August 16, 2017
On August 15, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) signed a Record of Discussions with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran for the Project on Capacity Development for Participatory Forest and Rangeland Management in Upper Karoon Basin, a technical cooperation project.
The project will strengthen the framework for integrated watershed management * being furthered by the Government of Iran, enhance the watershed management system with resident participation, and provide technical support to improve the livelihoods of local residents in the Karoon River Basin in southwest Iran with the aim of watershed conservation.
Spreading 70,000 square kilometers in 10 provinces, the Karoon River has the largest drainage area of any river in Iran, and the upper basin is traditionally used for sheep and goat ranging as a means for making a living. In recent years, illegal logging and overgrazing in the upper basin has reduced the forest and grassland cover, resulting in a reduced water storage capacity. This is one of main causes of soil erosion, disasters such as mudflows and landslides, and significant sedimentation in dam reservoirs, affecting the lives of basin residents.
From 2000 to 2002, JICA carried out a development study titled “the Karoon River Watershed Management Plan” and formulated a watershed management master plan for the upper basin of the Karoon River. Based on the master plan, JICA subsequently carried out the Participatory Forest and Rangeland Management Project in Chaharmahal-va-Bakhtiari Province from 2010 to 2016, targeting Chaharmahal-va-Bakhtiari Province, which occupies about 50 percent of the Karoon River Basin. In that project, JICA provided support to build a participatory management system needed to restore and improve the vegetation, and to improve the standard of living for residents through creating income sources other than grazing.
The present project will extend the outcomes of “building a participatory management system and capacity development” and “improving the livelihoods of local communities” that emerged from the earlier project to throughout the Karoon River Basin. The project will also use Japanese afforestation technology such as stream work to improve the quality of disaster risk reduction projects carried out by the Iran side based on the master plan.
The project will also strengthen partnerships with related government agencies to promote integrated watershed management, contributing to conservation in the Karoon River Basin.
* Integrated watershed management: A watershed management approach carried out through the coordination of the relevant ministries for each river basin as laid out in Iran’s Sixth Five-Year National Development Plan.
|Country||Islamic Republic of Iran|
|Project title||The Project on Capacity Development for Participatory Forest and Rangeland Management in Upper Karoon Basin|
|Planned implementation period||December 2017 to December 2022|
|Executing agency||Forest, Rangeland and Watershed Management Organization|
|Target region, facilities||Upper basin of the Karoon River|
|Specific project details (provisional)||Build a participatory forest and rangeland management system for the watershed, develop the capacity of stakeholders, improve the livelihoods of local communities and transfer erosion control afforestation technology for conservation of the Karoon River Basin|