New strike on Lake Sevan. The State Committee of Water Industry of Territorial Administration Ministry developed a bill “On approving the state complex program on the recovery, preservation, reproduction and natural development and usage of Lake Sevan ecosystem” and at the same time “Temporary program of changes in annual maximum amount of water outlets from Lake Sevan.” Under this temporary program, 240 million cubic meters of water will be let out of Lake Sevan each year, i.e. by 77.2 million more than the limit laid down in the current law – 170 million.
The reason is the shallowness of Sev Jur River. The water of this river turns out to feed from the underground sources of Ararat Valley, which have reduced because of merciless exploitation of the underground waters in Ararat Valley. The Sev Jur River feeds the pumping stations of Arevshat 1, fills the lakes of Akna and Metsamor, which are used to irrigate 8180 ha of land areas in 29 communities. Reminder: 562 illegal wells have been inventories in Ararat and Armavir Regions, which are subject to liquidation. The Nature Protection Ministry has allotted 107.5 million AMD for the liquidation of illegally used 43 wells in Ararat and Armavir regions. Under the official data or 2011, 234 fish farms used the water of 450 wells in Ararat Valley. Under the estimates of the specialists, only fish farms used 800 million cubic meters of water per year.
The other reason is the increase in water outlets, loss of water flowing into Sevan-Hrazdan energy-derivative system: instead of 7%, the loss makes up 18%, which results in the loss of 42.7 million cubic meters thus creating water deficit in the irrigation system.
According to the official information, already 1 billion AMD (2.5 million USD) has been spent on the solution to this problem and another 700 million AMD should be spent.
We demand to hold public hearings of “On approving the state complex program on the recovery, preservation, reproduction and natural development and usage of Lake Sevan ecosystem” and “Temporary program of changes in annual maximum amount of water outlets from Lake Sevan” projects before approving them and to take the public opinions, proposals and remarks into consideration.
11:49 December 03, 2013