UNDP/GEF Integrated Natural Resource Management in the Baikal Basin Transboundary Ecosystem

Situated in south-east Siberia, Lake Baikal is the oldest and deepest fresh-water lake in the world.  Photo: UNOPS/ V.Urbazaev

The Integrated Natural Resource Management in the Baikal Basin Transboundary Ecosystem is a project financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), implemented by UNDP, in partnership with the Russian Federation and the Government of Mongolia, and executed by UNOPS.

Lake Baikal is the oldest (25 million years old) and deepest (1,637 metres) fresh-water lake in the world. With one-fifth of the world's unfrozen surface fresh water, Lake Baikal is also the most voluminous, at 23,600 km3. The diversity of flora and fauna found in Lake Baikal is higher than any other freshwater lake in the world, with an estimated 40% of the lake's species still unidentified.

The project's objective is to spearhead integrated natural resource management of Baikal Lake Basin and Hövsgöl Lake, to ensure ecosystem resilience and reduced water-quality threats in the context of sustainable economic development. The project has three primary components: elaborating a strategic policy and planning framework; strengthening institutional capacity for integrated water resource management; and demonstrating water quality and biodiversity mainstreaming practices, including groundwater monitoring and protection.

The Water and Energy Cluster supports the Project Management Unit in Ulan-Ude, Russia Federation through:

  • Continued project guidance, from project inception
  • Recruitment, contract management and training of key project personnel
  • Procurement of goods, services and works (for example for the construction of a cattle mortuary pilot site to cease periodic anthrax outbreaks that contaminate ground water)
  • Regular monitoring of financial expenditure and budget revisions
  • Management advice on the project implementation and interaction with project stakeholders