It is snowing now for several hours in Tehran. I was caught in a 3hr traffic jam coming home from the City Council. The streets are all covered with snow and moving towards the northern parts of the city becomes difficult. We had an important session today in the plenary on air pollution abatement programs and an extraordinary session in the Environment Committee on the technical inspection procedures. Unfortunately, the government apparatus is not performing properly regarding the comprehensive air pollution abatement plan which they should implement. We discussed ways that the Council could assist in promoting the programs.
This was what you would call a very busy week for me. The week began with the Baran Conference on Petroleum, Development and Democracy. I was invited to moderate the first session in the morning. The speeches delivered were very interesting in terms of the relationship between the levels of democracy and the state of economy particularly in petroleum based economies. Some of them pointed out that governments with oil revenue based economies are not accountable to their people like tax based economies. Listening to what most of the economists and sociologists had to say , one could conclude that in addition to the great contribution that petroleum has had to the economy of our country and its significant role in the advancement of national development programs , oil revenues have also served as obstacles or restraints for the democratic processes of the country.
I had a lengthly interview with the Japanese NHK television network in the afternoon that day. They are producing a comprehensive report on the third decade of the Islamic Revolution.