Green development not a “choice” but an “obligation”: industry minister

February 21, 2018

TEHRAN – The world is increasingly approaching toward low-carbon economy and the move toward green development is not a “choice” but an “obligation,” said Industry, Mining and Trade Minister Mohammad Shariatmadari.

The minister made the remarks on the ‘19th National Conference of Green Industries and Services’ held on Monday with the chief of the Department of Environment Isa Kalantari, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (the German Federal Enterprise for International Cooperation), also known as GIZ, representatives and selected green industries and units in attendance.

In order to achieve sustainable development, domestic industries should take environmental issue into account, Shariatmadari added.

Environmental conditions governing the industry sector are changing in a way that without planning for the environment, one cannot develop industries in the long run, he said, adding, “Overlooking the environment will definitely cause problems for the industry.”

Reducing the consumption of non-renewable energies, lowering the use of natural resources in industry, boosting the efficiency of natural resources, diminishing pollutants via implementing new technologies and moving toward smart production and distribution were among the measures which Shariatmadari called for pursuing in the country.

He went on to say that Iran’s CO2 emissions per capita is 66 percent above the global average and this is a major problem that needs to be resolved.

Elsewhere in his remarks, the minister highlighted that the establishment of wastewater treatment plants in industrial units have grown by 30 percent.

Environmental conditions governing the industry sector are changing in a way that without planning for the environment, one cannot develop industries in the long run, he said, adding, “Overlooking the environment will definitely cause problems for the industry.”

Appropriate location of industries

There are some principles which should be taken into account when deciding to locate an industry in a region, ISNA quoted the minister as saying.
Mines cannot be transferred to water-rich regions but industries which are related to mining such as steel industry can be moved to such regions, said Shariatmadari. “Unfortunately, due to the establishment of water-demanding industries in the central [arid] regions of the country, we have to transfer water from the Persian Gulf with considerable costs.”

Improper locating of industrial units in some regions of Iran have caused not only economic and environmental issues but also some political and social ones, added the minister.

Automotive industry

Touching on the standards of the automotive industry, the minister claimed that ‘100 percent’ of domestically produced cars meet euro 4 standards, although some 4 years ago, only 40 percent of them had achieved the standard. Also the number of cars which reach euro 5 standard is on the rise in a way that it has increased from 2,280 cars in [Iranian calendar] year 1390 (March 2011 – March 2012) to 19,120 cars today, he added. 

Kalantari, the chief of environment, for his part, touched on the fact that 80 percent of air pollution in metropolises is caused by vehicles and said, “As long as automotive and fuel industries are not converted to green industries, we won’t have clean air in metropolitan areas.”

He also hoped that the interaction between industry and environment would be in such a way that “We won’t be forced to shut down industrial units due to causing pollution.”

Green industries conference

The conference aims to acknowledge green industries and services, encourage their development and make use of their experience for other units, said Masoud Tajrishi, DOE's deputy director for human environment.

67 green industries and 22 green service producing unites were selected in this event based on criteria such as establishment of HSE units, monitoring real-time pollutants’ parameters, boosting the knowledge of employees and developing green spaces.

The cooperation of UNIDO and GIZ in this years’ conference made the criteria for selecting top green businesses stricter, Mehr reported.

Tehran Urban and Suburban Railway Operations Company was one of the four top green industrial units acknowledged in the event. 

MAH/MQ/MG
 

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