by Karina Manukyan
Despite serious risks to environment, in Armenia the re-cultivation of tailing ponds is still implemented only verbally, the head of "Armenia's green union", Hakop Sanasaryan, told Arminfo correspondent.
He said that heavy metals interfere the environment from all the closed tailing ponds. As a result, not only soil but also water resources are polluted by dangerous elements. For instance, it is already for 35 years as the Dastakert tailing pond in Syunik is considered to be closed, but poisonous substances mix with Ayri river waters. The Vokhchi river is also in danger, as several tailing ponds are allocated at it, and are not isolated well.
He emphasized that tailing ponds should be blocked off by a barbed wire. But this requirement is not observed and cattle is tended near the tailing ponds, he said.
Moreover, residents of the nearby villages gather vulnerary plans and raise vegetables in dangerous zones. For instance, despite concentration of heavy metals in soil and water, not far from the Kajaran tailing pond people raise potato, garlic and onion.
When accumulating in a body, these elements damage reproduction. It is very much dangerous, as the negative effect from eating products with high concentration of azoque and hard lead emerge in several years, dozens of years and even affect next generations.
"I think that Health Ministry should pay great attention at this problem. But the latter fully ignores the created situation. This is a serious crime", - Sanasaryan said.
It is already for many years that ecologists draw attention at the fact that mining in Armenia is not in line with development of tourism and organic agriculture. According to experts, the environment is polluted by heavy metals so much that they penetrate the food chains. The root of the issue is in serious problems in the legislative field as well as in the large scale corruption.