0748 GMT March 25, 2019
Iran is among the first victims of climate change, said vice president and head of the Department of Environment (DoE).
Issa Kalantari said in a meeting with UN Resident Coordinator in Iran Ugochi Daniels that based on Paris climate change agreement, global warming should be limited to 1.5°C by 2020, IRNA reported.
“Iran’s average temperature increased by 1.5°C during the past 15 years while precipitation declined by 27 percent in the past 20 years,” he said.
The official added that about 25 percent of total global rainfall occur in Iran, while evaporation here is twice the world average.
He said water shortage is among the main dilemmas faced by the country, putting a large part of the Iran’s wildlife under threat.
Referring to the dust pollution in the southern part of the country, he said mismanagement of financial resources and climate change are behind the problem.
“Iran faces air pollution caused by inversion in the winter and ozone and carbon pollutants in the summer,” he said.
The vice president said that Iranian government is expected to invest $2 billion to $3 billion in the field of environment protection, he said, underlining that DoE is only in charge of policymaking while executive organizations fund environmental programs.
“US pressure has led to Afghanistan’s refusal to grant Iran’s water right in Hamun Lake, which has led to a crisis in Sistan Desert and created many health and economic problems for the population.
“This is while Iran has hosted at least 2.5 million Afghans for several decades and all the refugees enjoyed the rights similar to those extended to the Iranians,” he said.
Kalantari said Iran’s Foreign Ministry has followed up the issue for the past three years and urged the UN to get involved.
Daniels expressed delight over her presence in Iran and said poverty alleviation, public welfare, clean environment and sustainable development are the objectives which the UN help to realize in all countries.
She said despite the environmental problems faced by Iran, the country has the capacity to share its experience in the field with other countries.
At the end of the meeting the two sides underlined the need to cooperate in the environment sector and related fields.