The water problem continues remaining the most important problem in Nerqin Getashen, Verin Getashen, Madina and Geghhovit communities in Gegharkounk Region, Armenia. In this regard, the residents of these communities regularly carry out protest demonstrations: the last protest demonstration was held in July in Nerqin Getashen community.
“I grow potatoes and have a land area of 1500 meters: when we had full water, we used to have good harvest – we used to sell potatoes in the amount of 300,000-400,000 AMD, but now the figures are 50,000-60,000, there no water…The HPP is operating, there is no water now…We can’t cultivate any land area, as there is no water. As soon as soon as the HPP starts operating, the irrigation water in Verin Getashen and Nerqin Getashen stops flowing. 2 or 3 days ago all the turbines were operating and there was no irrigation water in the village: 80-90% of all the land areas in our village have been left without cultivation. We don’t have any income at all...” the residents of Nerqin Getashen complained at the meeting with EcoLur. The residents relate all their water problems with the operation of “Argitchi” SHPP constructed on the Argitchi River.
Information by EcoLur
“Argitchi” SHPP is located in Gegharkounik Region. The water intake is carried out in the administrative area of Madina community, while water outlet is carried out in the administrative area of Verin Getashen community. The SHPP water usage permit says that the SHPP water intake is carried out in the administrative area of Geghhovit community. The SHPP has been operating since the autumn of 2013. According to the project, the length of the pipeline is 9527 m, its diameter is 1420 mm. There are five hydroaggregates of local “Khorda” production installed in the SHPP building, but the project envisaged 4 aggregates. The SHPP operation completely stops in irrigation season (April-September), as the water is used for the irrigation of Verin Getashen, Madina, Nerqin Getashen and Geghhovit communities
In his interview with EcoLur, “Martuni Women’s Community Council” NGO member Yeghiazar Davtyan expressed an opinion that all four communities can take irrigation water from the Argitchi River, which would be enough to carry out irrigation and not to use pumping stations. “The HPP operates from time to time and the water doesn’t reach all – one week it is provided to one neighborhood, then to another one next week,” he mentioned.
Information by EcoLur
Hydrological data are not reliable, which results in the lack of irrigation for affected communities. Technical solutions shall be found to clearly ensure environmental flow. After changing previous plastic pipelines in the SHPP, around 300-meter-long trenches are not covered, soil reclaiming hasn’t been carried out, which requires quick solutions: there are project deviations. The impacted communities have sought to reach an arrangement with the administration of the SHPP not to operate the SHPP in the irrigation season. “We had reached an arrangement, but it hasn’t been adhered to. They promised to stop the operation of HPP in the irrigation season, but don’t do it – the HPP operates in the irrigation season…” the residents said.
Under the residents, water supply is more or less sufficient after the protest demonstrations. They have irrigation water after the protest demonstration held in July.
18:26 July 23, 2019