The meeting of the multi-stakeholder boards of "Supporting New Reforms in SHPP Sector through CSO-Government Dialogue" project was held at EcoLur Press Club on 14 December with the participation of Hovhannes Ghazaryan - UNDP-GEF Small Grant Programme National Coordinator, Daniel Stepanyan - Renewable Energy Development Department Head at Ministry for Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources, Hakob Hakobyan – Head of Unit For Elimination of Consequences of Natural Disasters and Defense of Population of Rescue Service of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Armenia, National Assembly Expert Hermine Poghosyan, “Khazer” Environmental and Cultural NGO Advisor Aram Gabrielyan, Karine Danielyan – President of 'Association for Sustainable Human Development' NGO, Yerevan Aarhus Center Coordinator Silva Ayvazyan, Evelina Ghukasyan – Director of Hydroecology and Ichtyology Institute of NAS RA, Mesrop Gharibyan – Leading Specialist of Public Service Regulatory Committee and EcoLur's team.
EcoLur's expert Victoria Burnazyan presented the problems detected during the second stage of the SHPP monitoring project: this time the expert group has visited 36 SHPPs, thus, the number of studied SHPPs has amounted to 123 SHPPs.
There are SHPPs which haven't undergone environmental expertise because their capacity is up to 1 MW, nevertheless, their structures and dams blocking the riverbeds have a profound effect on the river ecosystem. There are SHPPs which are constructed in the water-course formation zone, which contradicts the legislation.
The problems with environmental flow, the automated management system of water level, absence of water-measuring devices, fish passways, loss of fish species, incorrect hydro-economic estimates, efficient devices, the poor environmental and sanitary state remain unsolved.
Victoria Burnazyan mentioned that three draft governmental resolutions and 2 bills have been developed based on the project outcomes and put into circulation on www.e-draft.am. Proposals have been sent to RA Nature Protection Ministry on the draft resolution of the Armenian government on the calculation of environmental flow and RA Law “On Environmental Impact Expert Assessment and Expertise”.
SHPP inspection sheet has been developed for Nature Protection and Soil Inspection Body of RA Nature Protection Ministry. SHPP ecopassport proposal has been developed for the resolution of the Armenian Government.
Evelina Ghukasyan, Director of Hydroecology and Ichthyology Institute of NAS RA outlined the problem the developers use out-of-date data on river flows when determining environmental flow, while estimates on water flow in many rivers are missing.
Daniel Stepanyan, Renewable Energy Development Department Head at Ministry for Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources, said he agrees with most of the observations. He mentioned that reforms should be realistic and implemented step by step, shall contain a component attractive for the investors and comply with the concept paper on the development of renewable energy.
According to “Khazer” Environmental and Cultural NGO Advisor Aram Gabrielyan, SHPPs shall refuse from dams: the river can be divided into water collection and environmental flow in a natural manner.
The material was developed in the frames of “Supporting new reforms in SHPP sector through CSO-government dialogue” supported by UNDP/GEF Small Grants Programme".
13:10 December 22, 2017