Every single one of Iran’s 31 provinces suffers from drought to some extent, according to the director of National Drought Warning and Monitoring Center.
Speaking to ISNA, Shahrokh Fateh added that Iran’s battle with drought should set alarm bells ringing.
“There is no way to remedy the problem in the short run. Regardless of how we go about it, tackling the problem will take years to bear results,” he said.
Drought is directly affected by lack of precipitation, high temperature and declining water reserves. Iran’s prolonged dry spell has taken a toll on the country’s groundwater levels to the extent that even if precipitation returns to normal levels, it will only help meet the country’s water demand.
“In other words, normal rainfall will not be able to replenish our depleting groundwater reserves,” Fateh said.
Reeling From Climate Change
Iran is feeling the effects of climate change despite the disinclination of officials to talk about the topic and the reluctance of Iranian media to cover related news.
According to Fateh, northwestern, western and southwestern provinces experienced higher temperatures than average during the Iranian month of Shahrivar (Aug. 23-Sept. 22).
Whereas most provinces had temperatures 0.5 to 1 degree Celsius above normal, the mercury in the embattled Khuzestan Province hit temperatures up to 2.5° C above average.
With an annual emission of 712 million tons of carbon dioxide, Iran is the world’s 11th largest emitter of the gas. As the world is gearing up for crunch climate talks in Paris later this year, Iranian officials have yet to present their climate action plan, which some sources claim has been in the works since October 2014.