EghtesadOnline: The project to build a new pipeline to transfer water from Nahand Dam to Tabriz, capital city of East Azarbaijan Province, has registered 95% progress, managing director of the provincial Regional Water Company said.
“The new pipeline, which has cost about $2 million, will become operational in July,” Yousef Ghaffarzadeh was also quoted as saying by Mehr News Agency.
More than 13% of drinking water required by Tabriz are supplied by Nahand Dam that is located 43 kilometers north of the provincial capital.
The new pipeline is to replace the old one to increase the water transfer capacity from 650 liters per second to 900 liters/second.
Low rainfall in the current water year (started September 2020) has caused water shortage in Tabriz similar to many other parts of the country. Therefore, to compensate for the lack of water, the provincial Regional Water Company has undertaken various water supply projects.
Besides the new water pipeline, drilling new wells is another program to supply water to Tabriz.
“By digging 30 wells, 300 to 400 liters per second of water will be added to the volume of water supplied to Tabriz. So far, 15 wells have been drilled,” Ghaffarzadeh said.
Water from Aras River in northwest Iran has been transferred to Tabriz but the project awaits the allocation of financial resources by the government.
The length of the water transmission pipeline from Aras River to Tabriz is 140 kilometers, of which about 35 km have been completed. Although environmental permits have been issued by the Department of Environment, the remaining 105 km have been waiting for the required funds for the past eight years.
When completed, the pipeline will supply water to 3.3 million people in 22 cities and 16 villages in and around Tabriz.
East Azarbaijan's share of water from Aras River amounts to 282 million cubic meters a year, of which 180 mcm will be used for farming and industries, and the rest as potable water.
The agriculture sector in East Azarbaijan has a 12% share in Iran’s gross domestic product, 20% share in employment and an 80% share in meeting food demand.
The province is home to 1.22 million hectares of farms. Raisins, dairy products, tomato paste, apple juice, onions, lettuce and cabbage are the main agricultural products of the province.
Originating in Turkey, Aras flows eastward and forms international boundaries between Armenia and the Republic of Azerbaijan to the north and Turkey and Iran in the south. After about 1,070 km, it joins the Kura River in Azerbaijan before reaching the Caspian Sea.
Iran is situated in an arid and semi-arid region, and average precipitation rate has fallen to levels way below the global average while underground water resources are drying up rapidly.
The average annual rainfall in the world is 750 millimeters, but the figure is 250 mm in Iran, which is one-third the global average.