Baku, Azerbaijan, May 19
By Fatih Karimov - Trend:
There are more dams built in Iran than the country actually needs, Iranian Energy Minister Hamid Chitchian said.
Chitchian said Hamoun, Urmia, Gavkhouni, and Bakhtegan lakes are being dried up due to building large numbers of dams in recent years, Iran's Mehr news agency reported on May 19.
Water shortage has turned into a serious problem for the country, he said, adding that renewable water reserves have decreased from 130 billion cubic meters to 120 billion cubic meters.
"Dams in the country have a total storage capacity of 76 billion cubic meters, but the volume of water behind them is currently just 46 billion cubic meters."
On Nov. 17, Hamidrza Janbaz, advisor to Iran's energy minister, said water shortage has reached a critical level in Tabriz, Isfahan, Khuzestan, Qum, Mashhad and Hamadan provinces.
Currently a special programme is being worked out in order to solve the water shortage problem in the next three years, he added.
"A drought has been observed in the country for nearly 13 years. The demand for water increases with population growth," Janbaz said.
Iran is located in an arid zone and the country has repeatedly faced with drought in the past 40 years.
The drought of 1992-2002 caused a major blow to agriculture. There were quotas imposed for fresh water in several cities, including Tehran.