At COP26, attention turns to Iran’s environmental issues

As the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) reached its final day, discussions about the growing number of storms, floods and wildfires around the world featured prominently in the debate. agenda. The impacts of climate change are devastating, affecting the lives of tens of millions of people every year.

There are several advances in tackling climate change that lead to cleaner air and the restoration of nature, but it is a slow process. If the countries of the world join forces to help each other, the sooner we can see bigger improvements.

Iran is a disaster prone country due to both its geological and climatic situation, facing both floods and drought. The variation of these pressures reflects the great diversity of the climatic and geophysical zones of the country.

Massive deforestation, deterioration of ecosystems and rapid desertification of agricultural land are putting significant pressure on the Iranian environment. Disaster planning is greatly needed to overcome the impacts of natural disasters in the country, as well as a reduction in actions causing deforestation and desertification. An important task is to provide education and training to all citizens to help them better respond to natural disasters. As Iran is prone to relatively frequent earthquakes, there is a need to improve the research and monitoring of these events to enable better earthquake forecasting technology, as well as to improve and implement earthquake-resistant building regulations throughout the country.

Population density and its distribution is a major stressor with transport, mainly in urban areas, as well as issues such as age of vehicles, number and fuel consumption.

With so many people crowded into cities, there is a great strain on resources. The effects of such urbanization include poor air quality, light pollution, noise, encroachment on green spaces and excessive pressure on waste disposal and recycling. The worse the conditions, it can lead to serious public health and sanitation problems. With the majority of Iran’s landmass mountainous and environmental problems causing rapid desertification, remaining arable land is scarce at best, so cities have seen a massive influx of people migrating to them.

Despite promises of reform, human rights violations are still “rife” in Iran. Among the targeted groups are environmental activists, with more than 60 activists and researchers arrested in 2018.

Widespread unrest across Iran has built up in recent years, with environmental issues facing citizens as one of the root causes, the other issues being severe economic decline and dominance of the regime as a whole.

The most serious environmental problem facing Iran today is drought. However, this is not a natural situation. The severe water shortage was created by the Iranian government due to plans to build dams by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), as well as the regime’s institutionalized corruption and mismanagement of water resources. already rare.

This crisis has led to the abandonment of thousands of villages as the land becomes unsustainable. Predictions suggest that millions of people will eventually be displaced as the problems worsen.

Natural climate variability, climate change, droughts and economic sanctions have had undeniable impacts on Iran’s environment and its water resources. Yet Iran’s environmental and water problems are mostly man-made, the product of decades of absolutely poor management coupled with a lack of forethought, uncoordinated planning and a misperception of development.


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