Championing climate-smart agrotechnologies in Kazakhstan

September 12, 2022
Photo: UNDP Kazakhstan/Batyr Aubakirov

Japan becomes newest and the largest partner to UNDP’s next phase of the Climate Promise: from Pledge to Impact and provides significant climate funds to Kazakhstan to help it deliver on its national climate pledge.

UNDP’s Climate Promise is the largest global climate and development offer of support to countries on their national pledges to the Paris Agreement. In Kazakhstan, the initiative has been supporting the Ministry of Ecology, Geology and Natural Resources on several fronts: to advance its climate agenda; to create a legal framework for the national GHG inventory system; to provide trainings on the GHG emission inventory for experts, including experts from business enterprises; to develop a road map for the implementation of adaptation-related nationally determined contribution (NDC) components; and to raise public awareness on climate change adaptation.

In their revised NDCs, Kazakhstan committed to reduce its economy-wide greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) for all sectors, including agriculture, by between 15 percent and 25 percent by 2030 compared with 1990 levels. Kazakhstan’s economy is highly carbon-intensive and GHG emissions continue to grow steadily, with the agriculture sector accounting for 9.1 percent of GHG emissions. This  points to insufficient progress in achieving the NDC emissions reductions announced under the Paris Agreement.

Therefore, currently, Kazakhstan is working on the Strategy for Carbon Neutrality until 2060. Key measures include the phasing out of coal combustion; a significant increase in the share of renewable energy sources in electricity generation; expansion of carbon capture utilization and storage (CCUS) technologies; the use of hydrogen; increased energy efficiency; the implementation of a programme to plant two billion trees; and expansion of organic agriculture, sustainable land livestock and water management.

Photo: UNDP Kazakhstan/Batyr Aubakirov

The recently launched Japan-UNDP project, totalling US$974,408, is to forge new pathways for Kazakhstan on the implementation of its climate plans.

The project aims to increase agricultural resilience of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to climate change; to promote low carbon production; and to introduce climate-smart agriculture technologies that could also help raise productivity while simultaneously addressing the climate change crisis. More that 1,000 farmers are expected to directly benefit from the project.

Specifically, the project is to demonstrate new technologies in renewable energy, digitalization for water use and proper drought control for agricultural SMEs that can be successfully scaled up on most farms.

Key activities will focus on improving the existing KazHydroMet surveillance system, both in digital formats and through the installation of new modern equipment, and on changes in the ways of interacting between KazHydroMet, the local authorities and farmers.