Earlier this year BBC Monitoring produced a backgrounder on a topic the UN has been flagging up for some time. Titled “Iranian drought raises environmental alarm“, the backgrounder – a version of which was also published on the BBC Weather website – explains that:
“The ongoing drought in Iran has raised fears of an environmental disaster, with warnings that the impact to many parts of the country’s ecosystem could lead to severe consequences, such as population displacement and mass migration.
Years of low rainfall, rising temperatures, mismanagement and population growth have led others to warn of a security threat and sandstorms engulfing as much as “a quarter of Iran’s territory”.
“Drying lakes and rivers, declining groundwater resources, land subsidence, water contamination and rationing, agricultural losses, salt and sandstorms, and ecosystem damages are reaching alarming levels in Iran,” said the deputy energy minister for water resources planning, Hedayat Fahmi, in August last year.”
“In his remarks in a video clip posted on Facebook with Farsi subtitles, Netanyahu began by pouring and sipping a glass of water, detailing his plans to launch a Farsi website explaining how Iranian farmers can recycle their waste water. […]
“Now, Israel also has water challenges. We’ve developed cutting edge technologies to address them. Israel recycles nearly 90% of its waste water. That’s far more than any other country on earth,” he proclaimed.
“Israel has the know-how to prevent environmental catastrophe in Iran. I want to share this information with the people of Iran. Sadly, Iran bans Israelis from visiting, so we’ll have to get creative,” he continued.
“We will launch a Farsi website, with detailed plans on how Iranians can recycle their waste water. We will show how Iranian farmers can save their crops and feed their families,” the prime minister promised.”
“Iranian Energy Minister Reza Ardakanian blasted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for his video message on water shortage in Iran, stressing that the country does not need Israel’s technologies for water treatment.
“The prime minister of this regime (Israel) or any other person who claims to have the ability to manage water resources is aware that Iran is among the countries whose several-thousand-year record of water management has been recognized and we can be a source for other world regions in this regard and promote methods to cope with water shortage and optimum use of water,” Ardakanian told reporters at the end of a cabinet meeting in Tehran on Wednesday.”
Interestingly, the same BBC which considered the Iranian drought important enough to justify the compilation of a backgrounder only six months ago has not found the offer from a country that is one of the world’s leaders in water management technology worthy of a news report.