At the Cabinet sitting on October 3, the Armenian Government did not approve the draft law on prohibiting additional water intake from the lake in case of the negative balance of Lake Sevan. On the initiative of Varazdat Karapetyan, Chairman of the Standing Committee on Territorial Administration, Local Self-Government, Agriculture and Nature Protection of the National Assembly, a draft law was developed, which proposes not to intake more than 170 million m3 provided by law in case of the negative balance of the lake. The legislative proposal was justified as follows:
“In 2008, 2012, 2014, 2017, 2018 more than 170 million m3 of water intake was carried out from Lake Sevan. As a result of the decrease in the level of Lake Sevan, due to the warming of the water and the reproduction of algae, the risk of marshy marsh swamping has increased and 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 increase in lake volume and the increase in water level. The purpose of the proposal is to limit any more abstractions in the event of negative lake water balance due to climatic conditions."
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.
15:41 October 03, 2019