18 Provinces Low on Rainfall, Drought Feared

18 Provinces Low on Rainfall, Drought Feared18 Provinces Low on Rainfall, Drought Feared

Eighteen provinces in Iran are facing critical shortage of rainfall, marking a 20 percent decrease compared to the previous statistical period, said director Iran Meteorological Organization (IMO).

Davoud Parhizkar warned that Tehran, Alborz, Qom, Semnan, Razavi Khorasan, North Khorasan, Isfahan, Yazd and parts of South Khorasan and Golestan provinces are under the risk of drought, IRNA reported.

"Markazi Province has recorded the least and Caspian Sea coast and parts of south east and south west of Iran have enjoyed the highest rainfall," he pointed out. "Rainfall in Bushehr Province, in particular, has been 28 % above the average, whereas rainfall in Razavi Khorasan Province is recorded at 25.3 % below average, suffering a 19.2 % decline from the same time last year."

Iran is dry land with agricultural and hydrological droughts having been common phenomena in the country for long, according to Parhizkar. Weather forecasts for the next three months suggest relatively mild rainfall while overall temperature is expected to be above average.

He cited pollution as the next predicament of big cities. "High quality petroleum helps alleviate pollution, but we have yet to breathe clean air in big cities. We're trying to increase the amount of rainfall by 10 to 15 % through cloud seeding."

"Haze is another serious matter that Khouzestan, Ilam, Kermanshah, Tehran and Alborz provinces struggle to deal with," Parhizkar recalled. Haze or smog, is an atmospheric phenomenon where dust, smoke and other dry particles obscure the clarity of the sky. According to Parhizkar, haze flows in the country mostly from Iraq and Syria.