Water and soil pollution are serious issues in Tajikistan. Many surface water bodies are polluted by human activity, particularly from industrial wastewater. Hazardous waste management issues are also prominent in Tajikistan. Currently, there is no reliable information on the volumes and types of waste, including toxic waste (such as pesticides). Wastewater treatment in the country does not follow the international rules of transfer, and storage of toxic goods and chemicals intended for use in agriculture and industrial facilities is often inadequate to prevent the spread and contamination of toxic materials.
Since 2012, Pure Earth has been working in Tajikistan to identify and assess toxic sites as part of our TSIP initiative. Over 370 toxic sites have been assessed. Several of these sites identified pose a serious threat to human health. Pure Earth has implemented remediation projects, where crumbling or abandoned pesticide warehouses were cleaned up.
As a result of our project in Tajikistan to mitigate exposure to radionuclides, 5 radioactive hotspots in residential areas were removed. The results of the sociological surveys conducted in 2014 were used to design and implement an education and awareness program. 400 people who live close to the tailings were educated about radiation safety and provided printed materials. This has significantly decreased the most immediate risks of radioactive contamination to people. The awareness activities inspired local residents to demand actions from the regional government to address the issue of contamination from tailings. The governor responded by ordering the covering up of tailings with a layer of clean soil. By the end of 2015 more than 30% of the tailings were covered.
Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health-Tajikistan Summary
Pollution is responsible for 19.6% of deaths in Tajikistan. Learn more about how pollution affects health and the economy in Tajikistan by reading the Tajikistan Summary Report, based on the Lancet Commission on Pollution and Health.
Country and Project Reports
Tajikistan Project Pages
- Projects in Progress: Uniting Against Abandoned Pesticides
- Completed Projects: Saidov, Jami – Pesticide Cleanup and Mitigating Exposure to Radionuclides
- TSIP Trainings: TSIP Training Dushanbe (2014) and TSIP Training Dushanbe (2012)
- Preliminary Site Assessment: Former Warehouses of Pesticides in the Tajikistan Republic
Read more about our work in Tajikistan in The Pollution Blog:
- Two pesticide cleanups and a wedding in Tajikistan, near the Afghan border (June 2019)
- In Tajikistan, Coalition of Local Groups Unite Against Abandoned Pesticide Problem (Sept 2018)
- Pollution Warrior Profile: Umed in Tajikistan Saves Families from Toxic Landowner (May 2017)
- At the Roof of the World in Tajikistan (Feb 2014)