Saturday, January 12, 2008

"devlopement of dams" or the "developement dams"

In time when human feels need to his natural and cultural heritage more than past , the trend toward disrupting and destructing these possessions , caused the living health in globe to encounter the serious risks. Efforts to protect the valuable heritage has not been an amusing activity any more in anywhere in world and isn't a work of a certain group or special social class . Today the common needs of human beings caused they work together and be in a line protect their shared possessions. If human is seeking to guarantee his future life health , he has to give right all the elements and creatures of this world to continue their life and should be responsible to protect the valuable heritage against his self-constructed threats.
Although challenge against these threats have always been difficult , because it has been against personal or group benefits and in a optimistic manner against abolished development policies of governors , but the challenge become more difficult when the threats have been introduced the people as a symbol of development and civilization.
Perhaps, dams accounted one of the most important threats. Dams such as
ASWAN dam in Egypt , THREE GORGE dam in China , ILISU
dam in turkey , SIVAND and MOLASADRA dam in IRAN are typical threats which destruct and destroy the natural and cultural heritage of iranians and world people .
Although , speaking about campaign against constructing the different dams because of different reasons such as social and media limitations , lack of non-governmental organization (NGO) and finally the uncorrected and non-scientifically insights and views common within people and within specialists and managers, is considered a modern activity, but sivand dam and its inundation branches which destructed the bio-environmental and destroyed the ancient heritage of different historical periods , have been too disaster and disgrace that forced the people who are interested in bio-environment and Iran culture , protest against this decision . Of course, one can't ignore the weather or climate conditions and growing need to water resources influenced the people's views about the role of dams to meet the needs. But the destructive consequences of making dams in different countries stated as following:

What is obtained by making dam is less than what is lost

sivand dam / ilisu dam / three gorge dam

Friday, January 11, 2008

the history of sivand dam construction

In responding to public opposition " why the dam is located in an area which has the shortest distance with historic sites and Iranian civilization origin ?", the officials simply responded that the dam construction was planned during the previous regime era . In responding to this evasive answer, we must say that, according to collected data and researches it becomes clear that in the previous regime era there used to be a dyke or dam construction plan in the region of "bal sivand" which didn't used to threat historic sites and in the care of belonging this plan to the previous regime (sivand dam with current specification and location) does this case justify the current officials' mistakes, regarding the dam building? Data show that , some stone sluice used to be built in the region of tange-bolaghi with 15m height (one of these sluices remaining was discovered by power ministry bulldozer, interestingly enough , studies, by researchers and experts show that regarding the river level and the soil type , the maximum water height will not go higher than 15m . Finally, in late 1995 the members of Islamic parliament offered a legislation to construct a delaying dam on the sivand river. The legislation was passed with an 8 million $ credit . Now we ask power ministry officials how the sivand-dam with 8 million $ credit has turned in to a national plan with a credit more than 80 million $ ?

Thursday, January 10, 2008

sivand dam specification

The dam is 95 km far from Northern of
shiraz , 50 km Northern of the ancient city of persepolis (Takht-Jamshid) and 10 km far from the south of pasargadae , on the polwer (sivand) river . the polwer (sivand) river lies between the two historic sites registered in UNESCOS universal heritages (Takht Jamshid-Pasargard) and beside cyrus the great tomb in the heart of Tange – Bolaghi . Building operations was begun in 1371 (1992) by SEKO co . (under the supervision of IGG) .With the following specification:
A mud dam with clay core and a height of 57m, crown 600m long . It is estimated that the volume of water behind the dam will be 255 million m ³, and its area will be 11 km². The officials say that the aim of constructing the dame is to control
pulwar River flooding and watering the lands of ARSANJAN region with an area of 9000 hectares.
This canal is located in a distance of 90 km far from Northern Shiraz (center of Pars province) and in Pasargadae Hakhamanish section in a close distance to cruse the greate tomb and Pasargadae. According to explorations done by excavators more than 130 archeological sites have been discovered which include valuable works from 10000 years ago to Safavieh era. In addition to its high archeological value this canal does have a beautiful nature including more than 8000 plant species which have history of 500 years. This canal is located at heart of the region which used be named the civilization intersection .

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Violation of international laws and Rights

Although, there is no law to prevent the possible crime in Iran as opposed to other countries , but regarding the interpretation done by the department of rights in judiciary power, the government is responsible to preserve the cultural and natural heritage. And if they don’t fulfill the commitment , public may prosecute them . In fact, Tange Bolaghi is a natural museum for humankind living from Stone Age till civilization development which holds a high universal value . Hence any kind of damage to this site not only is damage to Iranian heritage but also damage to humankind . For this reason on September 22 (2004) UNESCO worriedly announced that By inundation Sivand dam, the preserved region of Pasargard registered in UNECSO will be flooded and the archeological sites lying in the region will be mysteriously buried for ever.
Construction of Sivand dam is in open violation regarding the international laws to which Iran is committed. For instance : according the article 22 of human rights declaration : every one is entitled to take part in his country's cultural life and make use of its arts and has a share in scientific developments and its benefits and that member countries of this accord, recognize every one's right to take part in cultural life and since Iran has to abide by this accord , the governments can't breach the accord by any justification . on the other hand , article 2 convention 1972 on natural & cultural heritage preservation declares : international community does recognize cultural heritage preservation and is committed to prevent any kind of deliberate damage in any form so that it will be possible to transfer this heritage to the next generation.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Cultural impacts

As a result of inundating many cultural relics and natural sites in Tange-bolaghi such as King way of achamenian , ancient villages DARIUS the great Palace , pottery furnace site , tile-making furnace , Ashkani tomb , etc . will be buried by water. Most of the archeological works in the region of Pasargadae will be damaged because as a result of inundation and increasing water level , the soil is soft and alluvium . Because most of the stones used in these works are calcareous, and are sensitive to moisture , by increasing moisture as a result of inundation , they will be destroyed in the long time.
Yet, no exploration has been made in Tange-bolaghi , regarding the historic sites , because as a result of refilling they will be buried by water. We may refer to a historic site dating back to the era of Bakun, which measures 10 hectares.
Although, regarding the Islamic Buildings resulted from these explorations no research has been done yet . In other areas only evacuation operations have been done partly.
We may recognize the damage scope in this area by means of Pro. Shahriar Adl's remark , who is an expert in archeology , He mentions that "As a result of refilling and sediment collection, the topography of the region will be changed or may be destroyed completely and there will be no way to prevent that ".
Damaging the value of Pasargard universal registration, which was registered in 2004 in an UNESCO session with majority of votes, is one of the consequences . But according to the international cultural heritage preservation law, Iran is obliged to preserve the archeological site of Pasargadae and must not put in jeopardy the boundary of this work which includes a part of Tange- bologhi.
In this way, some of the undiscovered history of the land will be out of reach of the next generation forever, whereas other countries are trying to obtain a credit by forging or colonizing other countries' cultural heritage , why our officials are trying to destroy our own heritage and declare findings as useless?
bolaghi gorge s photoes by : reza moradi ghiasabadi

Monday, January 7, 2008

Bio-Environmental impacts

These damages are high as a result of dam inundation . By inundation , the region plant coverage will be destroyed and at least 8000 trees with the age of 500 years and thousand hectares of agricultural lands will be destroyed . Because the soil is dry as a result of inundation , we won't be able to prevent the plant loss . The flow of river will be stopped and the ecology will be diminished.
Three months after refilling on 20/8/2007 Iranian press said , "one of the biggest bio environmental disasters is going to be happen". One of the saddest events was that more than two thousands of flamingoes living in
the lake of bakhtegan were died.
This lake is the second largest lake in Iran which lies at the heart of biggest Iranian national parks . At this time more than ten thousands of flamingoes were evacuated from the site by pro environmentalists.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Economic impacts

Despite public believing and many experts in this regard , the project isn't economically beneficial . The construction cost after the year of 2000 has been increased by eight times . Besides that , the soil of the region is alluvium and construction may not increase the water level up to more than 15m , and it is so called "dead water" that it is not usable.
The constructors say that" their aim is to provide Arsanjan region with water", but this is not possible because there is a 40 meter difference between the dam level and the level of Arsanjan region . Even though they may transfer the water to region at a high cost , but this is not economically judicious.

Saturday, January 5, 2008


Perhaps one of the challenges , which opposition leaders , are facing is to answer the following question:
Are there any alternatives to dam construction so as in addition to meeting the present needs to be able to protect the area's ecology and its natural resources?
Indeed the main and the most important duty of the experts are to find an answer to this question . And make use of these successful experiences. Otherwise, these efforts would be null and void in contrast to the development.
It is the duty of governmental organizations to devote their time and energy to achieve the optimized methods instead of development . Otherwise, all possessions will be destroyed . Now all pundits are aware that most of the issues which people are grappling with , are multi parametric and multi system issues and a linear method which focuses on one goal and reference which is completely void and unpractical.
In general, dams are being used to meet three main objectives , these objectives are as followings:

1-To supply tap water, agricultural water, and industrial water.
2-To manage the floods
3-To produce hydro electricity power

In this case , every alternative method , which takes the ecosystem safety into account , and meets some other needs could be used as an alternative plan . Note that , we may not offer a stable method to change and control different positions. And in some cases we have to apply different methods . Of course , these methods to be effective , we must have a long time planning to safeguard the ecosystem , the experience confirm using these methods. There used to be many sluices along the Sivand River, such as Amir (King) sluice to name a few . (This shows that our ancestors were concerned about the safety of environment in addition to making use of the nature)
According to local and governmental officials the dam of Sivand was planed in order to control and save river floods to irrigate the agricultural lands . Putting aside all the faults found with the location of dam in the previous section we may take the following points in to account:

1) Arsanjan plateau, located below the Sivand dam is not suitable for cultivation and it is known as salty water area . Farming is a holly and valuable profession but do any of officials think of that , what are the harmful consequences of farming on a salty land? But isn't it a better way to precede another policy regarding the position and conditions of the region and its people? Isn't it thoughtful to take the unique capacity of the region in to account and create a job opportunity for local people due its nearness to the archeological sites? The sap of big trees in the region is used in perfume making . Can't we install a company instead of cutting the 500-year-old trees down?
Facts show that during these two years the government was not concerned about protecting agricultural products . If it is not so, how does the government want to justify the extereme imports despite farmers' opposition?
2) It is said that one of the purposes of building the dam was to prevent the flooding. But remember that theses seasonal flooding is important for an ecosystem to continue its life and this is Human being who is making big changes in the ecosystem by moving along the rivers and constructing dams . But even in this case there are some other alternatives to control the flooding , Such as digging out presession canals planting along the rivers. Which are less costly.
3) Officials say that the main purpose of building the dam is to supply regional water. Besides that farming in this region is irrational we may say that there are other alternatives to meet the needs and prevent the dam construction such as:
1) System modifications & urban design & infrastructure.
2) Water conservation
3) Involve placing perforated: Infiltration galleries or runny wells pipes under streambeds to allow water to be withdrawn by pumping or gravity flow.
4) Desalination plants
5) Recycled or gray water
6) Rain water harvesting
7) Field practice
4) One of the modern ways in conserving the water in arid areas is a method called water conservation. This method is the best alternative in all ever the arid plateau of Fran and the central flat regions like Pars province to the lakes behind the dams which evaporate rapidly. For a very long time this kind of water conservation used in Iran even in the mountainous areas.

Friday, January 4, 2008

protesters claims

1) Publishing the results of archeology explores in Tangeh Bolaghi. It should be mentioned that officials of the cultural heritage organization announced in a mass media representation in 7th, 2, 2007 that the results of these explores would be reported in two weeks later but they haven't reported it yet.
2) Reporting the results of conducted researches about the moisture effect on stony constructions of Passargad and Great Koorosh tomb.
3) Discontinuing quickly the harvesting water of sivand dam.4) Warranting to stop by the interrogator of Tehran-Eqelab public court branch 9, and trial on case in a transparent manner with open court and announcing the news on mass media without any censorship.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Protest activities

The protests began in 2004 through e-mails or short messages . After passing 2 years of scattered and limited protests which were without harmony of different groups , it was the second half in 2006 in spite of pressures and threats to face the protesters , the trend of these protests interred in to a new phase in this phase and with approaching to the inundation time and also regarding to lack of attention of responsible departments to the requests and people's protests , made these groups hold on demonstrations against these in attention . The biggest demonstration was one that MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD , Iran president ordered to inundate of sivand dam.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Overview the protests according to time of occurrence

1) in Jan 20th, 2007 : the conference of cultural heritage organization about archeology excavations and the salvation of Tange-Bologhi celebrated. But the conference ended without an official manifesto because of attending some admirer and fonder of Iran nature and culture , however it was an indirect license to inundation of sivand dam at the end of conference . Surprisingly , the heads of related organizations declared that the necessary archeology and inundation of dam would be very soon.

But actually these organizations should protect the bio environment and cultural heritage of Iranians.

2) In Jan 21, 2007: some of the students of boy high school "Avecina" in city Shiraz sent a letter or written protest to Iran president , Shiraz cultural heritage organization and to power plant , against constructing sivand dam.

3) in feb 7 , 2007 : around 800 students of country universities protested against
harvesting water of sivand dam which may damage cyrus the great tomb through a deceleration . The declaration stated :
inundation of sivand dam in Pars province without attention to global ancient valuable works that result in destroying Tangeh-Bolah , empirical way , Darius the great palace , Passargadae works and destroying heavily cruse the great tomb , so just some actions without investigating or exploring were necessary . Students , who signed deceleration , compared such an action with destroying two Buda sculptures.

4) in feb 8 / 2007: after, the written and verbal protests of people representatives and organizations didn't come to a result , so some who were interested in Iran nature and culture , gathered in front of power ministry and left there when Ali Zadeh , who was undersecretary of power ministry promised to solve the problem through meeting . But the students gathered in front of traveling and cultural heritage organization and wanted the organization to cancel issuing license for inundation sivand dam.

5) In Feb 13, 2007: more than 30 parties and political groups belong to Iran parties home protested to inundation of sivand dam through signing a common declaration . The declaration arranged in five paragraph Which pointed out the damages resulted of sivand dam inundation and approved by more than 30 parties and political groups in general assembly of Iran parties home.

6) may 14 / 2007: more than 300 people of public representatives appeared facing Islamic consultative congress and called people representatives to consider people rights but it ended with ambiguous and unclear answers of a representative and finally the police force intervened and arrested some protesters for several hours. Then opposing against inundation of sivand dam ended with debate between cultural heritage organization and ministry of power heads and independence specialists, non-governmental organizations with the Medias news reporting without censorship. Amir Reza khadem, member of congress cultural commission attended and promised the Islamic congress to consider and verify any decision making about inundating sivand dam with consulting people representatives and non-governmental organizations. Also police arrested two representatives in this appearance but they released by protesters insistence.

7) In may 26 2007: some fonders of Iran nature and culture appeared in Pasargadae region and beside cyruse the great tomb and distributed some tracts which included some information about sivand dam and the reasons of opposition against dam inundation. Some people were arrested for several hours and protesters were forced to leave there . Then some protesters gathered beside cruse the great tomb but again this movement caused to arrest some protesters by police but they released by efforts of some local people and others.

8) In 11th, 4, 2007: more than 400 fonders of Iran nature and culture and some students gathered against cultural heritage organization when the news of inundating of sivand dam broadcasted in local news and when pictures of the lake behind the dam published that it was concurrent with president trip to Pars province. The protesters wanted to refuse giving license to ministry of power to harvest water of dam. But this time protesters broke the silence and chanted slogan to condemn the organization and wanted his head to resign. The opposition ended with chanting ' oh. Iran'' song.

9) In may13 , 2007: some private organizations , groups and fonder of country cultural heritage stated their worry about refilling sivand dam to public relations of Iran leadership . The head of Bargahe Mehr Isfahan institute said that: we went to public relations of leadership office and submitted our worry letter about refilling sivand dam attached to other unanswered letters which sent to president office.

10) May 18, 2007: ' TAHKIM VAHDAT office' protested against inundating of dam. Social and cultural secretary of TAHKIM VAHDAT office stated : we supports the aggregation and demonstration against cultural heritage organization and would attend in it .
they added , in one hand , if water harvesting of sivand dam hindered , so all the costs have been spent to construct the dam will be lost and in other hand, if it inundated, the Iran ancient work will be lost . why do the heads treat such that make people and themselves choose between bad and worst. So we opposite against this view that without investigating about doing works , they force all to accept the conducted work.
Even the heads of cultural heritage organization have been forced to accept the conducted work.
But the biggest protest was when the president Mahmood Ahmadi Nejad ordered to harvest water of dam that the news broadcasted by mass media . Some news agencies such as France press, routers, B.B.C and many domestic news agencies came to provide news of this demonstration.

11. 20/4/2007: through called "Passargadae student liberation committee" more than 800 students
and teachers appeared against cultural heritage organization to protest inundating sivand dam. They chanted slogans such as "elementary friend", "we will build homeland again" "oh. Iran". Also they protested against destructing cultural memorial Tangeh-Bolaghi and wanted to stop inundating sivand dam. They chanted slogan and wanted the head of organization to resign and mentioned the organization is inefficient about doing its tasks.

12.21/4/2007: the students of science and technique university opposed against inundation of sivand dam and they gathered against architecture and technique college of this university. Some students moved toward the main door of university and chanted slogan "oh. Iran" to show their objection.

13. In 23th, 4, 2007: some students of management and accounting college from Alameh Tabatabaye university signed a roll to protest against inundating sivand dam . The roll said :
at the time when in a corner of world there are 300 door to make Iranain name shameful and ugly , how can it be allowed some people sacrifice and destruct our old history by building dam and railway. Of course, there were some other scattered protests and appearances in different parts of country specially in Shiraz city and some protesters arrested by police and were threatened.

14. But in other oppositions, public organizations and those interested in natural and cultural heritage and human rights began to gather and sign a complaint against 2 members of Iran president, Mahmoud Ahmadi Nejat's cabinet that perhaps it is the first action in this position . The attorney of this case given to four lawyers from attorneys club and human rights attorneys, such as Mahammad Ali Dadkhad and
Shirin_Ebadi (winner of Nobel peace prise). By november 2007, about 5000 people signed the letter of attorney to give power of attorney for complaint.
Eventually, because of case sensitivity and accusers position , after several month with continuous effort by case lawyers, the first session of inquiry held on in June 18, 2007, that non of the accusers attended in court and the managing it by interrogator or judge was such that it implied inattention and unimportant protests and confirmed the governmental organization actions. Then after passing 6 months of complaint, it hasn't been issued temporary order so far. But according to law, the ultimate time to issue temporary order is 2 months. Even the interrogator refused to send expert to inspect it, these all occurred in a condition that according to constitutional law, irretrievable destructing the bio environment is banned. And defense of bio environment and historical, national, cultural heritage is legal right of all Iranian people.
Now in spite of the protests and efforts of people, the inundation of sivand dam is started and the last opportunities to save the 10000 years natural museum is losing. By complete inundation of this dam, the region nature and existed ancient works in Tangeh-Bolaghi will be lost forever . Pasargadae and cruse the great tomb as a human common heritage will be threatened seriously.

Sivand dam in news :

Rivernet :
Dams in Iran: reprieve for some, no time left for others .

Archeology news:
Iran: ecologists, archaeologists protest dam project

Iran dam sparks row about ancient Persian relic .here
Iranian protesters say dam threatens ancient site

The Guardian :
Dam is threat to Iran's heritage.

And other news :
http://,12858,1378845,00.html#top sivand dam petition

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

The protesters's request of you

Our request from public organizations and fonders of human rights , bio-environment and cultural heritage in all over the world is to reflect these destructing happenings and our protests and inform those interested in natural and cultural heritage thought the world by putting the logo of this protests on the web sites and send this text to those who are activ to help Iran people in this civil movement.