Rouhani opens 1200-hectare greenbelt plan around Tehran

With the project opened, the greenbelt area around Tehran hit more than 40 thousand hectares.

The President also planted a sapling in north-eastern Tehran in a symbolic move to celebrate the national Arbor Day on March 6.

"I hope all people across the country will join in this important activity of planting trees, in order to preserve and promote the natural and social health of our society," the president said at the ceremony celebrating Arbor Day and Natural Resources Week.

He went on to add, "today, we need a healthy environment for our society's health and people's vitality, which largely depends on the planting of trees and preservation of pastures and forests.”

"Unfortunately, millions of meters of forests and pastures have been destroyed in the past years,” he lamented.

The president noted that Iran's per capita population with regard to forests and pastures is less than the world’s average calling for more efforts to eliminate these shortcomings.

Rouhani commended the Ministry of Agricultural, municipalities and, in particular, Tehran mayor, for their efforts to create a greenbelt around Tehran, adding "the implementation of this project is of great importance and is very effective in protecting the environment and preventing the undue expansion of Tehran.”

"Tehran municipality has allocated 1200 hectares of land to planting forest this year and we hope to plant even more trees next year,” he added.

The president noted: "The destruction of forests has a great impact on the environment and is a major contributor to air pollution and the dust, forest degradation and desertification".

The president stressed that planting trees could help with the dust pollution aggravating many provinces, adding "I invite all classes and people from various backgrounds and environmentalists to participate in planting trees and encourage other people to join this activity.”

The president further called on the Iranian people to protect the environment during Nowruz holidays and on their trips.

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