Altyn Emel, Barsakelmes added to UNESCO World Heritage List

Two more Kazakh ecosystems have been inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Along with Kazakhstan, an application for inclusion of the Altyn Emel National Park and the Barsakelmes Nature Reserve was submitted by Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan as part of the transnational nomination “Cold Winter Deserts of Turan.”

Earlier, Altyn Emel and Barsakelmes received the status of UNESCO biosphere reserves. These desert areas have some of the world’s extreme fluctuations between maximum and minimum air temperatures. At the same time, they are a habitat for rare wildlife and plant species, which clearly demonstrates the evolution and adaptation on the planet, as noted by scientists.

“We expect that the new international status of Altyn Emel and Barsakelmes will draw increased attention to the importance of in-depth scientific research and effective conservation measures for Kazakhstan’s natural ecosystems. We also hope that this will bolster its potential for developing sustainable and responsible tourism,” Askar Abdrakhmanov, Kazakhstan’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, said.

Kazakhstan’s properties inscribed on UNESCO lists include six sites on the World Cultural and Natural Heritage List, 13 elements on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, 15 sites on the Network of Biosphere Reserves, three items on the Memory of the World Register, and 25 dates on the List of UNESCO Observances.