I would like to express my appreciation for the joint cooperation of the Ministry of Agriculture and Protection of Environmental of Turkmenistan and Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) for holding this Conference and addressing such important issue.
Climate change, with impacts on crops performance as direct impact and increase in temperature, change in precipitation patterns, changes in frequency and intensity of climatic extreme events such as flood, drought, sand and dust storms, negative effect on water availability pests and diseases outbreak, and alien invasive species rise, all as indirect impacts, has overshadowed food security in all its four dimensions, meaning availability, accessibility, utilization, and stability.
So that, it has exposed all the vulnerable groups in the north and the south countries to risk, in different scales, both from the economic and health aspects. The challenge of food insecurity has even hindered the achievement of sustainable development goals, especially poverty alleviation, elimination of hunger and malnutrition, gender equality and reduction of inequalities.Iran, being in arid and semi-arid climate with estimations of temperature increase above the average global temperature, is facing more and more environmental problems caused by climate change. Despite the imposed economic, technology and knowledge sanctions and the present unequal conditions, the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran has put on the agenda the improvement of the supply chain process, increasing soil fertility of agricultural lands, optimal management of pastures and development of greenhouses cultivation.
By now, the country's food security law to target the ongoing measures in order to strengthen the country's food security and remove barriers to crop production, as land use, supporting farmers and crop producers, defining a comprehensive system of supply and demand is in the process of approval by the country's Consultative Assembly. In addition, the state Natural Resources and Watershed Management Organization (NRWO), has commenced “Planting One Billion Seedlings Initiative” in current year in cooperation with FAO to combat desertification and extend forests in the framework of a four-year plan This plan is initiated in order to fulfill the country's Clean Air Law and the country's voluntary commitment to the UNCCD in line with the LDN goal.
Considering various social, economic and cultural benefits of afforestation, the plan is also aimed to achieve the ecological targets as restoring and extending forests and urban green spaces by 1.44 million ha controlling 170 million tons of dust emission in source area absorbing 150 million tons of greenhouse gases reducing soil erosion by 25 million tons per year producing about 2 billion cubic meters of freshwater, as regard to forest role on water cycle.
All of these aforementioned targets will contribute to biodiversity conservation and reducing climate change impacts. Finally, by considering the need for capacity building through improving the technical knowledge of experts and the general awareness, especially of local communities, the need to prioritize adaptation to climate change by keeping in mind the principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities (CBDR), as well as the given commitment by developed countries to finance and transfer technology to developing countries, we emphasize the key role of international organizations in developing the communication channels, knowledge management and knowledge transfer, as well as introducing best practices and lessons learned.
At the end, I would like to thank Turkmenistan for its good hospitality.