Ambassador Richard Mills Remarks at Solar Energy in Armenia IVLP Reception

Ambassador Richard Mills Remarks at Solar Energy in Armenia IVLP Reception

As prepared
May 25, 2017

Thank you all for joining me today.

This month, the U.S. Embassy has been drawing attention to the work we do to promote environmentalism, to partner with Armenians to safeguard their resources.  We’ve recorded podcasts at our American Corner with some of Armenia’s environmental experts.  USAID has opened new facilities to help recycle water.  Just yesterday a group of students from various universities came to the Embassy to discuss water scarcity and explore how diplomacy can help nations work together as our environmental issues cross borders.

And during this month of focus on the environment, we also hosted a successful business showcase that brought together American and Armenian leaders in the energy sector to network, explore investment opportunities, and share best practices.

That effort was matched by the study trip to the U.S. for Armenian government and business leaders that some of you in this room participated in.  Participants got to see first-hand some of the new technology, tools, and thinking being used to power American communities with solar energy.  Our goal was to have the participants better positioned to be change agents and to advocate for increased solar production here.

We Americans don’t see the world as a zero sum game and much prefer win-win situations.  I believe increasing renewable energy in Armenia is a win-win-win. Armenia wins by diversifying its energy sources, lessening its dependency on any one provider or energy source.  The U.S. wins by opening investment opportunities for U.S. businesses and deepening our trade relationship.  And the world wins by having more people use safer and more efficient energy sources, lessening the environmental threats from more traditional fuel sources.

So thank you all for your interest in the topic and your work in bringing renewable solar power to Armenia.  And I want to especially those who took part in our exchange program by presenting them with certificates of participation now.  So please join me: Hayk Badalyan, Gayane Kolyan, Armen Tumanyan, Gegham Kirakosyan, and Tigran Grigoryan.