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There is a logging area, but no reforestation

Forests are our youth; deserts are our aging, so how fast we’ll cut our forests as earlier senility will come. In recent times Stepanavan Aarhus Center had received numerous complaints from citizens regarding logging in the region. For that reason a meeting was organized with A. Mikoyan, director of “ArmForest” SNCO of Stepanavan forestry. At the invitation of the Aarhus Center A. Balayan, correspondent of the “Zhoghovurd” newspaper also participated in the meeting.
Let us note, that earlier at the public request the coordinator of Stepanavan Aarhus Center made an inquiry addressed to A. Mikoyan,

director of “ArmForest” SNCO of Stepanavan forestry, asking for clarifications on the cases of deforestation in the Stepanavan forestry enterprise and surrounding areas, reforestation and fire prevention measures. During the meeting were discussed both the mentioned and other issues related to the forest protection.

A. Mikoyan, director of “ArmForest” SNCO of Stepanavan forestry, presented the required information in detail, arguing that all the cuttings in Stepanavan forestry enterprise were planned, legal and mapped.
For example, in 2013 pine trees were cut down, in the two transition logging areas of “Chkantstala” section. As for the illegal tree cutting, in 2012 illegally were cut down 14 trees, which about had been drafted 4 minutes. According to A. Mikoyan in 2013, illegal logging has been reduced: 1 tree has been cut down, about which was taken 1 deforestation minute.

In 2011-2013, 61 cases of illegal tree felling were registered in Stepanavan branch of the forestry by the State Environmental Inspection, for which a criminal case was instituted.

Since 2011 the residents of near-forest communities were allowed to make free use of firewood: up to 8 cubic meters for per family. In 2011 was stored 352.1 cubic meters, in 2012-776.3 cubic meters, in 2013-466.7 cubic meters of firewood for free.

According to the speaker, there is no planned reforestation as such, but today there is natural regeneration at the forest, the forestry even is providing seedlings to forest-poor regions of Armenia. Because of the financial crisis, since 2008 has been suspended financing of the measures mentioned by the Ministry of Agriculture.
In recent times reforestation was implemented in 2009 within the frameworks of the Japanese program in the area of 25 hectares. For 2014 tree planting activities are planned at the 12 ha area, but the application has not yet been confirmed.

Manya Meliqjanyan
Coordinator of Stepanavan Aarhus Center
Tell: 093315108
E-mail: manya_lore@yahoo.com
Translated by Anush Beybutyan