(Persia Digest) – An environmentalist in Iran believes: “Not paying attention to the water crisis in Iran can lead to social unrests and break up of infrastructures.”
On Friday, the opponents of transferring water from Isfahan to Yazd cut off the pipes in this project for the 24th time. The water crisis and persisting drought in Iran in recent years is showing itself as unrests in some regions. The crisis is so serious that Israeli PM Netanyahu tried to exploit this politically by publishing a propaganda video.
Environmentalist, Dr Esmaeil Kahrom, told Persia Digest (PD): “Iran has always had a water problem. The median annual rainfall here is 240mm, which is one-third of the global median. The country has suffered a 12-year long drought with half this amount of rainfall.”
He continued: “In fact, there is no proper water management in this country. Annually, 440BN cubic meters of water is used across Iran, of which 30BN cubic meters is evaporated. By building dams and creating lakes, larger water surfaces are exposed, evaporating at a faster rate than water running in rivers. Of the 90BN cubic meters of water consumed, 92 percent is spent on agriculture, 5 percent on industry, and the rest on drinking water.”
This expert on water and the environment commented on solutions by saying: “Iran is still using flood irrigation in agriculture while the world has moved towards micro-irrigation. The solution is to change our irrigation methods in agriculture. But given that major national resources are spent on other issues, there is no money left for this."
Speaking about the impacts of water shortages in Iran, Kahrom said: “This can lead to social unrests. A farmer can have peace of mind when he is working on his land. But now, we can see that out of the 240 thousand people living around the Hamoun marshland not one remains there; because land has no value without water. The farmer who worked on his palm groves in the south and had exports to Europe is now a laborer in Mazandaran Province in the north. People like these are certainly not happy and peaceful. Thus, we will be faced with a society ready to explode.”
He stressed: “The water crisis plays a direct part in social unrests. If this is not managed, it can damage the infrastructures of society.”
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