Review of Rangeland Stewardship in Central Asia Balancing Improved Livelihoods, Biodiversity Conservation and Land Protection

Author

IAUB Member

Abstract

The book is an ambitious attempt to cover a very wide range of topics related Biodiversity Conservation and Land Protection and to serve the interests of a wide variety of plants, ecosystems, managements, rangelands and livestock. Central Asia is vast, and the environmental diversity reflects the contrasts that give rise within the region of the coldest and hottest deserts, extensive steppe, grasslands and rangelands, alpine meadows, glacier fields, and mountains and plains. It is this great variation in geography, topography, and climate that provides the rich and unique diversity found in the region’s ecosystems. There is great disparity too in the ethnicity of its peoples and the economic status of the various countries within the region. The pressures on these rich natural resources (including water from the high mountains) and environmental systems generally have, however, been increasing over the past few decades. Rapid population growth, urbanization, rising economic output, and more consumptive lifestyles, coupled with increasing incidence of poverty, have all contributed to the region’s struggle to adjust to the market economy and the demands of the increasingly disenfranchised citizens, especially those on or just above the poverty line. Sustainable use of rangelands is considered a key component of the ADB (Asian Development Bank)/GEF approach. Development of a land ethic that promotes better long-term management is central to this effort. Sharing and dissemination of experiences in sustainable rangeland management gleaned over many years by local and foreign experts whose knowledge of these Central Asian countries is unsurpassed is a vital part of this effort. This book is a significant and most valuable contribution to the knowledge sharing that has been promoted and implemented through the ADB/GEF partnership.

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