Armenia

As outlined in Armenia's National Commmunication (1998) climate change will cause significant negative consequences for the nature of Armenia. Thus, the application of measures and approaches, directed to the maximum reduction of these consequences and cease of the environmental degradation processes should become the important component of the strategy in responding to climate change.

Basic adaptation measures for the natural ecosystems of Armenia are the following:

  • Creation of optimal landscape-zone structure for the republic as a whole (increase of the forest share given the preservation of landscape diversity);
  • Gradual increase of forest cover area for 266500 ha by the year 2050, i.e. from present 11.2 % of territory up to 20.1 % through annual forest planting, including the area of protective woodland belt for 5300ha; making of a large-scale timber industry plantations of accelerated rotation; application of integrated system of forest protection from pests, illnesses, weeds, cuttings, cattle pasture, fires, etc.
  • Allocation of reserves and specially protected natural territories for the mitigation of general anthropogenic pressure on vulnerable ecosystems, including intrazonal coastal cenoses of desert and semi-desert zones, and also the Alpine communities for the realization of their own adaptability at forecasted climate change;
  • Introduction of endangered species, which are in proper (similar) biocenoses, which will be preserved in case of the probable climate change;
  • Preservation of genetic fund of the most vulnerable and valuable species by their maintenance and cultivation in artificial conditions, preservation of genetic material in seed banks, etc.

The Republic of Armenia is located in Southern Transcaucasus, on a joint of Caucasus with Forward Asia and occupies a small part of the extensive Armenian plateau. On the North and East Armenia borders with Georgia and Azerbaijan, on the West and South-East with Turkey and Iran accordingly. The Republic does not have access to sea. The Republic of Armenia has an area of 29800 km2, which is approximately equal to the territory of Belgium and Albania. The greatest extent from North-West to South-East is 360 km, and from West to East - 200km. The capital of the country is Yerevan.

Armenia is a typical mountainous country. About 90% of its territory is over 1000m above sea level, including 40% - over 2000m. Average height of territory makes 1830m, the highest - 4090m, the lowest - 350m.

Geographical situation of Armenia, complex mountain relief and high-altitude zoning of territory have caused unique variety of natural conditions and natural resources. The territory of Armenia is specific for strongly pronounced vertical alternation of six basic climate types - from dry subtropical up to severe Alpine, and temperature contrasts. In the low-lands the average air temperature in July and August reaches 24-26oC, and in the Alpine belt the temperature does not exceed 10oC. In January, depending on the height and peculiarities of the relief, the temperature varies within the bounds of 1-13oC. In Armenia the absolute maximum and minimum temperatures reach 41oC and -42oC.

In general, Armenia is distinguished by aridity - the average annual precipitation here reaches 570 mm. The significant part of the territory - over the 60% - receives less than 600 mm, 20 % - less 400mm, and on the bottom of the closed basins - only 200-300mm.

Armenia lays in the same geographic breadth as Spain, Italy and Greece, that is in a subtropical zone. Therefore one of the most characteristic features of its climate is intensity and abundance of solar radiation, which, accordingly, make 1.46 cal/cm2 and 2500 hours per year.

Related Content

Supporting Armenia to advance their NAP process

Country background, Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Agreement

Armenia is a small landlocked country in the Caucasus region with a mostly mountainous terrain, fast flowing rivers and few forests. Its highland continental climate means it is subject to hot summers and cold winters. Agriculture is a core sector in Armenia, employing 44 percent of the working population, although its contribution to the economy is on the decline, with the services and industrial sectors growing instead. Climate change is already affecting Armenia, with an annual mean temperature increase of 1.03 °C and decrease in precipitation of 10 percent recorded during the period 1935 – 2012. Extreme weather events, including heavy rainfall and hailstorms, are increasing in frequency, and desertification and land degradation are set to worsen. Agricultural lands cover 69 percent of the territory and 80 percent of these lands are already being affected by climate change impacts, with decreasing crop yields projected in the future.
 
Although Armenia is in the final stages of transitioning from a semi-presidential system to a parliamentary republic, it has developed an institutional framework that can facilitate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the goals of the Paris Agreement. The Strategic Program of Prospective Development 2014-2025, the overarching development strategy, mentions the limitations that climate change will pose to economic growth. More specifically, the National Strategy on Disaster Risk Management (2017) integrates climate change and incorporates SDGs. 
 
These policies and strategies take a strong focus on mitigation, however, in Armenia’s INDC, which later became their First NDC, as they ratified the Paris Agreement in 2017, adaptation is given more weight. The NDC prioritises the following sectors as those most vulnerable to climate change and in need of adaptation interventions: natural ecosystems; human health; water resource management; agriculture, including fisheries and forests; energy; human settlements and infrastructure; and tourism. It identifies the foundation of its adaptation strategy to be the application of “an ecosystem-based approach to mitigation and adaptation actions, giving preference to balanced and combined actions”. Another key document, that reflects on the consequences of climate change scenarios, is the Third National Communication to the UNFCCC, submitted in 2015. The Fourth communication will be developed in 2019.
 

How has the NAP-GSP supported to date?

 

Conducted a mission to Armenia

 

Between 7 – 9 December, 2016, the NAP-GSP undertook a preliminary mission to identify Armenia’s strategic priorities regarding the NAP process. Through a stakeholder roundtable, qualitative interviews and extensive desk research, an assessment of relevant initiatives on climate mainstreaming and of the institutional framework and capacities relevant to the NAP process were conducted.

 

Production of a Stocktaking Report

 
Informed by the mission and the consultations with key stakeholders, a Stocktaking Report was produced. The report identified the most pressing weaknesses regarding climate change related risks and adaptation to be: (i) a lack of clear processes for updating risk information and for prioritising adaptation measures; (ii) a lack of awareness and capacity of sector ministries in terms of climate change and adaptation; and (iii) a lack of integration of climate-induced risks and adaptation into planning processes. The Stocktaking Report includes a roadmap for the NAP process to address these gaps.
Helped build capacity and  facilitated access to additional climate finance
 

 

Armenia submitted their Readiness and Preparatory Support Proposal to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) in February 2016, and was one of the first countries to request GCF support for their NAP process. Click for details on the approved project - National Adaptation Plan (NAP) to advance medium and long-term adaptation planning in Armenia.

 

 

Region/Country: 
Level of Intervention: 
Key Collaborators: 
Funding Source: 
Location: 
Display Photo: 
Project Dates: 
2018
Timeline: 
Month-Year: 
Sep 2015
Description: 
Armenia submits thier Intend Nationally Determined Contribution (INDC) to the Paris Agreement
Month-Year: 
Jun 2016
Description: 
Government delegation from Armenia attends the NAP-GSP Eastern European, Caucasus and Central Asia Regional Workshop, Chisinau, Moldova
Month-Year: 
Dec 2016
Description: 
A stakeholder roundtable is held to identify the strategic priorities for Armenia’s NAP process
Month-Year: 
Dec 2016
Description: 
A Government Decree requests that a Concept of Ecosystem Approach to Climate Change Adaptation, and a NAP, are developed and submitted to government for approval
Month-Year: 
Dec 2016
Description: 
Armenia begins drafting a Readiness proposal to submit to the GCF for potential funding to support the NAP process
Month-Year: 
Feb 2016
Description: 
A Stocktaking Report and a preliminary roadmap for advancing the NAP process in Armenia is developed
Month-Year: 
Feb 2016
Description: 
The Readiness and Preparatory Support Proposal is submitted to the GCF
Month-Year: 
Mar 2017
Description: 
Armenia ratifies the Paris Agreement

National Adaptation Plans in focus: Lessons from Armenia

This briefing on the process to formulate and implement the National Adaptation Plan in Armenia considers firstly the country context and the climate change risks. The groundwork for supporting the NAP is considered, covering the policy, planning and budgetary framework, priority adaptation sectors in NDC, climate assessments, the implementation of adaptation actions and plans thus far. The briefing contains a timeline of the Armenian NAP process. Challenges, successes and opportunities are also discussed.

Building resilience through integrated climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction: experience of Armenia

A presentation by Simon Papyan, the Deputy Minister of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia, on the experience of building resilience through integrated climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction in Armenia.

Armenia's Assessment of Legal and Institutional Framework for Disaster Management and Disaster Risk Information Systems – September 2009

This study gives an overview of the current strengths, weaknesses, gaps and duplications in the legislative and institutional framework in the context of disaster risk reduction in Armenia. It details out the present structure and status of implementation of the various activities under this programme and has also enabled the availability of a strong disaster management database in the country. 

Capacity Building for Optimization of Information and Monitoring System in Armenia - Project Document (December 2007)

The project will strengthen Armenia's capacity for environmental information management in order to improve the reporting process to the Conventions, as well as to ensure national sustainable development through improved monitoring and information management for better environmental policy development. Environmental monitoring and information management is critical for understanding the current status and dynamic changes in the state of environment.

Capacity Building for Optimization of Information and Monitoring System in Armenia

The project will strengthen Armenia's capacity for environmental information management in order to improve the reporting process to the Conventions, as well as to ensure national sustainable development through improved monitoring and information management for better environmental policy development. Environmental monitoring and information management is critical for understanding the current status and dynamic changes in the state of environment. Consistent and regular monitoring, research and data analysis provide the essential foundation for adequate policy response and timely and appropriate national decision-making process. Hence, the issue has both global and national priority dimensions.

Photos: 
Region/Country: 
Level of Intervention: 
Coordinates: 
POINT (44.5093000405 40.183055439)
Primary Beneficiaries: 
Through improved identification of national circumstances, government agencies and other actors will increase their abilities to insulate at risk urban and rural populations from the adverse effects of climate change.
Funding Source: 
Financing Amount: 
480,000
Co-Financing Total: 
13,000
Project Details: 

Armenia is a small, land locked and alpine country with a complex relief structure (29,800 km2 and 3.2 million people) located in the region of Transcaucasia. It is ranked 83 in the 2005 Human Development Report with an HDI value of 0.759, and has a GDP of US$5,100 (2005 est.) per capita (111th in the world).

The main current environmental issues as soil pollution from toxic chemicals such as DDT; the energy crisis of the 1990s led to deforestation when citizens scavenged for firewood; pollution of the Hrazdan (Razdan) and Aras Rivers; the draining of Sevana Lich (Lake Sevan), a result of its use as a source for hydropower, threatens drinking water supplies and the restart of Metsamor nuclear power plant in spite of its location in a seismically active zone.

This project will strengthen the national capacity for environmental information management in the country in order to improve the reporting process to the Conventions, as well as to ensure national sustainable development through improved monitoring and information management for better environmental policy development.  Environmental monitoring and information management is critical for understanding the current status and dynamic changes in the state of environment. Consistent and regular monitoring, research and data analysis provide the essential foundation for adequate policy response and timely and appropriate national decision-making process. Hence, the issue has both global and national priority dimensions.

As outlined in Armenia's Initial National Commmunication (1998) climate change will cause significant negative consequences for the nature of Armenia. Thus, the application of measures and approaches, directed to the maximum reduction of these consequences and cease of the environmental degradation processes should become the important component of the strategy in responding to climate change.

Basic adaptation measures for the natural ecosystems of Armenia are the following:

  • Creation of optimal landscape-zone structure for the republic as a whole (increase of the forest share given the preservation of landscape diversity);
  • Gradual increase of forest cover area for 266500 ha by the year 2050, i.e. from present 11.2 % of territory up to 20.1 % through annual forest planting, including the area of protective woodland belt for 5300ha; making of a large-scale timber industry plantations of accelerated rotation; application of integrated system of forest protection from pests, illnesses, weeds, cuttings, cattle pasture, fires, etc.
  • Allocation of reserves and specially protected natural territories for the mitigation of general anthropogenic pressure on vulnerable ecosystems, including intrazonal coastal cenoses of desert and semi-desert zones, and also the Alpine communities for the realization of their own adaptability at forecasted climate change;
  • Introduction of endangered species, which are in proper (similar) biocenoses, which will be preserved in case of the probable climate change;
  • Preservation of genetic fund of the most vulnerable and valuable species by their maintenance and cultivation in artificial conditions, preservation of genetic material in seed banks, etc.

In general, Armenia is distinguished by aridity - the average annual precipitation here reaches 570 mm. The significant part of the territory - over the 60% - receives less than 600 mm, 20 % - less 400mm, and on the bottom of the closed basins - only 200-300mm.

Armenia lays in the same geographic breadth as Spain, Italy and Greece, that is in a subtropical zone. Therefore one of the most characteristic features of its climate is intensity and abundance of solar radiation, which, accordingly, make 1.46 cal/cm2 and 2500 hours per year. This suggests the country can benefit substantially from solar power. 

Armenia is amongst the first countries of the region that embarked on a National Capacity Self Assessment (NCSA) process for global environmental management. The NCSA project, funded by UNDP-GEF, provided resources to the government of Armenia to identify and determine the nature of critical capacity constraints and priority capacity needs faced by Armenia, as they relate to global environmental management. The main issues identified during this comprehensive and fully country-driven self-assessment are problems with the current information management system, which includes data collection, maintenance, analysis, information exchange and information accessibility.

The quality and accessibility of relevant data and information on the current state of the environment as well as the information management responsibilities delegated to the national institutions are the priority issues; capacity gaps exist at all levels: individual, institutional and systemic. This MSP will address theses priority issues by strengthening the monitoring and the information management capacities in Armenia, in order to improve the national environmental information and monitoring system related to the implementation of the 3 Rio Conventions.

The NCSA project has been closely linked with relevant on-going activities such as the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper (PRSP) discussions and the initiation steps of its implementation in Armenia, the identification of the Millennium Development Goals and their indicators, the process of Environment for Europe, the development of a national policy on sustainable development and the elaboration of the UN Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) and the UNDP Country Programme Document (CPD).  The capacity assessments were conducted within the context of these activities to ensure that the project would be fully responsive to the national context and priorities, and to add value to these other processes. 

Expected Key Results and Outputs: 

Primary Objective: To introduce a national integrated and coordinated environmental information management and monitoring system in order to strengthen the environmental information availability and the national environmental reporting capacity of Armenia to fulfil its obligations under the 3 Rio Conventions.         

  • Outcome 1: The legal and regulatory framework is strengthened to enable a coordinated multi-agency information management and monitoring system.
    • Output 1.1: The Laws and Codes contain the proper legislation which will provide the necessary provisions to strengthen the existing environmental information management and monitoring system.
    • Output 1.2: The legislation details the appropriate institutional framework.
  • Outcome 2: The institutional framework capacity is strengthened to enable a coordinated multi-agency information management and monitoring system.
    • Output 2.1: An environmental monitoring coordination body is established under the MNP.
    • Output 2.2: The relevant institutions for a coordinated multi-agency information management and monitoring system have the necessary capacity to fulfil their mandate.
    • Output 2.3: Training curricula for environmental information management and monitoring system developed and integrated into the in-service training system for civil servants.
  • Outcome 3: Environmental information management and monitoring standards, norms, procedures and IT architectures are upgraded and respond to current national and international environmental information and monitoring needs.
    • Output 3.1: Standards, norms, procedures and architectures are developed to support the implementation of an effective environmental information management and monitoring system.
Monitoring & Evaluation: 

The project will be monitored and evaluated in accordance with established UNDP/GEF procedures and will be conducted by the project team and the UNDP Country Office with support from UNDP-GEF. The project management reports will be presented to the Project Steering Committee (PSC) for endorsement and be distributed to the UNDP-GEF and MNP. A list of performance indicators (and their relevant targets) to measure project progress were identified. The project will use a capacity development monitoring and evaluation scorecard to monitor the project capacity development progress. It will monitor the relevant seven capacity development indicators for this project, which are of direct relevance to the improved information and monitoring system for global environmental management in Armenia (see table below). Using the baseline data collected during the PDF-A, this scorecard will be used to review/rate the relevant capacity development indicators at inception, at mid-point of project implementation and finally at the end of project implementation. This capacity development monitoring tools will be used by the project implementation team to monitor the project capacity development progress and also by the evaluators to conduct the MTE and the final evaluation.

Contacts: 
UNDP
Armen Martirosyan
Country Officer
UNDP
Vardan Tserunyan
Project Coordinator
UNDP
Marina Olshanskaya
Regional Technical Advisor
Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Location: 
Project Status: 
Display Photo: 

Armenia Second National Communication

The creation of a National Communication offers countries the opportunity to contribute with technically sound studies and information that can be used for designing mitigation and adaptation measures, and project proposals that can and will help increase their resilience to the impacts of climate change. Activities generally include: V&A assessments, Greenhouse Gas Inventory preparation, Mitigation Analysis or Education, and awareness raising activities.The ultimate goal is the integration of climate change considerations into relevant social, economic and environmental policies and actions.

Key vulnerabilities identified in Armenia's National Communications (2010):

  • Agriculture/Food Security
  • Water Resources
  • Biodiversity and natural ecosystems
  • Public health
  • Settlements and infrustructure

 

Photos: 
Region/Country: 
Level of Intervention: 
Key Collaborators: 
Coordinates: 
POINT (44.692379758232 40.424083660346)
Primary Beneficiaries: 
Through improved identification of national circumstances, government agencies and other actors will increase their abilities to insulate at risk urban and rural populations from the adverse effects of climate change.
Funding Source: 
Assessments and Background Documents
Financing Amount: 
$410,000
Project Details: 

Potential Adaptation Measures identified in Armenia's Second National Communication:

Agriculture and Food Security

  • Breeding and introduction of drought resistant, dry resistant hybrids adapted to local conditions, including the preservation and spread of local traditional species with the mentioned characteristics
  • Assessment of climate change related risks and introduction of a crop insurance system
  • Vaccinations of livestock
  • Introduction of crops species resistant to diseases and pests
  • Implementation of measures for improving moisture preservation characteristics of the soil
  • Shifting the farming zone to areas with adequate moisture

Water Resources

  • Implement measures for accurate assessment of water reserves
  • Undertake institutional and technical measures for efficient use of water resources
  • Improve the extensive storage of water resources
  • Reduction of losses due to leakages in the system

Biodiversity and Natural Ecosystems

  • Follow grazing norms and pasture rules, developed on scientific basis, in the majority of ecosystems used as pastures and hayfields
  • Properly zone Specially Protected Areas of Nature (SPANs) for biodiversity protection,taking into account climate change and shifting of the zones upwards on mountain slopes
  • In order to control the mass spread of pests and diseases, it is necessary to organize regular studies for diagnosing the phytosanitary conditions of forests, and based on the results, develop and implement integrated measures using different methods for forest pest control, including aerial spraying

Settlements and Infrastructure

  • Allocate public financing for implementation of detailed studies on landslides, inundations,mudflows, floods and rockfalls
  • Develop short- and long-term forecasting methods for floods, mudflows and spring inundations.
  • Regularly clean the river beds, widen or heighten the banks and their reinforcement

Public Health

  • Medical examination of the population for identifying and controlling vulnerable groups
  • Early warning systems
  • Adequate clean water supply
  • Maintenance and improvement of the temperature comfort in buildings (ventilation, air conditioning, shadowing buildings)
  • Improvement of settlement microclimate (fountains, green zones)
  • Promotion to and introduction of relevant behavior (siesta)
  • Sanitary-hygienic monitoring

 

Expected Key Results and Outputs: 
  • Sustainable development and the integration of climate change concerns into medium- and long-term planning
  • Inventories of anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of greenhouse gases
  • Measures contributing to addressing climate change
  • Research and systematic observation
  • Climate change impacts, adaptation measures and response strategies
  • Education, training and public awareness
Monitoring & Evaluation: 

In 1992, countries joined an international treaty, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, to cooperatively consider what they could do to limit average global temperature increases and the resulting climate change, and to cope with whatever impacts were, by then, inevitable.

Parties to the Convention must submit national reports on implementation of the Convention to the Conference of the Parties (COP). The required contents of national communications and the timetable for their submission are different for Annex I and non-Annex I Parties. This is in accordance with the principle of "common but differentiated responsibilities" enshrined in the Convention.

The core elements of the national communications for both Annex I and non-Annex I Parties are information on emissions and removals of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and details of the activities a Party has undertaken to implement the Convention. National communications usually contain information on national circumstances, vulnerability assessment, financial resources and transfer of technology, and education, training and public awareness.

Since 1994, governments have invested significant time and resources in the preparation, collection and validation of data on GHG emissions, and the COP has made determined efforts to improve the quality and consistency of the data, which are ensured by established guidelines for reporting. Non-Annex I Parties receive financial and technical assistance in preparing their national communications, facilitated by the UNFCCC secretariat.

Contacts: 
UNDP
Yamil Bonduki
Coordinator, National Communications Support Programme (NCSP)
UNDP
Rubina Stepanyan
Republic of Armenia Ministry of Nature Protection
Aram Gabrielyan
Climate-Related Hazards Addressed: 
Location: 
Funding Source Short Code: 
TRUST
Project Status: 
Display Photo: 

Project Document Armenia Adaptation MSP

The Project Document gives detailed information on the GEF-SPA Armenia project. The ProDoc includes a Situation Analysis, with the Global, National and Regional Context, Climate Change Context, Past and Ongoing Activities in the country, Related Donor Assistance, and a Barrier Analysis. Also included is the Project Strategy, Operational Approach, Results and Resources Framework, Budget and Annual Work Plan, Management Arrangements and Coordination Structures, the Monitoring Framework and Evaluation and the Legal Context.