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Environment chief: MSC is a green industry

The vice-president and director of the Department of the Environment told an 8th general session of the Supreme Council of the Provinces that efforts should be made to praise green industries rather than wait for companies such as Mobarakeh Steel Company to be labeled as polluting so that the government can levy taxes on them for harming the environment.
Isa Kalantari further said, “We’d better hail the managing directors, personnel and owners of clean industries and encourage them to take efficient steps toward improving their environmental performance.”   
He said certain organizations and institutions should not be allowed to blame plants such as MSC for causing environment pollution simply to absorb financial resources and make up for their earning shortages.
He went on to say that Mobarakeh Steel Company has made substantial investment in efforts to upgrade its environmental conditions. “Mobarakeh Steel Company is a green industry thanks to its environmental achievements. Today, air, soil, water, flora and genetic resources are facing serious problems. We have fared poorly in protecting what is passed down to us. Due to our performance, nothing has remained of the natural resources we’ve held in trust.”   
Energy has been misused in the country, and this has wreaked havoc on the environment, he said, adding, “Over the years, we have tapped into new technologies and excessively harnessed the subterranean water. Fallen trees are transferred from the woods in the north. The fact is that overuse of natural resources has taken a heavy toll on the environment.”   
The environment chief said the environment is dealt heavy blows when technology is tapped in the absence of an intimate knowledge of how to use it. “Unsustainable policies adopted over the years have resulted in soil and water erosion. Undoubtedly, this cannot be blamed on the public. The environment is the prime victim of the policies taken as a result of limitations in the country.”
Kalantari also said, “In 1980 when the question of self-sufficiency in wheat production was brought up, the pastureland and fields were reclaimed for cultivation so that Iran could make its dream of self-sufficiency a reality. This gave rise to the degradation of soil and pasturelands, and pushed Iran to the top of the list of countries which were grappling with soil degradation.”   
According to annual reports, as much as 12 tons per hectare is subject to soil degradation in Iran on a yearly basis, he said, blaming the wrong policies of the past four decades for the decline in soil condition.
As for water shortage, the environment chief said, “People will cut their consumption if they know that the water crisis is real. Unfortunately, we deny or conceal this fact. If the current trend sustains, the country will face far worse conditions in the future as far as water resources are concerned.”
In conclusion, Kalantari stressed the importance of improving the consumption pattern and said that the country needs to slash its water consumption by between 40 and 50 billion cubic meters; otherwise, it will face dire consequences. “Water shortage has gripped the whole nation. That’s why we have to provide the public with sufficient information so that we can secure their assistance.”  

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