Iran, Netherlands seek increased environmental co-op 

December 13, 2017

TEHRAN – Iran’s Department of Environment chief Isa Kalantari held a meeting in Tehran on Monday with Dutch ambassador Susanna Terstal, discussing ways to boost environmental cooperation. 

Iran faces some environmental challenges – namely water shortage, air pollution and sand and dust storms – which need to be tackled through national and international measures.

“The importance of water and soil resources call for greater cooperation in sharing related knowledge and experience in order to preserve them,” DOE official website quoted Kalantari as saying.

“Population growth has resulted in an increasing need for food, consequently putting more pressure on water and soil resources. So planning for preservation of these resources along with providing global food security has grave importance and Iran is eager to use the experiences of successful countries in this regard”.

Iran is interested in using the practical experiences and strategies of European countries, especially the Netherlands, for combating air pollution, Kalantari highlighted.

After the appointment of an Iranian official as the vice president for UN Environment Assembly on behalf of Asia-Pacific group, Iran is increasingly eager to expand regional and international environmental cooperation, especially on sand and dust storms, deputy environment chief Kaveh Madani said.

The Iranian officials also expressed their interest on the issue of green businesses and hoped for more collaboration especially on the issue of e-waste management.

The Dutch ambassador, for her part, touched upon the two countries’ long history of cooperation and added “[since] climate change and temperature rise affects all countries, the efficient management of water and soil resources grow in special importance and it can be a major topic for expansion of environmental cooperation among nations”.

E-waste management, effective management of water and soil resources, combating sand and dust storms, development of green businesses and expansion of trainings, researches and scientific activities are among the issues that the Netherlands seeks cooperation with Iran, Terstal noted.

Highlighting the importance of educating kids as the future decision makers and managers, she emphasized on the role of women in this regard saying “it has grave importance to provide environmental education for women since they have a fundamental role in nurturing the future generation”.

Increasing the costs of using personal cars through various measures, quantitative and qualitative development of public transportation, fostering the culture of using bicycles – especially e-bikes – and establishing cycling routes and parking in the cities are among the major actions of the Netherlands to combat air pollution, the ambassador said.

Terstal invited Iran’s environment officials to visit her country, to acquaint with its various environmental measures and take major steps toward expansion of relations between the two nations.

MAH/MQ/MG

Photo: Dutch ambassador Susanna Terstal (L), Environment chief Isa Kalantari (C), and Kaveh Madani

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