On October 14, RA NA Standing Committee on Territorial Administration, Local Self-Government, Agriculture and Environment gave a positive opinion to the bill prohibiting additional water intake Lake Sevan, despite the Government's negative stance. The bill was drafted by Chair of Committee Varazdat Karapetyan.
According to RA NA website, it was noted at the committee meeting that in 2008, 2012, 2014, 2017, 2018 more than 170 million m3 was abstracted from Lake Sevan. Lowering the lake level has increased the risk of waterlogging. The change of the natural regime will result in disturbance of the ecological balance of the lake and its basin. Experts have estimated that the only precondition for Lake Sevan ecosystem stabilization is the rising water level. The draft law approved by the committee should be included in the agenda of the forthcoming sessions of the National Assembly.
It should be reminded that on October 3 of this year the Armenian government did not approve this bill. The Government of Armenia rejected the draft law arguing that water intake from Lake Sevan has no alternative to mitigate the water deficit, regardless of the balance of the lake. In addition, under the proposed limitation, it will be necessary to carry out water supply through the operation of deep wells, which will lead to increased electricity costs. This, in turn, will lead to additional expenditures from the state budget of Armenia, as irrigation water supply is currently subsidized from the state budget. The Government considered the need for adoption of the draft to be insufficiently substantiated and not compliant with the requirements of Article 14 of RA Law on Normative Legal Acts.
16:02 October 15, 2019