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History of WWF Mongolia in
context of Mongolia’s
Conservation evolution
1992 – until present
B.Chimed-Ochir, Country Representative
7th February 2011, Ulaanbaatar
• Institutional development
• Evolution of WWF’s conservation priorities
in context of country’s situation
• Evolution of conservation community in
• Major threats and future trend
• WWF’s niche and challenges
• WWF’s vision and must - win objectives
Institutional history
• 1992 – 1997: Project office with 3 staff
• 1997 – 2002: Country office with 9 staff (4
in field office Khovd) and registered as
branch of international NGO in 1997
• Since 2002: Programme office with 29
Evolution of WWF’s priorities
(1992 – 1997)
The project “National parks of Mongolia”,
financed WWF Germany (1992 -1997)
– Establishment of new large scale PA
– Support Government for identifying financial
sources for PA development
– Awareness and advocacy on PA’s
First international NGO in Mongolia
Country’s situation 1992 - 1997
• Political and economical transition just
started and lack of finance for everything
• Reform of environmental legislative acts
• Increased overall poverty level – migration
from settlement to country site
• Freedom for travel - transboundary illegal
trade with wildlife products increased
• Golden time for establishing large PA’s
Some success stories …
• Country’s PA network – WWF as major
and single player
• Long-term contribution from Germany to
nature conservation
Evolution of WWF’s priorities
(1998 – 2002)
• First 5 years Conservation Programme with
focus on:
– Species conservation; Saiga and Snow leopard
– PA management e.g. Khar Us Nuur NP
– Establishment new PA’s
• Financial sources: WWF-DE, WWF-NL,
WWF-AT, Messerli, Mava
• Ecoregional approach – Altai-Sayan
Country’s situation
1998 - 2002
• Livestock number reached historical height
– 32 Millions
• Two following drought in summer and
harsh winter – lost 9 million livestock
• Increased mining activities, especially gold
Some success stories …
• Shifting from establishment to
management of PA
• Saiga population increased during the
project implementation (1998 – 2001)
• First time involvement of locale people
into Snow leopard conservation
Evolution of WWF’s priorities
(2003 – 2007)
• 2nd 5 years conservation programme
• Aligned with Global Programme: TDB and
– Species, Freshwater, Forest, Toxic and Climate
– Altai-Sayan (80%) and Daurian (20%) ecoregions
• Major financial sources: WWF-SE and SIDA,
WWF-DE, Hermsen and Otto foundation
Country’s situation
(2003 – 2007)
Individual Illegal mining so called “Ninjas”
New dam projects
Overgrazing and habitat competition
Climate change
Weak management policies and
institutional framework - bad governance
Some success stories …
• Successful toxic campaign against
massive use of rodenticide to control
Brand’s vole
• Legislation adopting IRBM approaches
• EIA for Dorgon HPP
• Piloting community forestry in Khan
Khokhie mountain range
• Mobile anti-poaching units in Western
Evolution of WWF’s priorities
(2006 – 2010)
• 3rd Conservation programme – update of 2nd CP in 2005
• 2 Ecoregions: Altai-Sayan and Daurian (later refocused
on AHEC) with 3 pillars:
– Priority/Flagship Species: Argali, Snow leopard, Saiga, Saker
Falcon, Mongolian Antelope, Taimen
– Freshwater conservation
– With cross-cutting issues: ESD, habitat protection and
management, policy advocacy, law enforcement
• Main approaches: CBNRM and IRBM
• Financial sources: WWF-SE, NL, US, DE, MAVA and
Country’s situation
(2006 – 2010)
• Increased commodity price on world market e.g.
copper, gold, coal etc
• Tremendous increase of state budget
– Increased public concern on mining impacts and
• Overgrazing and desertification (almost 70% of
• Climate change, specially in frequency of
extreme events, biomass and freshwater
Evolution of conservation
1996 law on NGO
More than 500 NGO but still weak …
2 international NGO; TNC and WCS (+TAF)
Major players are GTZ, UNDP, SDC, (NL)
ADB and WB integrated in sector
• Public movements against mining activities
Major threats and future trend
• Mining development and large investment:
– Threats: Lot of money and corruption, freshwater
ecosystem degradation, habitat fragmentation
– Opportunity: Social and environmental responsibility
due to public reputation and increased funding
• Livestock sector and NR management:
– Threats: desertification, degradation and habitat loss
– Opportunity: dependencies of livelihood
• Climate change impacts:
– Forest, freshwater, pasture and vulnerability of
Possible priority actions…
• For mining sector:
– Biodiversity offset programme
– Transparency and public involvement
• For livestock sector:
– Integrated policy and market based
approaches for sustainable rangeland
– Increased local community stewardship for
their natural environment e.g. CBNRM
WWF’s niche and challenges
• WWF’s niche:
– Well known and high reputation
– Local presences and competent staff
• Challenges:
– Flexibility and multi disciplinary team
– Increased competition for funding
– Building strategic partnership with
development institutions and corporate sector
WWF’s vision and must – win
To ensure local community stewardship
for their natural environment