Vernashen Community Head: Gladzor Mine Will Annul Vernashen Community Development Programs

Vernashen Community Head: Gladzor Mine Will Annul Vernashen Community Development Programs


“All our village is a miracle with its water, fruit and everything. Our pastures, apple orchards, grape yards...just see the damage to be caused with mining – cattle breeding, wine making become a null, our apricot, apple and Greek hazelnut...our drinking and irrigation waters... everything will come out of order,” Vernashen Community Head Miqayel Baghdasaryan is listing the damage to be caused to Vernashen community in case of Gladzor mining.

Gladzor polymetallic mine is located in Vayots Dzor Region, in the administrative area of Gladzor and Vernashen communities. “Vayq Metal” LLC intends to mine it, but RA Nature Protection Ministry has issued a negative opinion to the project of the company. 

“Vayq Metal” LLC decided to appeal the rejection in court and lodged a suit against RA Nature Protection Ministry and RA Ministry for Energy Infrastructures and Natural Resources.
Vernashen community is presenting its development projects, which are in conflict with the mining project, “First, it’s the project of “Consumer Cooperative of Vernashen Community Pasture Users”: we have co-funded 1.5 million AMD and provided our labour force. The World Bank has provided us another 35 million AMD for the project of pasture water supply. The main objective of Pasture Users’ Union is the management, preservation and good governance of pastures, development of cattle breeding and water supply to pastures. We have now received funds and are currently using them.

The second is the continuation of the first project, which we are implementing with “Agency for Strategic Development” NGO. We have constructed a water pipeline in this area and installed drinking bowls. The project costs around 15 million AMD and is funded by the Swiss Development and Cooperation Agency. The community has carried out land and construction works.

The third project is goat breeding project, which has been approved personally by PM Karen Karapetyan. The project requires 40 million AMD investments from the government and 20 million AMD investments from the cooperative. Our current market has non-ending demand of goat milk and cheese, goat milk price makes up 250 AMD, and its profitability is currently very high,” Vernashen Community Head presented the projects and outlined that Gladzor mine will directly annul Vernashen community development projects.

According to Gegham Margaryan, Member of Aldermen’s Council of Vernashen Community, Vernashen community has a pasture of 2200 ha in the mine area, “In those mountains, where they want to do mining, they have a slope of 30 degrees and over. At the angle of 30 degrees early spring melting water and rainwater get collected and flow into the Malishka River, on the one hand and, on the other hand, they flow to Gladzor, Vernashen, then to Yeghegnadzor, join the Arpa River, then to Karmrashen and Herher Reservoir, where 6 communities get their water supply from. On the other hand, the snow melting and rain water flow into the Yeghegis River. In early spring and late Autumn the speed of wind is 30-40 m/s, in case of any open mining, wind will collect all the dust and blow into water and pollute our ideal nature,’ Gegham Margaryan said.

Watch for more details in the video.

18:18 May 29, 2017

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