The EIA process of the “Ayg-1” project is close to completion
On April 12, the fourth public hearings on the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) on the construction of the “Ayg-1” photovoltaic plant, a joint project of the Armenian National Interests Fund (ANIF) and Masdar Company from Abu Dhabi, UAE was held in Dashtadem and Talin communities of the Aragatsotn region of Armenia.
“Ayg-1” will be the largest solar plant in Armenia. The Government of Armenia has set a target of reching its renewable energy production to 15% of the overall capacity by 2030. “Ayg-1” will provide for half of this target.
The representatives of “EA Energy Advisory” consultancy group, coordinating the EIA works and Masdar, presented to the residents of the affected communities a brief description of the activities and planned measures for the assessment of possible environmental and social impacts. Representatives of communities, community leaders, as well as representatives of environmental non-governmental organizations were present in both communities.
Masdar representative Carlos Ponte, informed that the solar plants do not have any impact on people’s health.
Only 6 and 17 percent of the total pasture area of the affected Talin and Dashtadem communities, accordingly, will be used for the construction. Carlos Ponte also clarified the proposed community social support programs.
After the presentation of the EIA, the representatives of Masdar and “EA Energy Advisory” answered to the questions, which mainly related to the company donation and general financial allocations provided to the community within the framework of the project. Questions were also raised regarding the start of construction works, the involvement of labor at various stages of the project implementation and the planning of access to the roads during construction.
The final hearings are scheduled to be held next month, after which the EIA will be submitted to the Ministry of Environment for approval. After the approval of the EIA by the Ministry, Masdar will announce a tender for the selection of the construction company for the project.
About 200 million US dollars will be invested for the construction of the 200 MW Ayg-1 photovoltaic power plant, and the tariff for the produced energy will be 0.0290 USD per kilowatt hour (kWh). 85 percent share of “Masdar Armenia” joint venture belongs to Masdar, while 15 percent is owned by ANIF.
The project is planned to be operational in 2025.