Thursday, August 8 2019 18:02
Alina Hovhannisyan

Expert: There is no catastrophic situation on Lake Sevan at this  moment 

Expert: There is no catastrophic situation on Lake Sevan at this  moment 

ArmInfo. There is no catastrophic situation on Lake Sevan at this moment. This opinion was expressed on August 8 at a press conference by former Minister of  Environment of the Republic of Armenia, Advisor to the Director of  the Institute of Geology of the National Academy of Sciences of  Armenia Sargis Shahazizyan.

But he noticed that today there are bogging processes on the lake,  which must be watched so as not to face serious consequences in the  future. In this regard, S. Shahazizyan noted that it is necessary to  slowly increase the water level in Sevan, otherwise the balance may  be disturbed, which will lead to decay of coastal trees, organic  matter, which subsequently entails waterlogging in the lake, which  already takes place be.

However, according to S. Shahazizyan, the main problem of Sevan is 28  rivers, which flow into the lake and fill it with various kinds of  garbage. In this regard, he emphasized that there is a need to create  treatment plants on at least 4-5 large rivers flowing into Sevan.  "Otherwise, we will not be able to talk about replenishing the fauna  in the lake," he emphasized.

S. Shahazizyan defined today's attitude towards Sevan as criminal,  barbaric. "Instead of updating irrigation systems, since 60-70% of  water leaving Sevan disappears, we constantly release from the lake,  which cannot but lead to serious consequences," the expert said.

At the same time, according to the former minister, in Armenia today,  special attention needs to be paid to the conservation of water  resources, namely their effective use. "There is no water shortage in  Armenia, there is a problem of inefficient use of water resources,"  he emphasized.

To recall, on July 9, Minister of the Environment Erik Grigoryan  stated from the rostrum of the National Assembly of the Republic of  Armenia that the state will allocate funds for cleaning Lake Sevan.

Earlier, the Ministry of Nature Protection of Armenia provided   information on the ecological status of Lake Sevan and the steps   taken in connection with the threat of waterlogging of the lake. The   message of the Ministry, in particular, states: ''Recently, the   growth of blue-green algae of the genus Anabaena has been observed in   Lake Sevan. These algae in the lake were first seen in the 1940s and   the first flowering was recorded in 1964 and repeated in different  volumes in other years, including in 2018''.

According to experts, several factors contributed to the growth of   blue-green algae - wastewater from dozens of settlements and coastal   objects flowing into a lake, agriculture, fish farming and animal   husbandry, in particular, phosphorus and nitrogen residues   penetrating into the waters of Sevan, flooded coastal forest belt ,   high temperature and climatic changes, low precipitation, as well as   frequent and strong winds that increase evaporation of water.   According to the Ministry, in May of this year only 36 million cubic   meters of precipitation were recorded, which is close to the   historically minimum (33 million). In order to stabilize the   ecological state of the lake, the Ministry of the Environment has  already carried out and continues to take a number of actions: 1.   Daily work is underway to define the demand for irrigation water and   reduce water withdrawal from Sevan; water withdrawal volumes are   monitored through field research; 2. Constant monitoring is carried   out in order to obtain information on the current state of the lake   and work to strengthen the monitoring system; 3.  The Ministry of the   Nature Protection has applied to UNESCO to give Lake Sevan and the   adjacent territory the status of a biosphere reserve. An official   letter from UNESCO confirmed that work in this direction has already   begun; 4.  Simulation of 1D water quality monitoring in Lake Sevan  was  carried out with the involvement of the Helmholtz Center in  Germany  and the Institute of Hydroecology and Ichthyology of the  National  Academy of Sciences; 5. On June 26, the Ministry sent an  official  letter to the Ministry of Education and Science of Germany  to conduct  large-scale monitoring work, including assessing the  nutrient balance  for the lake and defining nutrient management  objectives, developing  a model for evaluating the effectiveness of  1D (nutrients, plankton, dissolved in water oxygen), the development  of a hydrodynamic 3D  model, the assessment of water quality through  satellite remote  sensing, the assessment of various control  scenarios and the  identification of problems etc..  The areas to be  cleaned (up to 1901.5 m -770 hectares) have been  specified. In this  regard, a competition has been announced, it is  planned to complete  the cleaning work in 2019-2022. The Ministry is  developing  legislative projects aimed at reducing pollution of the  lake with  municipal sewage.  At the request of the Ministry, 14 large  business  entities operating in the coastal areas of Lake Sevan have  already  installed wastewater treatment plants at service and leisure centers.   To note, in recent months, the Lake Sevan ecosystem has  deteriorated  sharply. As a result of an increase in algae, the lake  swiftly  swamps. The quality of water has deteriorated so much that in  recent  days there has been a decline in livestock in the coastal  areas of  Sevan. 

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