Ecological crisis in Iran deepens under the Islamic Republic Regime

According to the experiences gained in the nuclear and ecological sciences, radioactive and nuclear substances are extremely dangerous material to handle and require special safety and control procedures. This is due to multiple fission properties of uranium resulting in subsequent radiations (Alpha and Beta particles plus Gamma rays) during the enrichment process including extremely high levels of toxicity plus the migration and durability of its waste on humans and the environment in comparison with other environmentally controlled industrial wastes.   

 In order to grasp a better understanding of the serious dangers of natural radioactive by-products of uranium and other nuclear fuel substances, we could refer to research carried out by scientists in the advanced western countries in the aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing and the Chernobil nuclear disaster.

Research shows that even a mere gram of enriched uranium found in the natural environment, could take up to four million years to reduce its contamination and radiation to nil or even half its original value. The side effects of such substances penetrating and contaminating our natural habitat manifest itself in deformities and malignant forms of cancer. Therefore, it would be unimaginable to think how long masses of nuclear waste in their thousands or millions of unit would take, together with the cascaded levels of pollution and contamination of the environment, to naturally degrade to half life or completely reduce to naught.

 Surely, catastrophes such as the spread of radioactive material in the environment and in our natural habitat could potentially be caused by human error and improper implementation of specially required health and safety procedures. In addition, destruction of nuclear power plants in the event of any natural disasters such as tremors and last but not least by other means of destruction such as air raids on such plants during a conflict are all but possible. In fact the latter is the main concern of the international community about the dangers of the nuclear energy and its global impact.

This becomes even more concerning when a country such as Iran which is ruled by the medieval and war waging Islamists, when armed with nuclear and weapons of mass destruction, could potentially become a serious threat to the safety and the integrity of the natural and ecological resources in the region and ultimately, the world’s peace and security.

 Today, it’s a proven fact that until recently the Islamic Republic of Iran has been concealing its nuclear activities for the past two decades and has been engaged in the enrichment of Uranium in secret and ignoring the consequences of any leakage and contamination of the environment during this time.

 The destruction of the ecological resources and the plundering of the oil and gas resources, reserves and revenues by the ruling clergy and the consequences of wasting such resources would hinder the task of the future generations of Iran in order to build a modern Iranian society.

 According to the present evidences and views of the analysts reflected in the domestic and overseas media, at present Iran faces the following serious environmental challenges under the Islamic Republic rule:

 A-Impaired civic and human environmental conditions

Air pollution caused by vehicles, small traditional local industries and workshops, factories and other every day human life activities. (According to the state released statistics, due to the Green House effect and levels of CO2 emissions in Tehran and other large cities, on average, there has been, for example in Tehran, an increase of 1.5 degrees Celsius in the temperature within the past 2 decades. Shorter and hotter seasons of summer have been recorded during this period.

 Water pollution and the shortage of it, leading to constant rationing of drinking water in the cities.

 Excessive sound pollution.

 Shortage of appropriate and adequate civil facilities in line with the abnormal increase in the population and human congestion in the cities.

 Immethodical expansion of the cities and unscientific building designs ignoring the safety standards against tremors, bearing in mind that 24 large cities in

Iran, particularly Tehran with a population of 15 million lie on active geologic fault zones posing a constant serious threat at any time.

 Shortage and high costs of accommodation forcing the population into the city fringes, particularly in

Tehran.

 The lack of an adequate drainage and sewage system and wasting the rain water or other surface running water.

 The lack of a proper waste disposal policy and adequate segregation and recycling of the civic waste (Domestic, Industrial, constructional and medical).

 The lack of a programme for renovating and refurbishing the drinking water purification plants and the sewage system.

      Serious shortage of green space (Less than 1.5 Square meters per person in Tehran) and the lack of adequate recreational and sporting facilities, particularly for women and the youth.

  Unstable socio-economic and political conditions which have lead to massive unemployment or mendacious jobs, mass poverty (According to the regime’s own statistics, more than 80% of the population live under the poverty line), increase in crime and disrespect for others’ property, criminal offences, bribery, increase in the use of narcotic substances, AIDS, psychological and physical disorders including infectious diseases such as Cholera are all to mention but a few which continue to descend the social human and personal values manifesting themselves in other social problems such as children, particularly the girls, having to leave their homes prematurely, adding to the number of homeless children, prostitution and other socio-cultural perversions amongst the Iranian society.

 B-  Impaired environ-industrial conditions

    Severe air pollution and smug caused by excessive and irresponsible use of industrial fuel at and around production processing plants.

         Water pollution and the shortage of it and shortage of electrical power stations needed for industrial purposes.

        Unhygienic soil and earth pollution as a result of lack of proper solid and fluid waste disposal control system.

   Various pollutions caused by improper placement of industrial and manufacturing centres.

 The use of non-standard and unapproved outdated machinery in different sectors of the State owned, semi-private and private industries.

 The lack of essential and scientific disposal facilities for toxic and dangerous material waste generated by various industries including the hospitals.

  Inefficient extraction and use of the natural resources and energy for the production of various industrial products.

 Shortage of adequate public transportation services and suitable roads and the lack of a systematic traffic control.

 Environmental mismanagement and inefficient deployment of traditional means and methods of labour.

 Shortage of labour and trained personnel (Technicians and specialists), particularly in the field of environmental pollution control and Health and Safety at places of work.

 The long term effects of the environ-industrial related pollution on the humans and the socio-economic consequences of it.

 C-        Impaired natural and rural areas environments

 Rural population growth: Today, the rural population of Iran is in excess of 40% who are believed to be migrating into the cities in growing numbers.

 Lack of appropriate and necessary facilities to engage in agricultural, cattle breeding and forestry activities.

 Migration from the rural areas as a result of poor socio-economic conditions, in particular, migration of the peasants inhabiting in desert fringes as a result of desert expansion due to the destruction of the green life surrounding these areas.

 Destruction of the forests due to fire and frequent military manoeuvres in the perimeter of the forests and national parks.

 Excessive, frequent and spurious flood water flow as a result of obliteration of the forests and the destruction of the green zones.

 Destruction of the agricultural areas and farms due to the shortage of adequate cattle breeding facilities and grazing land.

Deterioration of the soil due to alkalization and landslips.

 Immethodical and uncontrolled use of pesticides, chemical and animal fertilisers in the agricultural lands and landscapes.

 Shortage of water and other utilities needed for irrigation.

 Inadequate sanitary facilities, shortage of medicine, medical care and nourishment.

 High levels of illiteracy, shortage of teachers and schooling to promote literacy and training facilities to improve agricultural and cattle breeding as well as forest protection techniques.

 Destruction of reservoirs, diversion of the streams and the rivers and disturbing the natural conditions of the Biotops for the purposes of erecting buildings and constructing roads by the profiteering companies, state men and other elements connected with the regime.

 Lack of proper care for hunting grounds, disrespect for protected natural resources, including National forests and parks and the deterioration of the wild life and other rare and hard to find plantations. 

D-   Specific Impairment of civic, industrial and natural environment

Chronic pollution of the hidden waste and derelict cemeteries in the cities such as the abandoned and derelict cemetery of “Abali” in the south east of Tehran.

 Abandoned and derelict industrial units as well as those belonging to the private sector, particularly chemical and biological plants to mention but a few.

 Abandoned and evacuated garrisons and military stations.

 Accumulation of the scrap material inherited during the war and the presence of millions of live landmines and ammunition still buried in populated lands.

 Lack of credible technical and safety standards, legal, scientific and practical trained personnel with necessary experience to manage the nuclear energy plants and the atomic waste.

 Various dangerous wastes generated in the processes of manufacturing and the maintenance of military weapons including chemical and biological wastes during the construction phases of nuclear power stations in Boushehr, Isfahan, Natanz and Arak.

 Chemicalpollution and the rising of the surface level of the

Caspian Sea.

 Pollution of the Persian Gulf caused by industrial waste, oil spillage by the tankers and the consequential pollution caused by recent wars in the region.

 Gradual precipitation and drying up of the rivers.

 Destruction of the International reservoirs and the degeneration of the marine life and other sources of marine food and protein.

 The use of carcinogenic Asbestos material in building construction projects and the use of asbestos pipes in the drinking water supply networks in the cities.

 Radioactive pollution of the regions of “Sabalan” Mountains as a result of excavation and extraction of Uranium carried out by the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran and other foreign subcontractors which has resulted in an increase in the number of people diagnosed with Leukaemia and cancer of the abdomen (In the cities and surrounding villages of Ardabil, Sarab and Meshkin Shahr).

 Radioactive pollution of river “

Aras the waterfalls in the Caspian Sea region and other populated areas of the Northern provinces.

 Spread of Avian Influenza in

Tehran and other Northern provinces including Azerbaijan and tens of other worrying cases which would take many years to contain and to bring under control. Such dangerous and comprehensive impairments would take many years to deal with and cost billions of Dollars to overcome.

 From what has been said so far, we can only draw the conclusion that under the Islamic Republic’s Regime, the ecological damage to the environment has already exceeded the critical levels to the point that it leaves no room to take on any further risks with Atomic projects and its associated dangers such as radioactive leaks, etc.

This would necessarily mean that we ought to be looking for potentially available renewable forms of energy which exist in numerous forms in Iran.  

 Those elements or organisations who do not take the already catastrophic ecological damages to the environment under the rule of the Islamic Republic seriously, and consciously or naively consider the enrichment of Uranium by the Islamic Republic to be a “justified right” of the Iranian Nation (i.e. sharing the same aspirations as the regime’s), ought to know that presently, along with the world economy transition towards the globalisation of the capitalist economy, Iran is considered as one of the world’s prime sources of natural and ecological wealth.

 Iran has massive sources of hydrocarbon and has the second largest natural underground gas reserves in the world. Natural gas, as an ecologically preferred type of Hydro Carbonic fuel, is in much demand by the current technologically advanced and other developing countries.

In addition, bearing in mind the immensity of the size of Iran and the natural diversities in different resources across its regions, plus its crucial and important geo-political situation, all are in favour of a nation to establish a free, modern and ecologically friendly Iran.   

 Undoubtedly, should

Iran be governed by a democratic and popular regime, as well as the efficient and sensible use of the revenues generated by the fossil fuel resources which would provide long term employment particularly amongst the women and its youth, would also invest in the use of other renewable energy sources in tandem. These include wind energy, solar power, geothermal energy and the use of techniques related to Hydrogen Fusion and many more.

With the help and the co-operation of many sympathetic scientists and experts in these fields as well as other conscientious political activists and liberty seeking forces of Iran every effort can be made to establish an sustainable and environmentally friendly Iran.

These types of safe energy have huge endemic sources and could also be exported to other parts of the world in vast volumes. Therefore, the claims made by the Islamic Republic of Iran over the need for nuclear energy for peaceful purposes have no foundation other than their desire to develop nuclear weapons!

 This becomes even more apparent when considering that due to its serious dangers on humans and the environment plus the need for heavy investments and gaining very little returns in comparison, Atomic energy programmes are nowadays considered as counter-productive around the globe and therefore, would not be either the correct or a forward thinking option in Iran.

 Already, some western countries such as Canada, Germany and others have formally decided to completely abandon the use of their nuclear power generators by the year 2020.