Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Aug. 3
By Demir Azizov- Trend:
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan recalled its position on the project of Rogun hydropower station construction in Tajikistan.
"On 22 July, Minister of Energy and Water Resources of Tajikistan Usmonali Usmonzoda stated that there are no official complaints from Uzbekistan on the results of evaluation of international exports on the Rogun project," the message said.
In this connection, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan states that the Uzbek side earlier stated its principle position at the meeting of the representatives of the Governments of Central Asia to discuss the draft report of the World Bank "Key issues for further consideration of proposed project Rogun hydropower station and issues of use of trans-boundary water resources", which was held in Almaty on July 14-18 2014.
The Uzbek Foreign Ministry published a full text of the statement of the head of the delegation of Uzbekistan at the meeting Rustam Azimov, in which he said that expertise of the project on construction of Rogun hydropower station doesn't meet commonly adopted international standards.
An Uzbek official said that conclusions of the consultants and panel of experts on Rogun hydropower station are absolutely unacceptable for Uzbekistan.
He said that the consultants and experts only focused its efforts to promote the project, ignoring interests of population and states, located in lower course of Amudarya.
At the meeting, Rustam Azimov said that Uzbekistan would never, under any circumstances, provide support for this project. Uzbekistan believes that the project poses a threat to the fragile ecological balance of the whole Central Asian region.
"We cannot accept that after three years of studies, consultants and experts failed to develop specific answers to the following vitally important questions concerning the project: exposure to man-made disasters related to geological conditions of the site, potential mudflows, salt dome, etc.; ensuring the rights of countries in the middle and lower reaches of the Amudarya to guaranteed volumes and regime of water flow, particularly, during vegetation season; environmental risks for the entire region; review of effective alternative approaches to resolving the winter power shortage problem of Tajikistan," said the message.
In accordance with the project, Rogun hydro power plant is a station on the Vakhsh River with the altitude (335 meters) rockfill dam from local materials. In case of completion of the project, this dam will become the tallest one in the world.
The design capacity of the plant is 3,600 megawatts, the average annual production - 13.1 billion kilowatt/hours of electricity. The dam must form a large Rogun reservoir with a total volume of over 13 cubic kilometers. The project has been criticized because of the location of the future hydroelectric power plant in the area of high seismic activity, landslides and debris flow processes as well as the presence of a tectonic fault filled with rock salt under the base of the dam. In addition, countries downstream of the Amu Darya - Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, fear reducing water runoff, which will make up to 500,000 hectares of land unsuitable for agricultural production and lead to the loss of sources of income and livelihood for about 1.5 million people.
Edited by CN