Albeit many problems and constraints in the basin, local residents are keen to solve them
The most importantly, local residents do support the River Basin Council’s proposed actions.
The territory of Mongolia is divided into 29 river basins. Establishment of the River Basin administrations those are to manage conservation of these river basins has been complete throughout the country. One of the administrations is Khyargas Lake-Zavkhan River Basin administration in Altai Sayan region has recently completed consultation and discussion of its draft management plan. To ensure efficiency of any proposed undertakings, constructive planning is inevitably required. In particular, conservation efforts will be more efficient if these proposed actions are optimally addressed through a management plan. Pursuant to this approach, the administration “Khyargas Lake-Zavkhan River Basin drafted its management plan and submitted it to the Ministry of Environment and Green Development for review. Drafting of the management plan was greatly assisted by the WWF-Mongolia Programme office. Development of a plan is a task. More important, however, than the document itself, is to actually put the plan in practice. Recognized that public awareness on the draft management plan is a priority, the drafters organized the first campaign for local communities on June 2-7, 2014. The event was organized for local communities of 15 soums and three aimags located in the basin’s territory. In addition to the Basin’s administration staff members, the WWF Mongolia Altai Sayan’s regional office team participated in the event. During the public awareness, a discussion on potential solutions over the changes and constraints caused by water related concerns in the environment and socio-economic development was successfully organized.
In its covering area or size, Khyargas Lake-Zavkhan River Basin is listed at the third among the basins in the country. To such extent, there are a number of concerns for the basin. For instance, overgrazing is getting expanded due to increasing numbers of livestock residing the basin. Furthermore, desertification is likely to be expanded. The basin supports a small portion of forest. Natural regeneration rates of the forest stands in the basin have become low because of declining or over-matured stands mostly distributed. However, local communities are poorly aware of that forest stands provide for a main “target” of water heads. According to the basin’s administration staff members, they have many things to do including the task to improve public awareness on importance of forest stands for maintaining water heads. The most importantly, local residents do support the River Basin Council’s proposed actions. It gives us confidence in successful implementation of the management plan.