YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Eighty out of the 89 proposed environmentalist projects submitted to the Ministry of Nature Protection were approved. Five projects were returned for revisions. Four projects were rejected. In some cases projects were approved because they were already in progress or even completed–such as a nuclear wastes depository near the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant.
Executive Director of the State Environmental Expertise Commission Artur Arakelian pointed out that the Law on Environment does not include the proper language to hold responsible those who carry out construction without the permission of the State Environmental Expertise Commission. To solve the problem–the Ministry of Nature Protection is to give permission only if complex measures are taken to protect the environment. Public hearings are also held.
After holding public hearings on the construction of a filling station in the 4th Nork district–permission was given on that condition that greenery was planted on the adjacent area.
Environmental examinations are currently being conducted on the feasibility of restoring and re-operating the Sotk and Maghradzor mines–the experimental unit for processing crude oil at the "Polivinilatsetat" plant–and the projects of protecting and developing the Arzakansk springs to improve the water supply to Yerevan and surrounding villages.