In the frame of the EU funded “Enhancing SME Competitiveness through Promotion and Wider Use of Sustainable Innovative Technologies” project a ground-breaking ceremony of the solar power plant was held in Gladzor, Vayots Dzor region today morning. The event is one of many EU initiatives on energy efficiency within EU Sustainable Energy Week in 2019 that will feature Sustainable Energy Days in Armenia through youth events, intellectual quests, painting competitions, seminars and lectures, inaugurals of solar photovoltaic power plants, biogas plant launch, sustainable greenhouse opening, and many more exciting events.
“This project is a vivid example of the EU commitment to bring energy efficiency reforms and renewable energy investment sources in Armenia to scale by actively collaborating with the Government and unblocking energy market opportunities, mentioned the EU Ambassador Piotr Świtalski in his opening remarks for the ground-breaking ceremony.
“Placement of solar power plant in Gladzor is highly important for the community. This will ensure not only energy efficiency but will provide new employment opportunities for the local people. Thanks to the European Union, Gladzor will soon have a solar power plant with the help of which solar energy will be used to reduce energy expenditures and fight for climate change”, Armen Movsisyan, Mayor of Gladzor community said.
Trdat Sargsyan, Governor of Vayots Dzor region, Vardan Avagyan, Deputy Mayor of Yeghegnadzor, representatives from national and local government, residents of the community and the beneficiaries of the project were present at the event.
The project aims to foster employment by improving competitiveness of SMEs in tourism sector in Vayots Dzor region. This will be achieved through the promotion of environmentally and financially sustainable practices, particularly, eco-tourism combined with the adoption of renewable energy sources and efficient energy practices.
Energy efficiency is one of the priority sectors of the European Union for Armenia. Many of the ongoing EU initiatives on energy sector, including a couple of Pilot Regional Development Programme EU-granted projects in Vayots Dzor/Syunik/Gegharkunik regions, and partner-supported initiatives have featured energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions throughout Armenia.
Energy efficiency is one of the most effective tools to support an economy, while contributing to the global fight for climate change. On a national scale, energy efficiency helps strengthening energy security, reducing energy expenditures and freeing up funds for expenditures in other sectors, slowing down energy demand growth. On a building scale, energy efficiency improves the utility affordability, extends building lifetime, and boosts indoor comfort.
More info on the EU Sustainable Energy Week in 2019: in Armenia à bit.ly/2WKSiA0 and in the EU and EaP countriesà http://bit.ly/31ztlqf
AREVADZOR - “Enhancing SME competitiveness through promotion and wider use of sustainable innovative technologies” project – (PRDP)
Brief Description: The project aims to foster employment by improving competitiveness of Small and Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs) in tourism sector in the central part of the Vayots Dzor Marz. This will be achieved through the promotion of environmentally friendly tourism (eco-tourism) in the area, the development of communication tools for single businesses and local institutions to attract tourists, the organisation of touristic routes in the nature of the area, the coordination of the different public and private actors' investments.
Also the adoption of renewable energy sources and efficient energy practices in the touristic sector will be fostered. A solar photovoltaic power plant will produce clean energy for the needs of the region. Solar thermal panels will be granted to Bed&Breakfasts (B&Bs) and family businesses to produce hot water. Energy checks on touristic businesses will lower energy consumption and help offering better accommodations to tourists. Training courses and individual mentoring will support households, family businesses and local authorities to learn simple practices for the development of tourism.
Actions in Brief
The project will reach its targets through several actions:
1) Construction of a 1 megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant. The plant will be managed by a Public Private Partnership made of local authorities and private B&Bs. It will produce clean energy all year round. The revenues coming from selling the energy will be re-invested in the region to create new jobs in tourism sector, new touristic routes, info points. It will conduct advertising, provide tourism-related services, and many other investments to improve the quality of life of local communities. 7 new quality jobs will be created.
2) Installation of at least 25 solar thermal panels in B&Bs and households through micro-grants, that will lower the demand of energy of eco-touristic businesses; and will introduce eco-friendly approach as a marketing tool for promoting eco-tourism in the area, supporting the creation of new jobs in the sector.
3) Training and mentoring activities will enhance the competencies and capacities of local touristic businesses in management, activities, routines and tools, with the aim to raise safety and quality of services. Local public authorities will also benefit from training sessions to learn how to increase public awareness about sustainable energy practices, to introduce practical measures to support the development of local SMEs and family business, to define strategies and implementation plans, to work together with private sector for the growth of the local touristic attractiveness. 25 new jobs will be created in the sector.
Duration: 15/12/2016 – 15/09/2019 (34 months)
Total Project Budget: EUR 2,084,951.71
EU Contribution: EUR 1,500,000.00
Location: Vayots Dzor Marz (region) of Armenia
Implementing Partners: PIN Scrl - Educational and scientific services for the University of Florence, Italy (Lead partner); Tourism Regional Center, Yeghegnadzor, Armenia; Municipality of Gladzor; Municipality of Yeghegnadzor; Jermuk Community; Yeghegis Community.