Developing Green Taxonomy in Armenia: New Project Launched2 min read
Yerevan, Armenia — On February 17, the World Bank Group, the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Armenia (RA), and the American University of Armenia (AUA) Acopian Center for the Environment launched the “Developing Green Taxonomy in Armenia” project, a year-long initiative aimed at creating a policy and legal basis for green investments in the country.
Green Taxonomy is a policy and regulatory framework that identifies what qualifies as a green and sustainable investment or spending. Adopting a green taxonomy is a key step toward establishing a sound system for identifying, selecting, and financing green and sustainable development projects in Armenia. Similar taxonomies are developed in many regions and countries worldwide, including China, the European Union, Georgia, Russia, U.K., and many Asian and Central Asian countries.
In her opening remarks, Armenia’s Deputy Minister of Economy Ani Ispiryan explained that the Ministry asked the World Bank to support the development of a national green and transition taxonomy over the coming year. She emphasized that this work will be conducted in cooperation with several government bodies, the Central Bank of Armenia, and business and civil society communities through a policy dialogue on transition to a green economy model, which is being heralded by the government’s GREEN (Growth Recovery to Empower, Equip and Nurture) Armenia platform.
Irina Ghaplanyan, senior climate change specialist at the World Bank, highlighted the potential benefits that the adoption of a green taxonomy can have for Armenia. “It will provide policymakers and economic agents with shared clear definitions of which economic activities and investments can be considered environmentally sustainable. This, in turn, will provide easier access to green and climate finance, scaling up investments aimed at furthering environmental, development, and social policy objectives of the country,” she noted.
A dedicated expert working group has been established to provide substantive input to this work. The group consists of representatives of government bodies, the Central Bank of Armenia, Yerevan municipality, as well as thematic and sectoral specialists. At the launch meeting, Alexander Martusevich, the World Bank consultant, briefed members of the expert working group on their specific charge and expected results.
The AUA Acopian Center for the Environment supports the development of a green taxonomy in Armenia by engaging the expert working group’s thematic and sectoral specialists, who will conduct relevant research and focus-group discussions with industry, academia, and civil society. The results will inform the final policy documents to be approved by the government. The Center will also work on developing capacity in Armenia on developing and implementing green taxonomies.
Nonna Babayan, project manager at the Acopian Center, will be leading the Center’s sectoral and thematic experts, some of whom are AUA faculty members and long-time research collaborators. “The priority sectors for the first iteration of Armenia’s Green Taxonomy will be agriculture and forestry, energy, water, land transport, mining, light industry, and IT/digitalization,” remarked Babayan, adding, “For each of these sectors, our sectoral and thematic experts will propose categories, criteria, and indicators to be included in Armenia’s Green Taxonomy. ”
The AUA Acopian Center for the Environment, a research center of the American University of Armenia (AUA), promotes the protection and restoration of the natural environment through research, education, and community outreach. The AUA Acopian Center’s focus areas include sustainable natural resource management, biodiversity protection and conservation, greening the built environment, sustainable energy, as well as information technology and the environment. Visit http://ace.aua.am.