• Dr J. Dalai, Director of the National Water Centre, an NGO, and General Director of the Prestige Group, tells N. Ariuntuya of MMJ that water scarcity fears are exaggerated and a well-designed and properly implemented national water consumption policy is essential for healthy economic development.
  • MP and Minister of Industry D.Erdenebat has used his twitter account to explain why he is against development of mining in the Noyon Mountain area. His tweet reads:
  • Lake Baikal is facing another environmental threat, this time from across the border with plans in Mongolia for a series of new hydroelectric power plants. Campaigners including Greenpeace have made a plea to the World Bank to block funding for the major projects, which will see the plants built on tributary rivers leading to Baikal. Among the proposals is one to dam a river and divert water to the Gobi desert.
  • One of the highlights of the “Oil and Oil Shale Mongolia” conference in Ulaanbaatar in September was a speech by B.Enkhbaatar, head of the project to support investment in mining infrastructure development, at a session devoted to infrastructure and the work force. We give below a summary of parts of his speech titled “Water basin management and strengthening the management of deep water basins”, and also his answers to some questions from the audience.
  • The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has recently released a report examining the water–energy nexus in Mongolia and the stress factors of urbanisation and mining.
  • Oyu Tolgoi is shaping a new approach to rehabilitation, firmly focused on maintaining the ancient natural environment. The Mongolian Gobi has a dry and extreme climate and native plants such as the saxaul tree have adapted to the harsh conditions over generations.
  • A prospecting company denied a mining licence under the ‘long-titled’ law is preparing to claim nearly $500 million from the State in court. It obtained the prospecting licence before the law was passed in 2009 and thereafter spent more than $10 million on the prospecting work.
  • Bruce McKenney, Strategy Director for the Nature Conservancy’s Development by Design program, tells how Mongolia can develop the green economy and minimize the mining sector’s impact on the environment.
  • Tsetseghkorol, a herder, stares out nostalgically at the Orkhon River, the longest in Mongolia. “In 1992, the river used to be wide, deep and clean,” she says. “Now it is very polluted and small.” Sitting with her neighbour Dashdavaa in a ger, Tsetseghkorol says she has lived alongside the 1,124-km-long Orkhon for 40 years, raising five children and a herd of livestock with little more than the natural bounty of the river basin.
  • On June 5th, Mongolia played host to the United Nations’ World Environment Day.  President Elbegdorj spoke at the event and said that Mongolia hopes to become a leader in renewable energy.
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