6

A long article about the Azerbaijani blockade of the (now former) Lachin corridor claims that:

Azerbaijan is an authoritarian country that has not had any environmental activist initiatives for the past decade.

Is the latter part "has not had any environmental activist initiatives for the past decade", verifiable?

3
  • 8
    Frame challenge, I think when they say "environmental activist" they mean "people paid by foreign NGOs to undermine their country". That's why they don't count government projects or locals cleaning their lakes as ones.
    – alamar
    Oct 22, 2023 at 21:17
  • The question in the title and the body have different answers: "has Azerbaijan [not had any activist intiatives]" - "yes it has", vs. "is the claim verifiable" - "no, it is not". Oct 24, 2023 at 8:25
  • 1
    Can you say what having environmental activist initiatives might mean? Oct 25, 2023 at 19:58

2 Answers 2

17

No: Azerbaijan has many environmental activists, activist groups, and governmental initiatives.


This 2020 article from Medyan TV, a local non-profit news organization discusses a bunch of them:

Eco-activism is gaining momentum in Azerbaijan. Until recently, there was only a handful of people who were ready to clear reservoirs of garbage and protest against deforestation, but now there are hundreds. These people know how to communicate with the public and attract more and more like-minded people to their cause. One such group is “Eco-Front”.

Several local non-governmental organizations in Azerbaijan have implemented projects on environmental problems before, and small civic initiatives have been carried out as well. However, prior to the establishment of the Eco-front movement, environmental problems had not turned into a serious topic for discussion in society. These young people believe that the formula for their success is that they lead by example, showing how one can and should take care of the environment.

[...]

"Our most successful campaign has been against mass deforestation and for the protection of deer. We came out against the seizure of winter pastures in Gakh and Sheki and against deforestation," the environmental activist [Javid Gara] says.

[..]

This summer Eco-front started clearing garbage from lakes. Together with local residents, members of the movement have been able to clean three lakes in the country.

At a governmental level, Azerbaijan has committed to lowering carbon emissions:

Azerbaijan committed in its first Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) to achieve a quantitative target of a 35% GHG emissions’ reduction by 2030 compared to 1990. At COP 26 Azerbaijan announced a target of 40% GHG emission reduction by 2050.
[EU 4 Climate]

and

Azerbaijan has signed and ratified the Paris Climate Agreement. In its Nationally Determined Contributions (2017), the country has outlined climate change mitigation actions in its energy, oil and gas, residential and commercial, transport, agricultural, and waste sectors.
[Climate Change Knowledge Portal]

2

Yeah, OC (Open Caucasus) Media, which is sponsored by the West basically, also reported on this Ecofront in 2021:

6 July 2021

Environmentalists have staged a protest in front of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources in Baku. They cited ongoing deforestation and the long term lease — up to 49 years — of forest lands to private holders as the reason for the demonstration.

The protest was held on 6 July, and was organised by Ecofront, an Azerbaijani environmental NGO.

The photo that goes with that article shows like 15 people standing in a line in that protest, so whether this was a truly significant movement at the time, YMMV.

2
  • 1
    FWTW, OC also has a piece on a confrontation between riot police and some locals, related to "environmental damage caused by a goldmine". But not activists seem to have showed up there. The babushkas battled riot police. oc-media.org/… Oct 22, 2023 at 23:36
  • 2
    Public protests in Azerbaijan are associated with certain risks, so 15 members protesting is not necessarily a sign of insignificance. Oct 23, 2023 at 12:30

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .