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Local government and interested public awareness raising activities in Akori and Odzoun
On May 25 in Akori and on May 27 in Odzoun communities Alaverdi Aarhus Center has organized training courses covering environmental legislation of the RA and the Aarhus Convention. The purpose was raising awareness of the local government in communities and the public concerned.
The training courses were attended by employees of village municipalities, city council members, students, community members, as well as the Aarhus Centre volunteers. To them were introduced the international conventions ratified by the RA, environmental national legislation of the RA and information on the Constitution, in details was covered the Aarhus
Convention. The majority of attendees for the first time were informed about the Convention.Informing in details on the obligations of local government and the public enshrined by the law raised many issues among the participants.

In Odzun to the question of the participants what gives the convention to society, the center volunteers presented specific examples on how to participate in decision making important for the community since the preliminary stages, how the public has opportunities to access to information and to manage it.

During the active discussion was evident the enthusiasm of community dwellers, during which they expressed their opinions, underscored the priority issues of concern to the community. There were many unresolved issues in the communities.

In Odzun with a population of approximately 5,000 people, among the listed issues urgent were the issues of landfills, sewage treatment plant, asphalting of roads, air pollution, land degradation, energy saving, agricultural sales, increase in the number of foxes and fighting against crop pests problems. Issues which have no possible solutions with only limited budget of the community.

In Akori village primary were considered the health care issues, which were directly linked to air pollution.

In the mentioned communities were talked about the reduction of environmental subventions, as well as about resetting them in 2016. The participants highly appreciated conducting awareness raising measures and discoveries of community issues.

The participants were mostly encouraged by the fact of having an Aarhus Centre volunteer in their villages, which was perceived as a “village Ambassadors” on environmental issues. It was highlighted the cooperation with the Aarhus Centre, the uniformity and consistency of their rights and community issues.

Anush Evoyan
Coordinator of Alaverdi Aarhus Centre
E-mail: info_alaverdi@aarhus.am
Translated by Anush Beybutyan