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Georgian protected areas to be announced among UNESCO World Heritage sites

Kolkheti National Park and wetland areas has been named among the Georgian areas that will be listed in the UNESCO World Heritage list. The Georgian Agency of Protected Areas (APA), together with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is now working to promote the following Georgian national parks and areas: Machakhela, Mtirala and Colchian National Parks; Kintrishi and Kobuleti protected areas.The project has been implemented by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture, Agency of Protected Areas and WWF Caucasian Representatives since 2017. The project is being co-financed by the Federal Ministry of Environmental Protection and Nuclear Safety of Germany and WWF.The Chairman of the Agency of Protected Areas, David Markozashvili underlined the importance of the project. The meeting was held under the frame of the " Georgian protected areas Kolkheti Forests and Wetlands to be announced among UNESCO World Heritage sites", which was attended by independent experts, local self-government and NGO representatives.    
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"Extended producer responsibility " to introduce

The introduction of the "Extended producer responsibility was discussed at the hotel "Holiday Inn". The Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture, Solomon Pavliashvili has been focused on issues related to the management of waste electronic and electrical equipment, manufacturer's liability law, funding mechanisms, schemes and monitoring system.The Chairman of the Committee on Environmental Protection and Natural Resources, Kakhaber Kuchava addressed the participants.The waste management code was adopted in 2014, which imposes new obligations to both public and private sector representatives, including introduction of the "Extended producer responsibility" principle in Georgia.According to the Code, from December 2019, the producers and marketers of the product should reduce waste production and its negative impact on the environment, they have taken the responsibility for waste recovery and disposal as well.This is the new principle and approach in Georgia. Its implementation requires not only the development of the relevant legislative base, but also raising of awareness and capacity building both in the state structures and private sector as well.The project is initiated by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture and is implemented by the UNDP, Swedish Government and organization "Georgia's Environmental Outlook" - GEO.The meeting was attended by more than 70 representatives of Georgian government, local self-governments, business companies, associations and trade chambers, NGOs and relevant projects.    
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Solomon Pavliashvili met with the representative of the World Bank

The Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture, Solomon Pavliashvili  met with the Head of Forestry Projects in the World Bank Agriculture and Environmental Services Department, Tuukka Castrén,.The sides discussed issues related to the improvement of governance in the forestry sector. Tuukka Castrén brought forward World Bank position and perspectives in the Forestry sector. He noted, that, there are opportunities to initiate and implement new programs in the forestry sector.In 2013-2017, with the financial support of the EU and World Bank, the project ENPI FLEG II, (ENPI East) «Forest Law Enforcement and Governance in the forest sector through European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument-2 in East Countries» aiming to promote sustainable management and protection of forests was implemented.The main directions of the program included the improvement of forest legislation and policy, sustainable use of forest resources, support forest inventory, forestry demonstration studies and capacity building.     
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The Minister got acquainted with the production of Briquettes in Kakheti

The Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture, Levan Davitashvili got acquainted with the production process of briquettes in village Matani, Akhmeta Municipality.The project of construction of briquettes enterprise (being under the authority of National Nursery) was implemented with the help of Greens Movement "Friends of the Earth" and UNDP. The Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture is working to promote ecologically clean fuel briquettes in the country."We aim to reduce pressure on forests. Therefore, it is very important to promote the development of alternative fuels. One of the best ways well known in Europe are briquettes  made of waste.The briquettes have a higher heat and energy capacity and are ecologically clean. It is important to replace firewood with briquettes, so its production will be encouraged by the state. Due to the changes made by the government, a number of enterprises are allowed to have an access to wastes in the woods, which will further improve the sanitation in forests" -said Levan Davitashvili.The Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture visited private enterprise "Kera" Ltd. and got acquinted with the production process.The briquet is made from waste in the woods and deliver 4-5 times more heat than dried firewood. The Minister delivered a packet of briquette as a symbolic gift to the kindergarten in the village, Alvani.The Minister was accompanied by the Deputy Minister of Environmental Protection and Agriculture Solomon Pavliashvili, Director of National Nursery, Revaz Bezhashvili, Governor of Kakheti, Irakli Kadagishvili, Head of the Forestry Agency and Forest Policy Department, as well as NGOs working on environmental issues.   
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Regional Advisory Board Meeting

The Head of the National Forestry Agency, Tornike Gvazava attended the meeting of the Regional Advisory Council on the (ENPI_ FLEG ll) - the Second Program aiming to improve forest law enforcement and governance in the Forestry sector. The meeting was held in Guria region. The program funded by the EU and the Austrian government has been implemented since 2013. The World Bank, the International Union of Nature Conservation (IUCN) and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) have been promoting the development of forestry sector. The participants discussed the achieved results, including forest inventory works and management plan in Chokhatauri Forest District, which was implemented in 2017 in 52 509 ha and forest management plan developed for the next 10 years.  The representatives of World Bank, WWF, IUCN, Local Self-Government, National Forestry Agency and Guria Forest Service attended the event.   
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Chestnut Forest Reclamation

The National Forest Agency, with the support of BP, plans to rehabilitate forests in Imereti region. Foreign experts got acquainted with the situation along with the specialists of the agency.The disease known as "chestnut cork cancer" is not spread only in Georgia, but across the world. Within the scope of the event, Zestafoni forest inventory has been already implemented. Furthermore, the study of disease and work on forest management plan document and forest ecosystem restoration project are already underway.Improvement of forest sanitation status and forest restoration measures from the recommendations developed by the agency specialists will start this year.Along with the Georgian experts the staff of the Austrian Forest Research Institute are involved in the research.  
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The processed wooden plank was found under the hay stock

The employees of Samtskhe-Javakheti Regional Division of Environmental Surveillance Department of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Agriculture revealed the fact of illegal transportation of timber. In Akhaltsikhe municipality, near the village Atskuri, the car was parked on the central motorway, visual inspection revealed hay stocks. As a result of thorough inspection, the department employees found a 13.2 m3 primary processed wooden plank.The driver failed to present a document confirming timber legality. The materials will be sent to Akhaltsikhe Regional Division for further reaction.