ArmInfo.The outflow of waste into the waters of the Voghchi River occurred due to a pipe break in the Zangezur Copper-Molybdenum Combine going to the tailing dump. This was reported to journalists by Minister of the Environment Eric Grigoryan on October 17 after a government meeting.
Earlier, before the Cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said that this morning in an emergency in the Syunik region - polluted water flowed from the tailing dump into the waters of the Voghchi River below the cities of Kapan and Kajaran, from which the river turned brown. It turned out that the waste storage at the Zangezur Copper-Molybdenum Plant near the village of Nerkin Giratakh was damaged. As the Minister of Emergency Situations of Armenia Felix Tsolakyan stated, local rescuers informed about water pollution - the owners of the tailing dump themselves tried to hide this fact. Before the rescuers arrived at the scene, the damaged area of the waste storage was repaired.
According to Grigoryan, employees of the regional structure of the Inspectorate for Nature Protection and Subsurface Resources took water samples from the river. The health inspection authority also examines the samples taken. Soon the amount of damage to the environment will be established, on the basis of which the amount of compensation will also be determined.
At the same time, as the Minister admitted, the current regulation on restoration of environmental damage needs to be substantially revised. So, the legislator has set such ridiculous tariffs for damages that it is often more profitable for the owner of the mine to pay a fine than to modernize the infrastructure, in particular, to change the same pipes. In this regard, as Grigoryan pointed out, the ministry is currently reviewing the system. It is planned to significantly increase the size of the fine for damage to the environment and the country's water basin.