People, Environment

Isfahan Anti-Pollution Scheme Extended

Isfahan Anti-Pollution Scheme ExtendedIsfahan Anti-Pollution Scheme Extended

Isfahan officials are set to extend for another year the pollution-hit city’s scheme to combat smog due to the plan’s slow progress.

“We’ve only managed to implement 60% of the measures outlined in the plan,” said Isfahan Governor Rasoul Zargarpour.

According to schedule, the plan should have been fully implemented by the end of the current Iranian year (ends March 19), Mehr News Agency reported.

Even though Isfahan is behind schedule, it is reportedly the most successful of all of Iran’s eight polluted metropolises when it comes to curbing air pollution, according to Massoumeh Ebtekar, the head of the Department of Environment.

The scheme, officially known as the Comprehensive Plan to Reduce Air Pollution, includes measures such as distribution of Euro-4 gasoline, closure of polluting power plants, expanding public transportation and imposition of vehicle restriction zones in the country’s top tourist destination.

“Isfahan was Iran’s most polluted city barley two years ago,” Zargarpour said, adding that the scheme has been “very effective” in curbing the pollution plight.

As the country’s most industrialized city, Isfahan should emerge as a center for green industries and “that is only possible with the help of advanced technology.”

The official said the province’s environmental problems did not occur overnight but were years in the making, implying that it would take years to fix the air and noise pollution.

“We need to stop the blame game because it has never solved anything,” Zargarpour said, adding that environmental protection has become a priority for his office.

Isfahan’s air quality index was 136 on Wednesday morning — in the orange zone based on World Health Organization standards.

Meteorologist forecast that the air quality will remain poor until Friday.

Environmental officials, including the head of the provincial office of the DOE, Hamid Zahrabi, have attributed Isfahan’s endless struggle with air pollution to the city’s growing population and the extremely dense concentration of industries across the metropolis.