Research Handbook on International Water Law
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Research Handbook on International Water Law

Edited by Stephen C. McCaffrey, Christina Leb and Riley T. Denoon

The Research Handbook on International Water Law surveys the field of the law of shared freshwater resources. In some thirty chapters, it covers subjects ranging from the general principles operative in the field and international groundwater law to the human right to water and whether international water law is prepared to cope with climate disruption. The authors are internationally recognized experts in the field, most with years of experience. The Research Handbook is edited by three scholars and practitioners whose publications and work deal with the law of international watercourses.
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Chapter 24: Central Asia: the Aral Sea basin

Dinara R. Ziganshina


The Aral Sea basin and its riparian countries – Afghanistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan – are faced with growing and competing water demands, decreasing availability and degradation of their water resources, exacerbated by the impacts of climate change. In addition to political will and technical knowledge, sound legal and institutional frameworks are among the essential tools in dealing with these challenges. The existence of treaties and regional institutions is a significant achievement, placing the Aral Sea basin ahead of most other transboundary basins of the world where neither treaties nor river basin organisations exist. But these treaties and institutions should be further strengthened to ensure the sustainable management of the resource and the peaceful change in its regulation when circumstances and needs demand.

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