Local Communities’ Needs Assessment and the Climate Change in Uzbekistan. How can we work towards achieving results already today?

In October 2020, seminars on green technologies and needs’ assessment of the local communities in the context of climate change took place in the Kanimekh district of the Navoi region, the Chimion settlement of the Fergana region as well as in the Korasokol village of the Yazavan region of Uzbekistan.

During the trainings, the participants representing various CSOs, local business, and farmers, and makhalla members discussed solar parabolic kitchen technologies and autonomous water supply. They expressed a desire to create a separate network for the dissemination of affordable green technologies with the participation of all stakeholders from the region.

The seminars were held within the framework of the project "Innovative Uzbekistan", implemented by ODB Brussels (Belgium) in partnership with Eco Forum of Uzbekistan (Uzbekistan), the New Diplomacy (Czech Republic) with funding from the European Union.

How to boil water and cook food without using gas, firewood or electricity?

Representatives of makhalla citizens' gatherings and 20 local women and girls participated in the training sessions in the Kanimekh district to study and discuss available technologies of solar parabolic kitchens. Invited trainers showed how to manufacture the device and apply it on daily basis in the farms and individual households.

Note: Since ancient times, the makhalla has been a powerful centre of culture in Uzbekistan, an effective tool of self-government for citizens, the closest structure to the people, a unique institution of civil society. The role of the makhalla has always been crucial for preservation of the national and universal values, culture, way of life and mind set as well as spirituality of the multinational Uzbek people transmitted from generation to generation. (source: https://gk-usbekistan.de/ru/)

“Our target group are women and youth who are largely involved in sustaining households”, says the Director of TUMARIS Centre, the seminar trainer Natalia Narbekova. “We decided to introduce theт into “green” technology of parabolic kitchen, or solar concentrator, to help them ease the cooking process and decrease harmful impact on the environment at the same time” she said. “Thanks to this device one can boil water or cook, without using gas, would fire or electricity. It is really easy to make such a furnace yourself out of an old parabolic antenna”, stressed Mrs Narbekova. “Today’s training gave us an opportunity to reach people with this information. We also demonstrated video and other materials about the climate change, and those measures that are being taken by the governments of Central Asian states to prevent the negative consequences”. The organisers hope the participants will be able to apply these technologies in their daily life.

Here are some quotes from the participants: 

  • “I had no idea that it was possible to turn an unnecessary parabolic antenna into a solar kitchen and cook your family dinner”
  • “There is no gas supply in our village, we have to cook in the hearth, which involves picking up and chopping wood, and removing ash and garbage after cooking is done. At the seminar, we learned and now can apply cleaner technology at home. "


When concluding the seminar Natalia Narbekova expressed her confidence that this event will mark the start for a successful civic education campaign in the field of green technologies. The intention of the organisers is to hold such events in the future to deepen knowledge and build capacity of the local activists and population.

Plastic and earthenware irrigation, mulching and drip irrigation - what can be done locally with an unstable water supply?

Local water supply and water conservation are in great demand in Fergana Valley (the Fergana and Namangan regions of Uzbekistan), especially taking into account climate change consequences and unstable water supply from neighbouring states. At the workshops that took place in the villages of Chimion and Korasokol, relevant inexpensive and accessible practices were demonstrated. Among them, irrigation from plastic and earthen vessels, basic mulching practices and solar drip irrigation devices.

"To water your plants locally, one does not necessarily need to install expensive and complicated irrigation systems. It is enough to use middle size clay jugs that will be able to water your garden not nearly worse,” says Honoured Associate Professor, Ph.D. Ibraghimzhon Domuladzhanov, a trainer of the project. “The method of local irrigation with the help of clay jugs was in use several millennia ago helping people in arid regions to solve the problem of water scarcity. Indeed, with this method of irrigating plants, much less water is required."

Master-classes on manufacture of irrigation systems from plastic and clay vessels, as well as solar drip irrigation conducted by Ibraghimzhon Domuladzhanov attracted great attention by the participants.

According to the head of a non-profit nongovernmental organisation SHAHIMARDON OBOD SOUV, Muidindzhon Norboboev, the solar irrigation system retains a significant amount of water when irrigating and growing plants. This helps to reduce the need for water up to 10 times if compared to other traditional irrigation systems.

Water obtained through such a system comes out without salt, nitrates and other contaminants. The device can also be used to desalinate seawater in a similar way. Especially with frequent droughts, this method can help farmers to increase the productivity of land with fewer resources used.


Plastic has become an available material now and such an irrigation and distillation system can work even in desert areas during prolonged droughts. Plants can also be warmed with this technique in cooler weather.

“The use of mulching method helps to reduce costs and save time when it comes to watering the plants as well as improves the quality of fruit and vegetables grown. All that help to save a family budget”, stressed the head of the CSO "Korasokol Obi Hayot" Sobirzhon Makhmudov during his session. "The methods and technologies demonstrated at the seminars do not require serious expenditures for their production, and will have a positive impact on the economic situation of the local households and women in Uzbekistan villages."

Additionally, during the participatory community appraisal (PCA) sessions, that took place as part of the trainings in the outlined regions, the following local problems have been identified:

The Kanimekh district of the Navoi region:

  • lack of fresh water for watering vegetable gardens;
  • lack of plants, trees;
  • oxidation of groundwater and soil;
  • the need to sort waste;
  • termites.


The Yazavan district of the Fergana region

  • soil salinity;
  • the need to clean horizontal drainage (zour);
  • lack of water with acceptable salinity;
  • the need to drill a new well to provide drinking water;
  • there is no sewerage network in the region that would improve the infrastructure of the village.


The Fergana district of the Fergana region:

  • high hardness of drinking water;
  • poor condition of the sewerage system;
  • insufficient water for irrigation;
  • it is necessary to change the attitude of people towards the natural environment to a friendlier approach;
  • planting drought-resistant ornamental and fruit trees.

The Mingbulak district of the Namangan region:

  • lack of drinking and irrigation water;
  • problem (lack of) with paved roads;
  • lack of fuel (gas, coal);
  • air pollution from the local poultry farm;
  • the need to cleanse horizontal drainage systems.

During the discussion, the participants of the seminars arrived at the decision to create a network for the dissemination of accessible green technologies with the participation of all stakeholders - local communities, local authorities and government, non-governmental non-profit organizations, small and medium-sized businesses, institutes and schools.

Text: Regina Chigareva
Photo: Mukhayo Latipova, Salima Abdullaeva

The content is solely the responsibility of ODB Brussels and does not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union. " 

This material has been prepared within the framework of the project "Innovative Uzbekistan" implemented by ODB Brussels (Belgium) in partnership with Eco Forum of Uzbekistan (Uzbekistan), the New Diplomacy (Czech Republic) funded by the European Union.

ODB Brussels