Agriculture Ministry: An integrated project to mitigate the impacts of dust storms

The Ministry of Agriculture revealed Saturday, internal and external moves to combat desertification in the country, while confirming exerting utmost efforts to rehabilitate forests and natural pasture plants.
The Director-General of the Department of Forestry and Combating Desertification in the Ministry of Agriculture, Rawya Mazal, told the Iraqi News Agency (INA), that “The Department of Forestry and Combating Desertification in the Ministry of Agriculture will start a afforestation campaign that includes a number of sites in the country, pointing out that” The department is now in the process of preparing for the annual autumn campaign to combat desertification and reduce the negative effects of climatic changes and high temperature.”
She added that “on the internal level, the sand dune stabilization project has started on the international highway linking the governorates (Dhi Qar, Muthanna and Diwaniyah), with mud covering work for sand dunes, after which there will be mechanical stabilization works, biological stabilization works, afforestation, and finding water sources for the purpose of irrigation those plants,” indicating that “the aim is to reduce the negative effects of dust and dust storms, which have recently become familiar in Iraq,”
“The project is part of the Diwani order headed by the Secretary-General of the Council of Ministers, Hamid Al-Ghazi, as the project will be integrated to eliminate the phenomenon of desertification and dust and dust storms in the country.”
She noted that “At the international level, special working papers have been prepared for each ministry that is to be submitted with delegations to develop a strategic vision to reduce the negative impacts and combat desertification, and also focus on the water and drought issues that Iraq suffers from, ” Pointing out that “the papers will be presented at the Cairo Conference on International Parties, which will be held on the twenty-seventh of  next November.”

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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