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Kristine Aghalaryan

Mini Hydro Plants Belonging to Bishop and MP are Inspected and Fined

Readers won’t be surprised to learn that in the past two years the RA Environmental Inspectorate has only managed to inspect two of the small scale hydro-plants that are popping up like mushrooms in Armenia.

What’s even more mind blowing is that the two plants the Inspectorate “inspected” were fined for various violations.

The Elegis hydro-plant, owned by Vayots Dzor Primate Bishop AbrahamMkrtchyan was fined 50,000 AMD for not having a water permit license.

The plant operated by Bazenk CJSC, owned by MP Hakob Hakobyan, who also presides over the Standing Committee for Social Issues, was fined 150,000 AMD for the same violation.

You can read more about Bishop Mkrtchyan’s foray into the hydro-plant sector here.

I should inform readers that Hetq was only able to obtain this information from the Ministry of Nature Protection after submitting two written requests.

The Ministry replied to our first request by referring us to a website that had no information about operating mini hydro-plants in Armenia.

Some argue that such plants provide renewable energy to Armenia and in fact financing has been provided by the EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) based on similar environmental justifications.

It would appear that such plants, operating as they do without necessary water permits and and in an unsupervised manner, do more harm to the environment of Armenia than good.

Hetq has published photos showing dried out river beds and waterfalls with no flowing water where such plants have been constructed to make a fast buck.