August 25, 2022
Hundreds of people have taken to the streets in the western Iranian city of Hamedan to protest against a complete cut in water supplies that has lasted several days.
According to videos published on social media on August 23, the protesters called officials “incompetent” as the water crisis intensified along with the summer heat.
Several parts of the country have experienced water issues — and protests over the crisis — in recent weeks, including the cities of Shahrekord in central Iran and Hamedan in the west.
The governor of Hamedan has also been criticized for not rationing water in order to prevent the crisis. He claims officials from the Energy Ministry rejected rationing.
Diminishing water supplies are seen as an existential threat to Iran, where poor water management, drought, and corruption-ridden infrastructure projects have contributed to water scarcity and resulting protests around the country in recent years.
Experts say climate change has amplified the droughts and floods plaguing Iran and that their intensity and frequency in turn threaten food security.
The Iranian Meteorological Organization has estimated that 97 percent of the country is experiencing drought to some degree.
Mismanagement by the authorities has also been cited as a main cause for the water crisis.