Construction of the Kaps Dam and Reservoir at the Akhouryan River near Gyumri was started, but not completed, in the 1980s. The Kaps Reservoir with a total storage capacity of 90 Mm³ and 90 m of maximum dam height (rockfill/earthfill with clay core) was intended to irrigate 33,096 ha in total. As a result the current agricultural production, mainly rainfed agriculture and livestock breeding, has remained far below its potential. In addition, the old pumping stations, partially out of operation, are highly energy consuming.
This feasibility study elaborated different options on the degree of enlargement of Kaps Dam and Reservoir including the study of the conveyance system and the study of a pressurized irrigation system introducing water saving (sprinkler and drip) technologies. This also included assessment of socio-economic, agricultural production, institutional, environmental, social, and climate change issues as well as a financial and economic evaluation of all options of the project. For various options of different dam sizes, ecological flows and extension of irrigation areas, crop water demand, water availability, reservoir levels and reservoir outflows have been simulated.
Furthermore, consulting services included the preparation of a management plan for the Akhouryan River Basin.
Update of the Feasibility Study “IWRM/ Akhouryan River, Phase 1”:
- Analysis and processing of hydro-meteorological data;
- Development and operation of a water management model for the Akhouryan catchment area;
- Assessment of design flood, water availability, initial estimate of current / future water demand;
- Assessment of climate change impacts and risks, preliminary appraisal of environmental impacts;
- Assessment of land ownership/use right and need for land acquisition / resettlement;
- Assessment of legal framework, water rights, international treaties;
- Assessment of institutional / organisational framework & identification of stakeholders;
- Simulation and optimization of reservoir operation;
- Cost estimates of different variants (investment, operation & maintenance costs);
- Agro-socio-economic survey and focus group discussion with stakeholders;
- Analysis of current and projected agricultural production system;
- Overview analysis of agricultural sector at provincial and national level;
- Cost-benefit analysis including sensitivity analysis for each proposed option for dam construction;
- Recommendations for institutional development and concept of setting-up a WUA Federation;
- Analysis of possible project impacts (e.g. transboundary issues).
Feasibility Study for the Irrigation System:
- Socio-economic and market analysis; economic and financial analysis;
- Definition of design parameters;
- Investigation of possible extension areas (based on water demand/availability);
- Elaboration of adequate irrigation techniques;
- Preliminary design for main distribution system;
- Development of standard designs for minor distribution components;
- Cost estimates (investment, operational & maintenance costs) incl. alternative variants;
- Preparation of O&M plans;
- Costs-benefit analysis including sensitivity analysis for each irrigation scheme/dam construction option;
- Recommendation for institutional development, incl. training needs to WUAs and farmers.
Management Plan for the Akhouryan River Basin:
- Land use inventory & implication of changing land use;
- Inventory of pollution sources & assessment of ecosystem needs (aquatic / terrestrial);
- Assessment of water-related development scenarios & future water demand;
- Vulnerability to floods & extreme meteorological events;
- Identification of priority issues and short-/ long-term goals, incl. water allocation & water quality;
- Strategy, measures & action plan for achievement the goals, incl. cost estimates;
- Responsibility & time schedule for implementation, incl. monitoring / updating mechanism;
- Preparation of (draft) River Basin Management Plan.