Bloss's Blog

The European Union and Azerbaijan: Together for Environment

Protecting, preserving and improving the environment is essential for present and future generations. Azerbaijan, like other countries in the region, faces difficult challenges in air pollution, ensuring a clean and safe water supply and sustainable waste management. The European Union is working together with Azerbaijan to tackle climate change and to ensure a better quality of life for Azerbaijani citizens through the development of better environmental policies and greener investments in the modernisation of the social and technical infrastructure in cities.

  • Promoting decisions which respect both people and the environment:

Developing and implementing policies which ensure a high level of environmental protection and improve the quality of life of Azerbaijani citizens.

  • Protecting nature:

Building a joint network of protected areas across the Eastern Partnership region, the Emerald Network, and supporting the sustainable management of forests, crucial for better livelihoods in environmentally friendly technologies.

  • Managing vital resources better:

Improving the water management systems.

  • Delivering on climate policy goals:

Supporting the delivery of the goals set by the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.

Protecting biodiversity

Over the years, over-grazing has degraded mountain pastures in Azerbaijan, with impacts on the broader ecosystem and the farming communities that depend on them. The EU and Azerbaijan are working together to establish sustainable pasture management practices, improve the fertility of pastures and forests, and prevent soil erosion and landslides.

Results include:

  • pasture inventory of 3,000 hectares of land in target zones
  • experimental restoration treatments to enhance carbon pools, including the sowing of more than 20 hectares of degraded soil with seeds, completion of 12 demonstration plots with plantings and erosion prevention measures, and establishment of rotational grazing systems for 16 farms
  • more than 3,000 hectares of summer pastures restored

Monitoring air quality:

The EU has launched a Twinning programme with Azerbaijan, aimed at strengthening environmental monitoring systems to ensure reliable data for policy planning. Working with the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, the project aims to:

  • streamline collection, processing and reporting of data at the Ministry
  • develop technical systems for environmental monitoring – comparing technical standards for air quality monitoring, water and soil sampling with EU standards and providing recommendations for priority investments
  • train staff on data collection and analysis (workshops, hands-on training and study visits)
  •  implement modernised systems through real case studies, including public communication of air quality assessment and pollution level index