Leadership Council for Human Rights

~ Feet in the mud, head in the sky ~

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Ancient forests in danger in Iran due to highway construction

Construction that began eleven years ago on a highway between Tehran and resorts on Iran’s northern Caspian coast is threatening one of the last remaining woodland areas in the country, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported Tuesday. The highway, which cuts the traveling time from four or five hours to one and a half hours, is likely to be used by 4 million drivers each year.

According to a deputy head of Iran’s Environment Organization, only one of four sections complies with environmental-protection norms. Additionally, some areas of the highway already are subject to land price inflation and real estate speculation.

The forests in danger contain deciduous trees so ancient that they are deemed ancestors of forests in Europe. Iran has already seen the area of forests south of the Caspian sea decrease by half, and according to environmentalist Ismail Kahroum, “probably there will [be] nothing left…in the next 30-35 years. These forests produce water and air for us.”

For the full article, click here.


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