The theme of today’s holiday marking World Environment Day is - Green Economy: Does it include you?
Inga Zarafyan, president of the Ecolur environmental NGO, told reporters today that while the Armenian government has often stated that it has assisted in the development of a green economy, the decisions it has taken proves that it is only interested in the exploitation of the nation’s natural resources for short-term profits.
“There’s a visible inclination in the government that these resources must be exploited in the shortest time possible,” Zarafyan said, adding that this contradicts the underlying principles of fostering a green economy.
(The UN Environment Programme defines the Green Economy as one that results in improved human well-being and social equity, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities. In its simplest expression, a green economy can be thought of as one which is low carbon, resource efficient and socially inclusive)
Zarafyan also noted that land use zoning categories have been modified in recent years by the government, leading to an annual loss of 7-8,000 hectares of agricultural purpose land.
This, she said, is leading to the gradually desertification of the country.
“Environmentalism must be advocated from an oppositionist perspective. This is impossible in Armenia where the minster of the environment is a representative of the vested system,” Zarafyan said.
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