IC/019/22 - International Consultant for conducting a feasibility study on designing a Master Plan on Afforestation in Uzbekistan (re-advertisement)


Location : Home-based with possible 1 mission to Tashkent, UZBEKISTAN
Application Deadline :24-Jun-22 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
30-Jun-2022
Duration of Initial Contract :60 working days
Expected Duration of Assignment :during July – October 2022

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Background

Uzbekistan faces major challenges caused by climate change including desertification, water scarcity, more frequent draughts, and depletion of the Aral Sea. Climate risks are exacerbated in the country by both the average temperatures rising and mountain glaciers, a vital source of drinking water, melting at a faster pace than the global averages. While forests account for only 7.7 percent of the country’s territory according to the UN FAO, they play a major role in reversing desertification, protecting biodiversity and landscapes and are a vital storehouse of carbon.

To combat the negative impact posed by climate change, the Government of Uzbekistan has put forward an afforestation initiative, called Yashil Makon/Green Nation in November 2021. This nation-wide afforestation program was added to the Strategy for Developing the New Uzbekistan during 2022-2026 and envisages expansion of forest cover area in the country by planting 200 million trees annually. The Green Nation Programme foresees a comprehensive scheme of greening efforts with engagement of various public agencies and research community. In order to realize this ambition, the Government anticipates establishment of the Green Nation Fund that is set in the newly drafted National Development Strategy (2022-2026).

At the same time, it is essential to conduct a thorough feasibility study and subsequently prepare a comprehensive Greening Master Plan prior to any massive afforestation/revegetation. This is particularly necessary to identify important ecological zones, types of ecosystems, expected roles and services of the restored ecosystems to define planting targets, deciding which locations are suitable for planting trees, shrubs, or grass, setting up the monitoring system, determining the land ownership issues, planning the watering infrastructure, identify future-proof tree species etc. In addition, such a masterplan would feed into a forest and even urban management plan with clear targets. Ideally, it should also give an indication/estimate of required resources required for its implementation - financial and human resources investment and logistics.

Moreover, an efficient coordination system is needed to align the efforts of various stakeholders. With different institutions involved in different phases of the program implementation, such as planting, infrastructure development, maintenance and management, financing, monitoring, there is a critical need to ensure that all actions are well synchronized and coordinated. A strong leadership and coordination system needs to be in place to achieve the goals of the program.

Finally, a well established financing model needs to be in place for this program, it management to be funded in the long term as planned. The Government has established the Green Nation Fund that will be aimed at supporting the afforestation program. Yet, the ambitions of the afforestation program are high. This means that government investment alone cannot meet the needed funds, especially for the maintenance of the restored ecosystems. The issue is complex, and Investment and financing sources must be broadened to raise more non-governmental funds including international financing, private domestic financing into forestry to meet the needs for sustainable forest management and forestry development. Introducing carbon offset trading will help to further easing the burden from the government.

The current poition aims at conducting a feasibility study to design a comprehensive Master Plan for the Uzbekistan’s Green Nation Program and possibly other afforestation/revegetation activities through covering the following work:

  • Review the existing national policies and regulations on afforestation and urban greening activities.
  • Review the country’s zoning plans including ecological zones and ecosystem/forest types
  • Review the classification of suitable plant species compositions.
  • Review the challenges and opportunities in implementing the afforestation/revegetation and urban greening activities, including increase of pressure to limited water resources, and potential environmental benefits and risks.   
  • Identify key interests, parties and areas of afforestation /revegetation and urban greening activity.
  • Assess key land ownership/tenure issues (legal, regulatory, financial, etc.) related to afforestation and greening activities.
  • Assess the required resources: short, medium, long-term – starting with current situation: financial resource estimate for a 5-year massive afforestation and regeneration project; existing water infrastructure and possible future watering infrastructure needs, regeneration material production (nurseries)- current and future needs; available and possible future human (including education) and technical resources, and available and future needs in tree care services.
  • Propose a basic concept of a Master Plan with potential structure, governance mechanism, a monitoring system, resources and commitments.
  • Explore potential coordination mechanisms for implementation of a Master Plan.

The International Consultant will be responsible for the accomplishment of the following tasks and activities under the direct supervision of the Programme Manager, Environment and Climate Action Cluster Leader in UNDP Country office


Duties and Responsibilities

For detailed information, please refer to Annex 1 – Terms of Reference for International Consultant for conducting a feasibility study on designing a Master Plan on Afforestation in Uzbekistan

 

You can review detailed Procurement Notice, Terms of Reference and download templates from the UNDP Procurement Notices Site following the link: http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_notice.cfm?notice_id=92325 


Competencies

  • Strong analytical and advisory capacity, including the ability to analyze and advise innovative solutions
  • Strong data collection, communication, research, and writing skills
  • Client-orientation and excellent interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills
  • Ability to use information and communication technology as a tool and resource


Required Skills and Experience

Education:    University degree (Masters or above) in in the field of Economics, Development Economics, Forestry or forest management, Public Policies, Environment, Social Policies, Development Studies, or other relevant fields

 

Experience:

  • At least 5 years of experience in sustainable forest management, monitoring and/ planning, the management of afforestation programs/projects and wide nation campaigns in high-quality policy advisory roles, including advisory roles on environmental issues, biodiversity conservation, economy, sustainable development.
  • Good understanding of policymaking, governance, and related mechanisms and tools.
  • Some knowledge of work related to combatting desertification, dust and sandstorms by afforestation and related activities such as soil and sand dune fixation, water harvesting, pasture development, etc.
  • Some practical experience in biodiversity conservation projects.
  • Excellent understanding of green standards and principles is required.
  • Good understanding of gender aspects and gender mainstreaming into the development and business processes is required.
  • Proven experience in preparation of assessments and feasibility studies is required.
  • Previous experience with a development partner or government will be an asset.

Application Process:

Interested candidates need to apply online at www.jobs.undp.org and upload requested documents in Part 4 of the Procurement Notice no later than June-24, 2022 (New York time). Please combine all your documents into one (1) single PDF document as the system only allows you to upload a maximum of one document. Your online application submission will be acknowledged to your email address provided in the application. If you do not receive an email acknowledgment within 24 hours of submission, your application may not have been received. In such cases, please resubmit the application, if necessary. Link to the application at the UNDP Job Site - https://jobs.undp.org/cj_view_job.cfm?cur_job_id=107266 (cut and paste into the browser address bar if the link does not work).

You can review detailed Procurement Notice, Terms of Reference, and download templates from the UNDP Procurement Notices Site following the link: http://procurement-notices.undp.org/view_notice.cfm?notice_id=92325  (cut and paste into the browser address bar if the link does not work).

Applications submitted via email, incomplete applications, or received after the closing date (June-24, 2022) may not be given consideration.

For more detailed information about UNDP Uzbekistan please visit our website at https://www.undp.org/uzbekistan. UNDP is an equal opportunity employer. Qualified female candidates, people with disabilities, and minorities are highly encouraged to apply. UNDP Balance in Manage Policy promotes the achievement of gender balance among its staff at all levels. Requests for clarification must be sent in writing to pu.uz@undp.org, ensuring that the reference number above is included in the subject line. UNDP shall endeavor to provide such responses to clarifications in an expeditious manner, but any delay in such response shall not cause an obligation on the part of UNDP to extend the submission date of the Proposals unless UNDP deems that such an extension is justified and necessary.



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