Zarrina Abdulalieva | Tajikistan | MSc in Environment and Development | London School of Economics and Political Science
Zarrina is a mid-career professional in Dushanbe, Tajikistan, who has been a Project Officer with the Asian Development Bank (ADB) in the areas of energy, regional cooperation, natural resources and climate change, managing projects in excess of USD$60 million. She is also a member of boards and committees involved with climate change.
Tajikistan is one of the most climate vulnerable countries in Central Asia, frequently experiencing extreme climate events that routinely take lives and destroy or degrade land, crops, and infrastructure. This threatens Tajikistan’s economic, social, and human development.
Providing clean, sustainable energy is not only crucial to eradicate poverty but also to fight environmental problems such as global warming. Less than 10% of Tajikistan’s vast hydroelectric power has been developed. Hydropower production exceeds demand in summer and is significantly reduced in winter when glacial melt is least and demand is most. Women and children suffer most since they spend a lot of time collecting dried cattle dung and unsustainable wood supplies from long distances for heating and cooking, instead of studying or engaging in income generating activities. It significantly undermines their access to equal rights and opportunities.
Zarrina’s plan is to learn new economic concepts and quantitative tools applicable to the analysis, appraisal and valuation of a wide range of environmental problems and policies, and other hot issues that can dramatically influence forming appropriate strategy for Tajikistan’s future energy development. This will contribute towards the development of a healthy and efficient national economy.
Upon completion of her program in London, Zarrina returned to Tajikistan in early 2017, where she is with the World Bank, focused on the design and implementation of a comprehensive sustainable development strategy that addresses environmental challenges in an efficient and transparent manner. “Providing clean, sustainable energy is not only crucial to eradicate poverty but also to fight environmental problems such as global warming,” she states emphatically.
She also plans to help build the capacity of government employees who lack certain technical skills. And, she plans to continue working promoting a high-level policy dialogue aimed at supporting the government development agenda focusing on environmental sustainability. She sees herself as a senior policy decision-maker. She believes it is crucial to have many more female leaders in what is a conservative traditional society to ensure inclusive economic development, and equal rights and opportunities for women and girls.