Watershed management on 30m ha of land to be implemented

April 8, 2023 - 16:54

TEHRAN – Some 30 million hectares area of land across the country will undergo watershed management by the next two years, Mohammad-Hassan Nami, the head of the National Disaster Management Organization, has said.

So far, about 38 million hectares of the country's lands have undergone watershed management, and the same will be implemented on other 30 million hectares of land by the next two years, IRNA quoted Nami as saying.

Of the 64 natural hazards or man-made accidents such as floods, earthquakes, fires, land subsidence, landslides, droughts, frostbite, and dust storms that occur in the world, 46 have taken place in Iran, he highlighted.

The highest consumption of water is in the agriculture sector, followed by the industry sector, he said, adding that special measures should be taken in these sectors to reduce consumption.

“For example, in the agriculture sector, we should see a change in the cultivation pattern towards hydroponic cultivation, because this type of cultivation will increase the output by at least 5 to 7 folds and has more nutritional health.”

A total of 210 projects of natural resources and watershed management were inaugurated across the country in the Iranian calendar year 1400 (March 2021-March 2022), Masoud Mansour, the head of the Forests, Rangelands, and Watershed Management Organization has announced.

“A sum of 3.9 trillion rials (nearly $7.5 million) has been spent on these projects,” ILNA quoted Mansour as saying.

These projects included watershed management, aquifer, flood control, desertification, forest development, rangeland rehabilitation, conservation, and support projects aimed at conserving water and soil, protecting vegetation, preventing erosion, and reducing drought and nutrition damage, he explained.

The national budget bill for the past Iranian calendar year 1401 (March 2022-March 2023) allocated 16 trillion rials (about $32 million) for watershed management, which was nearly fourfold the budget for its preceding year.

With the implementation of watershed management projects, 9 tons per hectare of water erosion has been reduced annually, and in mountainous areas, 570 cubic meters of water have been extracted per hectare.

Moreover, some 1000 cubic meters of water per hectare is stored in underground aquifers and prevent the entry of 4 cubic meters of sediment behind the dams.


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