The village of Areguni a part of enlarged community of Geghamasar, Gegharkunik Region, is unique for its climatic conditions. According to the residents, there are 300 days of sunshine a year here, which is a great opportunity for renewable energy development, particularly solar energy. Already “Sky Energy” Company has changed the category of 12 hectares of arable land into energy operational category for the construction of solar photovoltaic stations.
Areguni administrative representative Sos Hovhannisyan told EcoLur that they have no problem providing space for the construction of new solar stations. “The village has great potential for energy resources. We have plots. We have a good mountain, which is an extraordinary solar power station. This mountain is a great resource. The only problem is that investors shall know about it. Energy development will also create jobs,” he said.
One resident said that solar energy is just becoming available to the villagers. Solar energy is still available for 2-3 families who use it to heat water. “People put solar power taking out loans. They calculate that if they have to pay 20-25 thousand drams a month for electricity, now they will take out a loan, the amount will be 5000, 15 thousand will be reduced at the expense of solar energy, thus paying off the loan,” he said.
Areguni doesn’t have gas supply so far. Residents sometimes joke: "What color does gas have?" They use wood, fire bricks, gas cylinders and electricity for heating purposes.
As an alternative to wood, the villagers are ready to develop production of brickets and solar power generation. But both need finance, while the villagers don’t have it. According to administrative representative Sos Hovhannisyan, even the villagers have difficulty paying their land tax. In Areguni, with only 60 permanent residents out of 120 homes, people hope that the renovation of the M14 highway can help the village develop.
“Foreign tourists come 3-4 times a year. It is not excluded that the tourist movement will increase as a result of the renovation of the road. This is a section of the Little Silk Road. In addition, the idea of a guest house has been revived again in the village," one resident said.
Regarding the implementation of programs in the village by Geghamasar larger community, the administrative representative and the villagers noted that the coordination of the work carried out for 18 villages of the larger community takes time. “18 villages need to be answered. But not all can be reached at once, there is an order. One day it will be our turn,” he said.
12:00 October 09, 2019