ArmInfo.If the existing weather conditions are preserved, the additional water intake from Lake Sevan will probably exceed last year's volumes. "As of March 22, about 39% of the required norm has been accumulated in the reservoirs of Armenia, instead of 47.2% in 2017 and 58% in 2016.
That is, today the water reservoir is 19% fuller than the required norm," the question of ArmInfo, stated the chairman of the State Committee of the Water Economy of Armenia Arsen Harutyunyan at a meeting with journalists on March 22 after the meeting of the government. According to Harutyunyan, it is too early to talk about the volume of additional water releases from Lake Sevan. "However, if the weather conditions are poor for precipitation, the State Committee for Water Resources will have to apply to the National Assembly for permission to additional water intake from Lake Sevan," he said.
At the same time, the Water Management Committee also thought over Plan B in case of possible force majeure circumstances. In particular, according to plan, it is planned to restore and drill additional deep wells. So, for the restoration of 14 deep wells in the Armavir region and drilling of 23 more wells, according to preliminary estimates, 1bln AMD will be directed. Another 200 million drams will be allocated for the purchase of 20 mobile pumping stations. The funds will be directed from the reserve fund of the government. Today, according to the State Committee, some land areas of the Armavir and Aragatsotn regions, which use water from the Akhuryan reservoir for irrigation purposes, are the only risky ones in terms of irrigation, the only alternative to which are deep wells. "All 400 deep wells in the Armavir region are separately studied and, if necessary, restored, in order to level out possible risks for the irrigation season," Arsutunyan said.
Note that today at a meeting of the Armenian government Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan gave a number of instructions related to the preparation for the irrigation season. "Taking into account the fact that the current resources of the reservoirs can cause certain risks from the point of providing irrigation water to the villagers, I instruct the Chairman of the State Committee for Water Resources to develop and submit to the Ministry of Finance financial calculations related to the acquisition of mobile pumping units within 7 days , deep-water pumps, restoration of unused deep wells, as well as design work for drilling new wells to meet demand irrigation water ", - said the prime minister. He instructed in 10 days to initiate the process of appropriate procurement and complete the work until April 16. At the same time, according to the prime minister, it is necessary to provide an environmental impact assessment as soon as possible. The prime minister also instructed within three months to sum up the existing investment programs in the water sector, identify priorities for 2019 and submit relevant proposals to the government apparatus. Karen Karapetyan, instructed to plan the preparatory works for the irrigation season in the autumn-winter period.
It should be reminded that the National Assembly of Armenia on July 17, 2017 approved the law on increasing the volume of water discharge from Lake Sevan from 170 million cubic meters. up to 270 million cubic meters. The reason for this decision was the fact that the filling of the Aparan and Azat reservoirs was 17 million cubic meters less than in the previous one, and the Hrazdan River is less than 40 million cubic meters full. In addition, the Akhuryanskoye reservoir was filled with 105 million cubic meters less.
Despite the fact that the Ministry of Nature Protection of Armenia opposed the proposal to increase the water intake from Sevan, and independent experts unanimously reiterated that the decrease in the water level in Sevan will lead to irreversible consequences in connection with the intensification of the water logging process, the law was adopted that, like expected, reflected at the level of Lake Sevan. The authors of the law assured that additional releases of water per 100 million cubic meters, according to calculations, could lead to a decrease in the lake level by 8 cm, in which case, even in comparison with the same day of the previous year, a high level of Lake Sevan water will be provided at 10 cm (18-8). According to official data, in 2017 water intake totaled 266.757 million cubic meters of water, instead of the envisaged 270 million cubic meters. Do not forget that, as stated on January 19 this year.
Chairman of the State Committee for Water Resources of the Republic of Armenia Arsen Harutyunyan, in 2017 in Armenia 8930 hectares increased irrigated areas, amounting to 97470 hectares, which is 9.2% more than in 2016. According to him, irrigated areas of one hectare with 5130 cubic meters are brought to 6001 cubic meters. m. In 2018, as noted in the State Committee, the task will be to bring the irrigated areas to 110 thousand hectares.