Friday, March 15, 2013

UN Habitat Award

The Environment Committee in Tehran's City Council provides an opportunity to promote environmental standards for a city of over 8.5 million inhabitants, a city known for its congested traffic and as the economic and political hub of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
This committee which held over 180 meetings during the past 5.5 years,  also presides over the activity of more than 25 subcommittees in diverse areas related to urban environment. In addition, during   hundreds of visits to districts and local communities in Tehran, we evaluated the conditions and status of the living environment. The environment committee endeavors to set a standard for inter-sectoral coordination and collaboration among the major stakeholders, including municipal, government, NGO and private sector as well as local communities benefiting from the enhancement of environmental standards.
During this period we have undertaken policy-making, coordination and social mobilization strategies, in addition to the oversight of all urban activities.
A vast spectrum of issues ranging from air quality, to water and waste water management, green areas,civil society roles, waste management, national parks and precious ecosystems adjacent to Tehran, noise pollution , electromagnetic radiation, food safety and many other important issues  are tackled in the committee.
One of the most important bills  adopted in 2007 was the State of the Environment (SOE) Report for Tehran. On the basis of the national experience we had in the Iranian Department of the Environment, and the preparation and publication of two National SOE reports (2004,2005), we adopted a bill to obligate the Municipality to produce an annual SOE for Tehran.
The first city SOE report was produced on the basis of our national framework and the UNEP model .  The second report is  recently finalized and will be shortly available.
There was an international ceremony in Tehran on Wednesday, which I could not attend due to previous engagements at the University. The United Nations Human Settlements Programme UN-Habitat  acknowledged the preparation of this report under the jurisdiction of the Tehran City Council, as a Good Practice and applauded its impact in improving the living environment. The letter is signed by Ms Wandia Seaforth the Chief of the UN Habitat Best Practices Program.
We have to applaud the efforts of all our partners, experts and personnel in the municipality who made this report possible.
This photo of Tehran was taken by a Canadian astronaut- Chris Hadfield 

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