National Security Service.

Measures have been strengthened, but residents of the region are still waiting for real protection of the Caspian bioresources by all authorized bodies. 

3. Amir Kuat, winner of the state award "Halyk algysy" for his contribution to the fight against COVID-19, SDG 3 Leader, biotechnologist, invented the world's most efficient dry modular outdoor transformer, which will reduce the amount of electricity losses by 625 times.

"If we implement it in Kazakhstan, according to our calculations, only for coal, excluding gas, fuel oil and other raw materials that we use in power processing plants, we can save more than 3 million 133 thousand tons of coal, without reducing the level of electricity supply to the population. This will lead to lower emissions, lower water treatment costs, and lower operating costs".

Amir Kuat received Eurasian and Kazakhstan patents for the transformer. He believes that the invention will allow to modernize the country's power grid, reducing the theft of electricity to zero. The company plans to produce such transformers in Kazakhstan.

During development, Amir and his father applied some fundamental innovations that were not previously used in the electric power industry, borrowing some technologies from the automotive industry. According to him, the transformer solves the problem associated with overheating, which at one time fairly created difficulties for global companies Siemens, ABB, General Electrics, and Schneider Electric. 

According to him, such transformers allow to eliminate surges, drops in electricity are excluded. It reduces operating costs. The ownership economy is very profitable. Its payback period is less than three years.
Blitz question to Amir Kuat:

 - How will the adoption of the new Environmental Code affect the lives of Kazakhstanis? What do you think should be included in the new Environmental Code?

Amir Kuat: My personal vision: there are no stimulating factors at the legislative level. We have a Law on Energy Efficiency, but it is advisory in nature. It is necessary that market participants introduce innovations in their processes that make it possible to reduce harmful emissions and electricity consumption without fail.

The very last question, voiced at the conference on the Sustainable Development Goals, was related to the problem of weak information work, lack of understanding of the local executive bodies of the relevance of this issue, which we cannot but agree with, since in preparation for the conference the basic materials were mainly based on the latest interviews with leaders SDG youth and personal meetings with them. 

As I often said and wrote about it in my book “Green code for sustainable development” Saltanat Rakhimbekova: “In fact, the green economy is a way to solve global economic problems on a mutually beneficial and profitable basis. Unfortunately, green dialectics has not yet become a big science that covers a significant part of the life and worldview of society, although sooner or later we will come to this”. 

All speakers noted that it is necessary to work together in the tandem “science - public - business - state. And only through joint efforts will Kazakhstan be able to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, the goals under the Paris agreement. 

At the conference, it was later decided to make working meetings traditional, which will be held both online and offline at the site of the Institute of economic research. 

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Saved: 02.10.2020

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