Intl. Conf. on Combating Sand, Dust Storms kicks off in Tehran

TEHRAN, Jul. 03 (MNA) – Hosted by Department of Environment and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the International Conference on Combating Sand and Dust Storms kicked off in Tehran on Monday.

The event is being held with the cooperation of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat, UN Environment and the UN Development Programme, in collaboration with other relevant UN entities.

International participants will include ministers, senior officials, country experts, international resource persons and policy makers from all regions as well as experts from regional and international organizations and UN entities.

The themes to be addressed at the International Conference will include the following:

  • Overview of global and regional trends of sand and dust storms combined with a Ministerial dialogue;
  • Social, economic and environmental impact of sand and dust storms and their costs;
  • Observation, monitoring, prediction and early warning systems;
  • Policy options, technology innovation and investment opportunities, considering cross-sectoral integrated approaches;
  • Global, regional and cross-sectoral cooperation; and
  • Conclusion and way forward.

According to the concept note of UN Environment and the Development Programme, there has been a growing awareness of the global phenomenon of Sand and Dust Storms (SDS) and their global, regional, transboundary and multi-faceted impacts on the environment, climate, health, livelihoods, agriculture and socio-economic well-being of societies in the past decades. The UN system has already started addressing this problem from various perspectives, including the 15th World Meteorological Congress in 2007 which launched the Sand and Dust Storm Warning Advisory and Assessment System (SDSWAS) with its global Steering Committee, establishment of Barcelona Dust Forecast Center in 2014 by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), whose operations generate and distribute forecasts for North Africa, the Middle East and Europe, managing the risks of extreme events and disaster to advance climate change adaptation in 2012 Global Assessment of Sand and Dust Storms in 2016, etc.


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