Caspian Sea 2011
the construction of water supplies and sanitation systems and the rehabilitation of the Caspian Sea environment and its coastal territories. Current policy of Iran in the Caspian Sea region focuses mainly on the modernization of fish- ing ports with the aim of diversifying activities, improving operational efficiency and bringing benefits to local communities. A study aimed at developing an operational master plan for fish- ing harbours is in its final phase. Pressures on the Caspian Sea environment and its resources could be alleviated by improving the efficiency of the fishery industry and by diversifying economic activities among the local population. Another issue related to the development of Iran’s coastal areas is the creation of buffer zones along the shoreline, a move which is supported by presidential decree. The decree stipulates the removal of all physical barriers in the buffer zone in order to provide free access for the population and to reduce uncontrolled pollution sources to the Caspian Sea. Kazakhstan has adopted a number of policy documents relating to the Caspian Sea environ- ment. The programme of environmental protec- tion for 2008-2010 has a specific task in relation to the Caspian Sea: “2.4: Prevention of pollution of Caspian Sea shelf and adjoining areas”. The development programme relating to mineral re- sources in Kazakhstan for 2003-2010 lists the liq- uidation and conservation of oil and self-emis- sion hydrogeological wells among its tasks. The implementation of these measures will directly reduce pressures caused by the existing sources of pollution in the sea. Another set of policy issues is aimed at the improvement of the fishery sector. Measures for sustainable development of the agricultural in- dustrial complex of the Republic of Kazakhstan for 2009-2011, as well as the concept of develop- ment of fisheries for 2007-2015, are aimed at the production and economic efficiency of hatcheries and the rational use of water resources. This will
have positive impact on fish stocks and mitigate a decline in bioresources.
A policy project regarding the protection of oth- er Caspian Sea bioresources and included within a programme of conservation, ensures the ration- al use of water resources and fauna, and the de- velopment of a network of protected areas up to 2010. Another document, the Scientific Technical Programme “The complex of ecologic-epidemio- logical research of biocenosis of Caspian water areas and the development of measures for its improvement for 2008-2010”, ensures measures for a complex monitoring programme of water conditions, and prepares the way for an improve- ment in the environment. This will contribute to mitigating a reduction in biodiversity. Two documents set forth the environmental policy of Caspian Sea coastal areas. The envi- ronmental protection programmes of Mangis- tau (2008-2010) and Atyrau (2006-2008) regions are aimed at achieving an ecological balance— finding favorable living conditions for the local population while at the same time lessening the impact of man-made components on the environment. In general, these two policy docu- ments will contribute to a reduction of pres- sures on the environment. 7.3. Monitoring and compliance Monitoring involves the regular gathering of data on different aspects of the environment; it usually includes monitoring water quality, air pol- lution, species presence and numbers and many other relevant measurements. It is the first and most important part of a lengthy process of deci- sion making aimed at improving the environment and bioresource management. It is also impor- tant for measuring the implementation of politi- cal commitments already made. In the Caspian Sea region, the most impor- tant agreement is the Framework Convention for the Protection of the Marine Environment of the Caspian Sea and its four protocols—land- based sources of pollution; preparedness, re-
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