“When Amulsar program was launching, the company declared there was no red-listed plant or animal. And then we responded it was impossible not to have any red-listed species in 10,000 ha in Armenia,” said WWF Armenia Director Karen Manvelyan at the press conference held at EcoLur Press Club.
Amulsar project is implemented by Lydian International Company as represented by its subsidiary – Lydian Armenia Company. It’s going to develop in opencast manner Amulsar gold mine located in Vayots Dzor and Syunik borderline and to heap leach the gold.
“We organized a field trip to Amulsar area and our specialists detected one red-listed plant, extremely endangered, Potentilla porphyrantha, and around 25 animal species. I know that the company transferred this plant to Sevan Botanical garden and tries to reproduce it, so as when mining is over, the plant will be returned to its habitat. I can’t say whether or not it’s feasible, but the plant and animals should be on their spots. What about mammals and vertebrates, it’s clear that small animals and reptiles will fall under the heavy machinery, and most probably, they will disappear. Mammals should pass around this area, but I don’t know how,” Karen Manvelyan said.
“We refused from Geoteam’s proposal (currently renamed “Lydian Armenia”) to finance the project on establishing “Jermuk” National Park, as on one hand you are destroying nature and on the other hand you are trying to establish a national park, it doesn’t coincide with each other,” Karen Manvelyan said.
In 2014 the Armenian Government adopted “State Program on Strategy, Preservation and Use of Specially Protected Areas in the Republic of Armenia”, according to which in 2017-2020 “Jermuk” National Park shall be established and according to this document WWF Armenia is one of the structures, which shall agree to establish “Jermuk” National Park.
WWF Armenia specialists detected the following red-listed species in the area of Armenia:
Caucasian rat snake
Lesser spotted eagle
Photos are taken from www.plant-world-seeds.com, hy.wikipedia.org, www.mnp.am, www.aspbirds.org, www.yerevanzoo.am, www.acopiancenter.am web sites.
17:33 September 01, 2016