UNDP and EU join hands to promote sustainable energy in Turkmenistan

May 3, 2024

UNDP and EU join hands to promote sustainable energy in Turkmenistan

Turkmenbashi, 1-3 May 2024 – Within the framework of the joint initiative "Sustainable Energy Days in Turkmenistan," organized by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) project "Sustainable Cities in Turkmenistan: Integrated Green Urban Development in Ashgabat and Avaza” and the European Union (EU) - funded project “Sustainable Energy Connectivity in Central Asia (SECCA)”, the Ministry of Energy of Turkmenistan and the Hiyakimlik of Turkmenbashi city, with the support of the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan, a series of events aimed at raising awareness about the benefits of sustainable energy, promoting the use of environmentally friendly technologies, and strengthening cooperation in the energy sector were held in Turkmenbashi city. 

On May 1, an award ceremony was held to recognize the most energy-efficient school in Turkmenbashi, accompanied by an environmental campaign for schoolchildren. School No. 10 of Turkmenbashi city has been awarded the title of "the most energy-efficient school." The decision was made by the jury, consisting of representatives from UNDP, SECCA, the Institute of Energy of Turkmenistan, the Ministry of Education of Turkmenistan, the Ministry of Energy of Turkmenistan, the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan and the Turkmenbashi city Hiyakimlik. The evaluation was based on an assessment of schools' energy efficiency practices, including energy consumption, rational use of water, and waste management policies.

As part of the ongoing efforts to promote environmental awareness and sustainable practices among the youth of Turkmenistan, an environmental action for schoolchildren took place immediately following the Award Ceremony. The purpose of the event was to involve young people in activities that emphasize the significance of environmental stewardship and promote eco-friendly habits.


The environmental action started with an exhibition and an award ceremony honoring the winners of a drawing competition for junior schoolchildren themed “Nature is our common home!” and a similar competition for high school students themed “Our choice is green energy! Our future is a green planet!”. Additionally, a competition titled “Robotics for the Benefit of the Environment” was held. These activities showcased the creativity and innovation of the young participants, highlighting their commitment to environmental sustainability and technological advancements.

The programme began with an introductory lecture conducted by UNDP specialists titled “Nature is our common home.” This engaging talk was aimed at familiarizing schoolchildren with the importance of preserving the environment and the impact that human activities have on the natural world. Through interactive discussions, schoolchildren learned about the importance of biodiversity, conservation, and the role they can play in creating a more sustainable future. Children also got acquainted with the “Climate Box”, an interactive learning toolkit on climate change.

The educational session was followed by a series of mini-sports competitions that allowed children to spend time in the fresh air interactively, developing a sense of community and teamwork. The winners received prizes from SECCA and UNDP.


The key highlight of the event was a bicycle ride through the city's scenic areas, promoting the use of environmentally friendly transport. New bicycles for this school were provided by a UNDP project. This ride not only encouraged physical activity but also highlighted the benefits of choosing bicycles over motor vehicles to reduce carbon emissions. Schoolchildren, along with teachers and event organizers, cycled through designated routes, demonstrating their commitment to the greening of Turkmenistan. 

The event concluded with a symbolic tree planting ceremony. Children and distinguished guests, including local officials and environmental experts, planted trees together, symbolizing their joint effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote sustainable development and eco-friendly behavior among youth.

On May 2, an international conference titled "Climate Change – Challenges and Solutions for Sustainable Energy" was held with the participation of about 70 delegates from Turkmenistan, the European Union (EU), and other Central Asian (CA) countries. The purpose of the conference was to discuss strategies for advancing sustainable energy and share best practices in this area.  

Delegates from different countries and organizations presented their experiences in implementing sustainable energy policies. Experts from the UNDP shared their views on the use of solid waste for generating electrical and thermal energy and discussed zero-waste initiatives.

On May 3, a series of lectures on energy efficiency and renewable energy development were conducted for students at the Institute of Engineering, Technical and Transport Communications and the Turkmenbashi Maritime Secondary Vocational School. The lectures were designed to increase awareness and knowledge among specialists from Avaza hotels, and students from the participating institutions on implementing innovative energy-efficient technologies and discuss the role of the transport sector in the energy landscape. The lectures were followed by a round table on sustainable energy issues, offering an interactive platform for the Institute's teachers and students to discuss contemporary challenges and explore solutions in sustainable energy.


The UNDP project "Sustainable Cities in Turkmenistan: Integrated Green Urban Development in Ashgabat and Avaza”, funded by the Global Environmental Fund (GEF) and UNDP and implemented jointly with the Ministry of Environmental Protection of Turkmenistan, is aimed at promoting the development of sustainable cities and reducing the negative impacts of urban growth in the country, such as reducing greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution, impact of increasing energy consumption and household waste, as part of the country’s efforts to achieve the socio-economic development goals. Website: undp.org/Turkmenistan.

The EU-funded project “Sustainable Energy Connectivity in Central Asia (SECCA)” (from March 2022 to March 2026) aims to promote a sustainable energy mix in the Central Asia region in line with EU best practices. To fulfil its mission, SECCA strives to provide for strengthened and more inclusive policy, regulatory and institutional framework for the transition to a sustainable energy system, within a regional context, and focuses on contributing to the fulfilment of international human rights commitments in CA countries, including equal access to energy, and supporting gender inclusive policies and legislation for energy efficiency (EE) and renewable energy (RE). The project activities include capacity development for EE and RE deployment, awareness raising on EE and RE, and improving investment climate for EE and RE projects. Website: www.secca.eu.