Access to renewable and efficient energy in municipalities of Armenia

Written by Seda Arzumanyan, Habitat for Humanity Armenia

HFH Armenia is implementing Access to Renewable and Efficient Energy in Municipalities Vayk and Spitak (AREEM) project funded by the European Union. The project is implemented in consortium with Spitak and Vayk Municipalities for a period of four years from December 2014 to December 2018.

More than half of Armenians live in collective residential housing units (429,512 units).  Three out of four units were built in the period from 1951 to 1990. Residential heating accounts for more than 30 percent of energy usage in Armenia, as previous construction technologies and heating methods did not focus on energy efficient mechanisms. There is lack of access and knowledge in application of renewable energy sources.  It is important to address the problems of residential energy efficiency because it can help to move forward on the road to energy reforms and can limit energy waste, which will reduce air pollution and emissions and help cope with climate change. Usage of renewable energy will decrease CO2 emissions.

The overall objective of the project is to support Spitak and Vayk municipalities to develop and test replicable and efficient models of energy saving through use of efficient measures and renewable sources in residential and public buildings that are incorporated in their Sustainable Energy Action Plans aligned with the Covenant of Mayors requirements. By December 2018, HFH Armenia will have decreased/saved energy use by implementing energy saving measures in the selected residential and public buildings through public awareness and knowledge sharing initiatives in Spitak and Vayq municipalities and will have created access and increase the use of renewable energy sources for courtyards and entrances lighting, hot water for selected residential and public buildings in Spitak and Vayq towns.

Within the framework of the AREEM project energy saving and efficient measures will be implemented, such as upgrades and insulation of roofs, doors and windows and/or building enveloping in 45 residential buildings (27 in Spitak and 18 in Vayk) and Culture House in Vayk. 145 pieces of photovoltaic solar panels will be installed for addressing lighting system upgrades for entrances, staircases and courtyards of selected residential buildings. Hot water will be provided through installation of solar water heaters of 65m2 and photovoltaic solar panels of 160 m2 will be installed for generating energy and using hot water for heating the swimming pool for the kids in the Spitak kindergarten. Knowledge sharing community forums will be facilitated among Spitak and Vayk municipalities and tenants will periodically discuss energy saving and efficiency issues and find solutions to replicate within their individual housing units, buildings and communities.

The AREEM project is implemented in consortium with Vayk and Spitak municipalities. Both municipalities have signed the Covenant of Mayors in 2014 supported by European Union and have committed to the implementation of the Sustainable Energy Action Plans in their communities, thus reducing 20% of CO2 emissions by 2020.

Seda Arzumanyan, MA in Social Work joined Habitat for Humanity Armenia team in 2008. Currently she serves as Fundraising Consultant. She is responsible for Fundraising of the organization. Seda has 7 years of progressive management experience and repeated success in developing social project initiatives, directing project plans and achieving revenue performance targets, as well with more than 3 years of Fundraising, Marketing, Volunteer management and Communications successful experience. She has planned and successfully implemented more than major 5 events (Press Conferences; Conferences, Trainings, Volunteer builds; Armenian Diaspora Receptions, Presentation meetings, etc.) in the US and more than 50 Public, Fundraising and Media events in Armenia; hosted more than 20 international volunteer teams. She has gained “Advanced Proposal Writing” certificate by Education for Go institution.

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