AESA Lecture

Environmental Committee (EC)

The AESA Environmental Committee (EC) was established in 1988 to provide assistance to Armenia by evaluating and solving environmental pollution problems. The EC is dedicated to raising environmental awareness within Armenia and champion programs that have a long term effect on improving the environment.

Outline:
Missions in Armenia
- Fact Finding Mission
- Workshops
- Blood Lead Level Study in Armenia
- Water Quality in the Republic of Armenia
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Missions to Armenia

The EC worked to provide assistance with issues related to Lake Sevan, national preserves, landfill management, lead exposure, and education issues. Members of the EC published numerous technical papers in various journals and newspapers to address different issues in Armenia.

 

Fact Finding Mission

The first activity of the EC took place in 1988. A team of five Armenian environmental specialists conducted a two-week fact finding environmental mission to Armenia to investigate a variety of issues firsthand. During their visit, they reviewed operational procedures and regulations, conducted thorough discussions, held workshops, and presented lectures on various environmental topics. Computers as well as water testing and air pollution analysis instruments were given to the environmental authorities during this visit.


Workshops
The AESA Environmental Committee in conjunction with the AESA Energy and Transportation Committee organized one-day technical workshops to discuss and investigate different environmental, energy and transportation issues related to Armenia. Prominent specialists from Armenia were invited to participate at these workshops.


Blood Lead Level Study in Armenia

The lead assessment project is one of the major efforts by the EC. The goal of this project is to increase awareness and to minimize the incidence of lead contamination by educating the Armenian community about the hazards of lead. A study was sponsored by AESA to conduct analysis and quantify lead exposures, identify industries and circumstances associated with lead hazards, and define specific jobs that are characterized by excessive exposures and increased risk of lead poisoning for the workers. The AESA EC in conjunction with Dr. Emil A. Babayan, MD, PhD, is conducting research to assess lead exposure within the Republic of Armenia. Dr. Babayan is the Director of Toxicology Research at the Institute for General Hygiene and Occupational Diseases in Yerevan and also the Chief Preventive Toxicologist for the Armenian Ministry of Health.

An investigative visit to Armenia in September 1996 assessed worker exposure to lead at the Armenian Electric Light Plant and two printing factories in Yerevan. The investigation also included a study of lead exposure in children residing in the town of Biureghavan, a community that is dominated by a factory using large amounts of lead in the production of crystal glass.

Blood samples taken from workers and dust wipe samples from floors, machinery surfaces, and shoes were obtained at the Electric Light Plant. The results were alarming. Observation at the factory suggested that a variety of unsafe practices existed, such as unmanaged waste, potentially hazardous substance releases, lack of respiratory protection, as well as inadequate housekeeping and dust suppression measures. All of these factors resulted in very high levels of lead dust within the factory. Children who lived nearby or whose parents worked in the crystal glass factory were tested for lead exposure. The findings concluded that the average blood lead level for children in Biureghavan was very high.

For more details visit Archives and click on reports.

 

Water Quality in the Republic of Armenia

The Environmental Committee conducted a study with to evaluate the levels of contaminants found in tap water in Armenia and compare the results with the water quality in the US. The study was published in Water Environment & Technology, Vol 4, no 1, 1992, pp 64-67.

For more details visit Archives and click on reports.

 

 



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