Tehran down the sinkhole: How drought threatens Iranian stability

Massive sinkholes are spreading around the Islamic Republic, leading some to question the stability of a regional player.

January 31, 2019 16:18
Tehran down the sinkhole: How drought threatens Iranian stability

Iranians burn a U.S. flag during a protest against President Donald Trump's decision to walk out of a 2015 nuclear deal, in Tehran, Iran, May 11, 2018. . (photo credit: REUTERS)


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For the first time, Iranian officials admit that the ground around Tehran is sinking.

Slower than an earthquake, sinkholes and massive cracks can be just as destructive over long stretches of time.

A 30 year drought and excessive water pumping created a series of underground air-pockets which then implode, creating cracks or massive holes in the ground that endanger agriculture, roads and public safety, the Christian Science Monitor reported.

In the neighborhood of Yaft Abad in Tehran, residents fear poorly built buildings will collapse after water-pipes already burst and cracks appeared on several walls.

The ground is sinking under airports, oil refineries, and factories without distinction. Leading many in the Islamic Republic to support much over-due reforms in water usage and agriculture.

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