People, Environment

Saplings for Iraq

Saplings  for Iraq  Saplings  for Iraq

In an effort to help Iraq combat dust storms and curb its impact on Iran, the provincial office of the Forests, Range and Watershed Management Organization is planning to export a million saplings to the neighboring country in the next Iranian year (starts March 20). Speaking to Mehr News Agency, Reza Ahmadi, head of the organization, said Ilam has the capacity to produce 12 million saplings a year. Pointing to the Rouhani administration’s declared policy to do more for environmental protection, the official said the government had helped in the reforestation of 5,300 hectares of land in the province. Western and southwestern regions of Iran have been grappling with dust storms for years. Experts are of the opinion that most of the sources of dust storms, which have become more frequent and intense recently, are located in Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Syria.  Iranian officials have called for an international effort to tackle the problem, but only Iraq has shown some interest in working toward that goal. The Saudis have no diplomatic ties with Tehran and even when they had the House of Saud apparently had no interest in environmental cooperation.