Oil and gas condensate production are the keystone of Kazakhstan economy and amounted to 51.2 million tons in 2003. Kazakhstan holds about 4 billion tons of proven recoverable oil reserves, many of them untapped, and 2,000 cu. km. of gas. Expansion is planned, to produce as much as 3 million barrels (477,000 cu. m.) per day by 2015, lifting Kazakhstan into the ranks of the world's top 10 oil-producing nations. This is why the country received high credits from international organizations. Accordingly sound is the economy, which first went under the typical dynamics of a transition country after the breakdown of the Soviet system. While its gross domestic product (GDP) in purchasing power parity (PPP) amounted to $4,089 per capita in 1990, in 1994 it slid 40 percent to $2,442.

Forests cover 3.75 percent of Kazakhstan's total territory and are not commercially used. The available agricultural land consists of 79,151 sq. mi. (205,000 sq. km.) of arable land and 235,908 sq. mi. (611,000 sq. km.) of land devoted to pastures and hay. Agriculture accounted for 13.6 percent of Kazakhstan's GDP in 2003. Kazakhstan is the sixth-largest grain producer in the world. Wheat, barley, cotton, rice, and livestock, especially sheep-breeding are the most important agricultural commodities. Agricultural land occupies more than 326,642 sq. mi. (846,000 sq. km.).


All General Circulation Models (GCMs) predict an increase in climate aridity, suggesting temperature increases from 7-12 degrees F (4-7 degrees C) under doubling carbon dioxide (CO2) rates 2050-75. Precipitation change is projected to between a 10 percent decrease to a 20 percent increase, and is expected to be redistributed. Decreased wheat yields and negative impacts on sheep-breeding productivity are expected due to grassland yield decrease and the direct impact of increases in duration of stable hot weather on sheep. Doubled CO2 levels would reduce water resources by about 20-30 percent in Kazakhstan. In the mountain areas the snow line will rise by 0.3-0.4 mi. (500-700 m.); mudflow activity will increase, with a reduction of the sub-humid zone for grain crop cultivation of about 6-23 percent. UKMO predicts the complete disappearance of the subhumid zone from Kazakhstan territory.


Kazakhstan ranks as the 30th largest greenhouse gas emitter in the world, with per capita emissions of 8.14471 CO2 equivalents per 1,000 people. It has been demonstrated that the energy share in 2005 was 78 percent, in second place was agriculture (8.4 percent), and the third source of emissions was industrial processes (6.7 percent). The wastes share amounts to 6.9 percent. The percentage share of the contribution of three basic gases with direct greenhouse effects in 2005 was the following: CO2, 77.4 percent; methane, 17.7 percent; and nitrous oxide, 4.9 percent.

Further sequestering of CO2 is planned to be achieved by increasing forests to 4.6 percent of land area by 2010 and to 5.1 percent by 2020, which would increase sequestration of about 6,000 Gg. Reducing arable areas on less productive land with simultaneous intensification in others, could sequester up to 674 Gg. Kazakhstan has a huge potential for energy saving in the power sector, especially by energy saving, and increasing energy efficiency, and the share of this sector already substantially decreased.

Adaptation strategies are long-term, market-based and oriented to external development. International assistance is required. Kazakhstan signed the United Nations framework Convention on Climate Change in June 1992 and ratified it in May 1995. In 1997, the government of Kazakhstan supported the World Bank Carbon Initiative on establishment of international carbon credits market and adopted a law on Energy Saving. In March 1999, Kazakhstan signed the Kyoto Protocol as a nonParty to Annex 1 of the UNFCCC and a non-Party to the Kyoto Protocol.

SEE ALSo: Glaciers, Retreating; Oil, Consumption of; Oil, Production of; Salinity.

BIBLIoGRAPHY. Stephan Harrison, "Kazakhstan: Glaciers and Politics," Open Democracy, www.opendemocracy. net/globalization-climate_change_debate/kazakhstan_ 2551.jsp; United Nations Environment Programme, Lake Balkash: http://www.grid.unep.ch/activities/sustainable/ balkhash/index.php; Climate Change Coordination Centre, http://www.climate.kz/eng/?m=html&cid=26; United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, "Initial National Communication of the Republic of Kazakh

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