Urmia Lake: The Need for Water Diplomacy

Quoted from Water Diplomacy Aquapedia:

"The government of Islamic Republic of Iran established the Urmia Lake Restoration Program (ULRP) in 2013. This program is under auspices of the President and then has more power than of the former program initiated by DOE. After several meetings, this program produced a set of guidelines, including 19 potential solutions for the lake. One of these solutions was to rent the lands of the Zarrinehrud River (which provides roughly 40% of all inflow to the lake) from farmers who did not harvest during winter seasons of the preceding three years. However, this solution was rejected by members of the local parliament who claimed the plan would negatively impact employment and waste funding on farmers, who do not possess effective tools to invest. Another solution mentioned by the ULRP was reallocation of water among the lake's three neighboring provinces. When applied, however, this approach resulted in each province making greater demands, and ultimately claiming more water.

Consensus building among these stakeholders is vital to the survival of the lake. As the ULRP lacks the authority to enforce compliance among local provinces, agricultural and water ministries, and parliamentary units, the introduction of a -water parliament- is one solution in which all formal stakeholders can receive equitable consideration toward the development of a successful mandatory policy."

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