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 Tuesday, July 11 2023 14:55
Alina Hovhannisyan

Authorities decided to increase volume of water intake from Lake Sevan to 240 million cbm

Authorities decided to increase volume of water intake from Lake  Sevan to 240 million cbm

ArmInfo. A draft law on  increasing the amount of water intake from Lake Sevan from 170  million cubic meters to 240 million cubic meters conditioned by the  weather conditions of the year, the fullness of water basins and  reservoirs and the main indicators of water supply of rivers, was  approved in the National Assembly of Armenia by the ruling majority  in the first reading. The project was supported by 64 MPs, 20 voted  against its adoption.

As the press service of the RA NA reports, RA Deputy Minister of  Territorial Administration and Infrastructure Vache Terteryan stated  this presenting the draft law on Making Addenda to law on Approving  the Annual and Complex Plans for Restoration, Protection,  Reproduction and Use of Lake Sevan Ecosystem at the NA extraordinary  session on July 11.

The draft, as required by law, defines the procedure and directions  for the consumption of electricity produced due to the release of  additional water. Vache Terteryan informed that regular and public  reports were presented regarding the situation.  In response to the  questions of the MPs Sergey Bagratyan, Gevorg Papoyan, Lilit  Stepanyan, Hovik Aghazaryan, Artsvik Minasyan, Vache Terteryan  clarified that this year water intake from Sevan started on May 14,  and last year on June 3, that is, the process began about half a  month earlier. Presenting the indicators of water intake from Sevan,  the Deputy Minister said that until today 82.3 million cubic meters  were taken from Sevan, 81.38 million cubic meters were transferred to  Sevan through the hydrotechnical system of Arpa-Sevan tunnel. "The  same indicator in 2022 was 148 million cubic meters. This proves that  we really have a serious shortage of water this year," Vache  Terteryan said.

"As of today, we have 1956 cm, that is, after May 14, the level of  Sevan rose by 13 cm.  This is in the case when the water taken for  our irrigation and the water transported through Arpa-Sevan are  almost equivalent", the Deputy Minister recorded.

MP Artsvik Minasyan opined that there was a possibility of additional  water intake according to the 2019 regulations, but according to the  2019 law, water release would be excluded if the balance is negative.  "Now you, violating the law you adopted, announce something else," he  said. Gevorg Papoyan added in his turn. "We can refuse, there is no  problem, but if the amount of water runs out, say, on August 5, what  will we answer to hundreds of thousands of our citizens of Armavir  and Ararat regions? 600.000 people live there for that water," the  representative of the Civil Contract Faction said noting that the  change is made to have the opportunity to take more than 170 million  cubic meters of water. Gegham Nazaryan also opined that a proposal  inconsistent with the law was presented and called on his colleagues  to reject it. Zaruhi Batoyan spoke about the expediency of having  both complex and annual programmes in case of Lake Sevan.  According  to Artur Khachatryan's assessment, the justifications are not clear,  significant statistical data regarding annual precipitation, annual  average temperature, release of water before the start of irrigation  and other sectoral problems were not presented. Arman Yeghoyan  inquired whether, in case of the construction of reservoirs, it is  possible to have a clear amount of water intake from Sevan or there  is no need for it.

Presenting the viewpoint of Armenia Faction, Artsvik Minasyan  mentioned that the solution to the problem is not taking additional  water from Sevan.

In his final speech, Deputy Minister Vache Terteryan presented  clarifications on a number of issues. According to the Deputy  Minister, the long-term solution to the problem should be a  conceptual change in water use.

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