Transnational nomination of cold winter deserts of Central Asia as UNESCO World Heritage
The cold winter deserts of Central Asia are not yet included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. A recent study by IUCN emphasizes that they have the potential to be included.
Against this background, the CADI project invited 25 experts from Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan to a workshop on the island of Vilm from 28th till 31th of January 2020 to discuss the possible nomination of the biome. The preparation and support of a nomination of the cold winter deserts are one of the main goals of the CADI project.
As a result of the workshop, the participants of the three countries have agreed about a joint declaration to initiate a serial transnational nomination to be submitted in February 2022. Through the joint nomination, the nature conservation of the sites, the cross-border management, and regional cooperation as a whole are to be strengthened.
One year before the planned submission of nomination documents, in February 2021 the involved countries Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan have added the site “Cold Winter Deserts of Turan” to their national tentative lists. The serial, transnational World Heritage Site comprises a total of 9 protected areas, among others in the deserts of Aralkum, Karakum, Kyzylkum, and Ustyurt.