In reply to the positive opinion of 'Center for Environmental Impact Expert Assessment' SNCO of RA Nature Protection Ministry on the project submitted by 'Zangezour Copper and Molybdenum Combine' SNCO, 'Armenian Environmental Front' civic initiative has disseminated a statement on violations, which particularly says: '... According to this positive opinion issued by the Ministry, up to 22 million tons of ore will be permitted to be mined in Qajaran mine vs. currently permitted 12.5 million tons. The ZCMC was issued the right to mine annually 12.5 million tons of ore and the positive environmental impact expert opinion still in 2007, which hasn't undergone any changes in recent 10 years. In its turn, it means that the company developing the mine is not entitled to mine more ore than that of permitted by the competent state bodies. The Armenian Environmental Front (AEF) civic initiative has found out from the enquiries sent to state bodies, that in recent 7 years ZCMC has mined and processed by 29.7 million ton ores more that it was permitted, which resulted in the same amount of additional wastes dumped into Artsvanik reservoir thus increasing environmental pollution in different ways. It's a violation of RA Law 'On Environmental Impact Expert Assessment' in force by 9 August 2014. The requirement of Article 21 (2) of RA Law 'On Environmental Impact Expert Assesment and Expertise' hasn't been enforced either: ZCMC has also violated the requirement of Article 59 (3(1)) of RA Code on Subsoil, which entered into force on 1 January 2012.' Still in 2014 the AEF has dispatched an official enquiry to RA Nature Protection Ministry, where an alarm signal was beaten on the excessive mining in Qajaran mine among other issues. Nevertheless, the ministry, instead of enforcing the requirements of the law, replied that the ZCMC was developing a relevant package for the mining of 22 million tons of ore, which was to be submited for environmental impact assessment.
17:33 February 24, 2017