In 2021, together with our Armenian partners, the Center for Community Mobilization and Support (CCMS) and EcoLur, we continued to map pollution in the Armenian regions of...read more
The land of mountains and temples is threatened by metal mining. Armenia offers enormous mineral wealth, the mining of which has been gaining momentum in recent years. Unfortunately, heavy industry based on non-ferrous metals carries great risks for the environment and the health of the local population.
Problems can arise in the vicinity of mines due to the common use of toxic chemicals, which - as well as waste - run the risk of leakage into the surrounding soil or water after mining. Unfortunately, around the world, we are facing industry's reluctance to invest in security and protection processes. Our common task is therefore to monitor the situation and enforce the protection of the environment and the population.
In Arnika, together with the Armenian organizations Center for Community and Mobilization Support (CCMS) and EcoLur, we have been running a campaign since 2018 to map pollution with heavy metals and other pollutants in the northern region of Lori, which has a long tradition of the mining industry. We are dedicated to continuous monitoring of both environmental pollution,and the level of burden on the health of local people, especially the child population. The results of the monitoring contributed to several successes. We managed to mobilize the local population, make the problem more visible on the local and state level, speed up the closure of an old smelting factory,and open up the topic of alternative development of the region.
Thanks to the support from the Transition Promotion program of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic, we can pass on Czech experience and help secure a future without poisons in Armenia as well.
In the past, specifically in 2010-2011, we have decided to help local civic associations get rid of the environmental burden of toxic substances - pesticides such as DDT, lindane and others. In 2018, we teamed up with local Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment and EcoLur to help local farmers establish sustainable pesticide-free farming in the Ararat and Armavir Marz. At the same time, in cooperation with Czech chemists, we mapped old ecological burdens and the results of monitoring contributed to better protection against the release of toxic substances into the environment.