Climate, Energy and Environmental Problems of Touristic Dilijan

Climate, Energy and Environmental Problems of Touristic Dilijan

Dilijan, a popular tourist community rich in forests and mineral water sources, is vulnerable to climate change. In 2022, Dilijan was the second municipality in Armenia with a deviation from the norm of the sum of summer days by 45 days. In the same year, the amount of monthly precipitation in Dilijan was less than half of the norm - 43%. A very severe drought was recorded in the community In 2021 and 2022: the water output of the Aghstev River flowing through Dilijan decreased to 72.0% of the norm in 2021, and 73.7% in 2022. Active landslides in the territory of Dilijan are a threat to the safety of the population of the community.

EcoLur team held a meeting with active residents of Dilijan community and representatives of the municipality to discuss the project of the information module developed by EcoLur "Problems and proposed measures of implementation of green energy and climate resilience policy in Dilijan community, Tavush Region, Armenia". The purpose of the document is to contribute to the full involvement of the community and the protection of its interests in the decision-making process regarding state policies in the climate and energy sectors, to support the social, ecological and economic development of the community to achieve climate justice and reduce energy poverty. "EcoLur" Informational NGO’s module entitled was developed with the funding of "EU4Climate" regional program with the support of the UNDP/GEF "Impacted communities and civil society organizations as participants in the introduction of socio-ecological culture in the energy and climate change policies of Armenia" Small Grants Programme.

The issues of the community, the necessary measures for the adaptation and mitigation of climate change, the possibilities and plans for the implementation of energy efficiency and energy saving measures in the community, as well as the trends in the development of renewable energy were discussed during this meeting.

"Our community has become more vulnerable in terms of climate change, as climate change also affects the community's water supply. Forest fires start in summer," said Albert Haroyan, President of "Ecopolicy" NGO. He mentioned that it is necessary to implement programs aimed at energy efficiency and energy saving in order to improve social conditions.

"In our climate, solar energy is not effective. It would be right for us to use other branches of renewable energy, for example, wind," said Arman Bazinyan, Deputy Head of Dilijan Community.

Manush Hovnanyan, President of local "Support to Women and Children" NGO, noted that educational programs are being implemented in the Dilijan community to raise children's awareness of the importance of energy and climate projects.

4 SHPPs are operated in the community, out of which two are built in the territory of "Dilijan" National Park. In the areas where the derivation pipelines of SHPPs pass, the rivers remain with little water or no water at all. The sanitary condition of the river section under the operation of SHPPs is deteriorating. The local microclimate is changing, the river fish life is disappearing. The community does not receive social support from SHPPs.

Back in 2014, Dilijan joined the European Union's "Covenant of Mayors" global initiative, but its participation is currently suspended. EcoLur members said that Dilijan could renew its participation in the "Covenant of Mayors" and receive expert support to strengthen capacity and develop strategies to implement projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

It should be noted that the volume of firewood required is more than the volume of legally offered firewood and sawdust.

Deforestation in Dilijan leads to reduction of greenhouse gas accumulation capacity and active manifestations of climate change.

During the meeting, special attention was paid to the social component, which should become part of climate change adaptation and "green" energy. For this purpose, a package of recommendations is being developed in cooperation between EcoLur and the community, which will be submitted to the competent state bodies in charge.

October 10, 2023 at 13:57