Armenia Does Not Have Toxic Waste Dumps

YEREVAN (Noyan Tapan)–Armenia’s controller for hazardous materials and toxic waste Anahid Alexandrian announced that there was a great amount of such materials waiting to be disposed in Armenia today–expressing concern over the lack of required industrial capacity for disposing or processing of such materials.

Alexandrian said that hospitals–drug stores as well as relief organization were constantly applying to the department for help in destroying their stored expired drugs or to allow for their incineration at the Nairit plant.

"Expired drugs are considered as harmful wastes according to the Basel Convention," said Alexandrian–and the technology of the given production doesn’t provide for activities connected with heir destruction. Thus–at present it is not allowed to burn drugs unfit for use at "Nairit" as it was practiced before.

Alexandrian said–the problem was much broader–since aside from expired medication–great amounts of other chemicals and pesticides–most of which were unfit for use at stores–industrial companies–scientific-research institutes or farms–still existed in Armenia.

"It is necessary to make an inventory as soon as possible–and catalogue the quantity of toxic wastes," said Alexandrian.

She added that it would be necessary to initiate ecologically safe and more effective mechanisms for the dumping of those hazardous materials.

The issue of financial responsibility must also be settled–Alexandrian pointed out–since the disposal of hazardous wastes required huge financial expenditure.

The cost for disposal of one ton of such wastes is estimated at $1,500.

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