Reviewing the existing literature about the status of forestry in the Middle East is quite interesting and, at the same time, very depressing. The balance book for such a vast region is, in general, negative. However, there are a few encouraging efforts being undertaken regarding afforestation and forest protection in Israel and Saudi Arabia. The region is under various bioclimatic influences, including the Caspian zone (hyrcanian), Zagros-Mediterranian zone, Irano-Turanian zone, Saharo-Sindian zone and Khalijo-Ommanian zone. There are several subcategories in each zone, and cross-distribution of elements from one zone into others. There are so-called forests and forest plantations in almost all Middle Eastern countries; some areas where strands of forest are rare include the mountainous Elburz and Zagros regions. Sporadic dispersion of Juniper sp. stands can be found in Iran, Iraq, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. In order to evaluate the state of forestry in the Middle East, this review will mostly concentrate on forestry and forest management in Iran, as it represents a microcosm of the various climate types and geographical features found in the Middle East.
Abr Forest in North of Neishabour, Iran
Iran covers an area of 1.65 million km2, enclosed within 8731 km of frontiers, of which 2700 km are coastline boundaries and 6031 km of land borders. Almost 60% of the country is mountainous, while deserts of the High Central Plateau cover one third of the territory. Iran displays a wide variety of climates ranging from hyper-arid (center and eastern regions) to Mediterranean semi-arid and sub-humid (mountain regions) and humid (Caspian coastal area, Azerbayejan province and southwest Zagros mountainous regions). With a mean annual rainfall of 253 mm, Iran is drought-prone, with highly erratic and variable precipitation levels (1, 2).
Amygdalus sp., in Pars Province
Iran features three main climatic zones: Arid and semi-arid regions, with an annual precipitation rate of 30 mm to 250 mm in central and southern zone (covering nearly 90% of the country), Mediterranean climate with annual rainfall between 250 mm and 600 mm, mainly in the western Zagros mountains, the high plateau of Azerbaijan, and the Elburz mountains (covering about 5% of the land surface) and Humid and semi-humid regions, with an annual precipitation rate of 600 mm to 2000 mm mainly in the south of Caspian sea, but also in west Arasbaran province (covering about 5% of the land surface). The ecological region of Caspian Sea called Hyrcanian zone. Today forest areas cover some 12.4 million ha, about 7.5% of the area of the country (3, 4, 5). Hyrcanian forests cover 1.8 million ha of land area and are commercial forests of Iran. Approximately 60 percent of these forests are used for commercial purposes and the rest of them are degraded. The Hyrcanian forests are located at an altitude of a maximum of 2800 m above sea level and have an uneven topography and very steep slopes (6).
Forest Vegetation around Kheiroud, Mazandaran, North Iran
The complex and varied climates, topography, geological formations and anthropological management of natural resources have led to a varied and unique biological diversity. In the Iranian ecosystems over 8,000 species of plants, 140 species of mammals, 293 species of birds, 219 species of reptiles, 112 species of fishes and 23 species of amphibians have been recorded. This includes a large number of wild relatives of domesticated species, both plants and animals, confirming Iran’s status as a centre of genetic biodiversity. Because of its large size and varied ecosystems, Iran is one of the most important countries in the Middle East and Western Asia for conservation of biological diversity. Habitat diversity in Iran allows for a wide range of animals to be found Iran (7, 8).
Above Forest line Pastures in North Iran, Gorgan Province
The main land use categories of Iran are the following:
Forest (12.4 million ha, 7.4% of territory); rangelands (90 million ha, 55% of the country); deserts (34 million ha, 21% of the country); cultivated lands (23.6 million ha, 14.4% of territory), far exceeding the forest land area; urban and rural settlements, infrastructures and water bodies (4 million ha, 2.2% of the national territory). The total potential of arable land amounts to 37 million ha (17 million ha under irrigation and 20 million ha rain fed) (9).
Hassanabad Forest, Chalous, Mazandaran Province
The surface water and groundwater resources are divided into 37 basins and 174 watersheds. The country is drained by 3450 permanent and seasonal rivers. The Persian Gulf and the Caspian Sea receive the highest flows of these rivers. In 1996-97, precipitation generated 330 billion cubic meters (BCM) of surface water, 130 BCM renewable water and 126 BCM harvestable water resources, of which 87.5 BCM were harvested (94% used by agriculture). About 70 BCM groundwater were discharged in 1996 by 275300 semi- deep wells, 100700 deep wells, 46700 springs and 32000 qanat (9).
Quercus sp., Pistácio khinjuk and Acer sp. in Fars Province
Forests and Rangelands Global State
As previously mentioned, forests occupy 12.4 million ha (7.4 % of country) which 1.9 million ha of it is commercial forests. The rest amounts to 5.5 million ha (West and Zagros), 2.5 million ha (South and desert), and 2.5 million ha in other regions. Rangelands include lands covered by natural grassland, shrub-lands and a combination of both. Iran’s rangelands occupy 90 million ha (54.8% of the country’s area); the condition of 16% of the rangelands is excellent, whereas 66% are in favorable to fair condition and 18% are in poor and degraded form (9). As a result of losing ownership and usufruct rights, the ex-owners and the traditional forest dwellers/users have lost interest and a sense of responsibility for sustaining and protecting forests and rangelands; these have since been without restraint to face the growing demands that accompany population growth (10).
Mangrove Forest around Bandar Abbas in Southern Iran
Deforestation: The overall deforestation figure for the period 1958–1994 is widely accepted as being equal to about 5.6 million ha. The rates of deforestation according to the widely accepted classification of forests in Iran were as follows: Caspian broadleaf deciduous forest (1.5 million ha); Arasbaran broadleaf deciduous forest (100000 ha); Zagros natural forests (1.7 million ha); Irano-Touranian Central Forests (2 million ha); and Semi-savannah subtropical forests (300000 ha) (11).
Deforestation in Northern Iran, Mazandaran Province
Degradation of Oak and Pistachio Forest in Zagros. Remains of old tree stacks.
Changes in Vegetation Cover
In developing countries, a large portion of the human population depends almost entirely on natural resources for their livelihoods, resulting in changes in land use and vegetation. There are increasing concerns for sustainable management of the land resources and natural vegetation; however, vegetation has taken a noticeable decline, and the bare soil has suddenly exposed. Due to these changes, the incidence of floods has also increased. The flood which occurred in 1998 was extremely destructive, causing extreme damage to life and property. The impact of deforestation has led to an increase of barren land and soil erosion. These impacts have affected the water permeability of the soil. The rate of percolation has diminished, leading to the gushing of water into the Neka valley, North Iran, causing floods (12).
Hyrcanian Forests are converted to agricultural land in Northern Iran
Sustainable management of natural resources requires constant studying and monitoring of land-use and land-cover along with their changes at different spatial and temporal scales. The results of Mirzaei and his colleagues’ investigation using remote sensing between 1988 and 2013 in a region of Zagros region of Iran showed a 30.2 percent decrease in rangelands and forests of the area and more than 30% land-use change to poor rangelands and agriculture in the time interval studied (13). In another study conducted by Ali-Asghar Torahi, Suresh Chand Rai showed that between 1990 and 2006 the amount of forested land decreased from 67% to 38.5% of the total area, while rangelands, agriculture, settlement and surface water increased from 30.8% to 45%, 1.2% to 7.0%, 0.3% to 7.5% and 0.6% to 1.8%, respectively. The area was dominated by 35.9%, 28.9% and 29.3% dense forest, 42.2%, 46.4% and 43.2% open forest and 21.9%, 24.8% and 27.5% degraded forest in 1990, 1998 and 2006, respectively. During a period spanning sixteen years (1990-2006) about 10170.3 ha, 2963.4 ha, 351.7 ha and 3039.2 ha of forest lands were converted to rangeland, agriculture, water bodies and settlements (14).
Oak Forest in Zagros converted to Pasture.
Land use and cover change was also detected and observed in Lajimrood Drainage Basin in northern parts of Iran, an area characterized by rich and diversified agricultural and forest mosaic. The main changes in this area were forest–arable land transformation. The results showed that the area with forest land use decreased about 3.2% in transition 1967–2002. Also, arable land increased about 36.9% (15).
Other researchers showed that two normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) statistics have notably demonstrated the shifting trends in agricultural land’s area percentage from 1990 to 2006 as well. According to their results, the agricultural lands area decreased from 2178.90 ha in the year 1990 to about 640.56 ha in 2006. In fact, the green areas (agricultural lands) have been decreased from approximately 14% of the whole area to about 4% during the 16 year period. The main changes observed for the time period of 1990 to 2006 are attributable to urbanization of land, from 30.15 to 21.76% of total land area. The investigators’ procedures indicated the decrease rate of about 10% in green areas. Several factors have had a significant impact on land use and land cover (LULC) changes observed during the study period. In this regard, loss of valuable land resources, water deficiency, population growth and urban area expansion are the major factors behind the LULC changes observed in the study area (16). Such trends of land use and cover have been detected in other urban areas (17). In contrast to the aforementioned findings, Iranian authorities are claiming no assessment has been made on the forest annual cover changes. Considering that the present deforestation is limited, the average annual plantation rate of 63000 ha should result in a slight positive change in national vegetation cover (1).
Cupresus arizonica plantation in Karaj.
Natural Forests: From a forestry point of view, Iran is divided into five vegetation regions as follows: Hyrcanian broad-leaved forests occupy 1905000 ha along the Caspian coast; 150000 ha of Arasbaran forests can be found in northwestern Iran; Irano-Touranian arid forests occupy 2895000 ha in the Central Plateau Region; Zagrosian forests occupy roughly 5050000 ha and the tropical mangrove forests found in the Persian Gulf and the Sea of Oman occupy 2400000 ha (9).
Degraded Forests in Zagros mountains.
Planted Forests: During the period 1960-1999, afforestation amounted to 2221000 hectares (ha). The annual rate of forest plantations is 63000 ha,. the majority being planted using public money. Tree species planted are generally limited to indigenous or acclimatized exotic species. To ensure maximum success, most plantations are irrigated during 2-3 seasons(1, 18, 19). Water shortages are a major constraint to planting, particularly in arid zones (20). Site preparation costs are high, and establishment of irrigation facilities is very expensive. The Iranian state grants substantial support to private investment in fast-growing tree species plantations (poplar), which amount to 150000 ha of which 35% are young stands (2).
Eucalyptus camedulensis plantation in Southern Iran, 1978.
Trees outside Forests: There is no direct definition of ‘trees outside forests’. The concept is defined by FAO by default in terms of the forest, as follows: “trees growing outside the forest and not belonging to the category of forests, forest lands, or other wooded land”. According to this definition, trees outside forests are located on “other land”, such as agricultural land, built-up areas such as settlements and infrastructure, as well as bare land, sand dunes and former mining areas, etc. (21). The present evaluation of trees outside forests in Iran is incomplete due to lack of comprehensive data and information. In 2000 it was estimated that orchards accounted for 1704000 ha, about 14% of the total forest area of Iran. Collaborative efforts between government, municipalities, NGOs and citizens’ groups have led to the establishment of a quite dense network of urban and peri-urban forests in Iran, estimated in 1996 to be 530288 ha (mean annual area treated 3760 ha). Urban and peri-urban forestry is gaining momentum in the country and many provinces have developed their own urban forestry establishment programs (2).
Mature Eucalyptus trees around Bam in Kerman Province in 1979.
Cottonwood plantation in Taleqan Valley, Qazvin Province 1975.
Causes and Effects of Deforestation and Degradation: Deforestation in Iran has been more rapid in the past 50 years than at any time in Iran’s history. Intensive cultivation and mismanagement have caused environmental problems and soil degradation. Soils which developed under natural forests in north Iran have been degraded by land use changes (22).
Conversion of natural forest lands into croplands, which is triggered by the rapid population growth, causes serious soil degradation. Hillsides located in eastern Golestan province of Iran is an example. According to a study conducted in this area investigating the role of deforestation and slope position on soil quality attributes have been investigated. Micro-morphological investigations revealed that the forest soils had strong granular and crumb microstructure with a high porosity indicating the presence of high amounts of organic matter. The high microbial and faunal activity was confirmed through the presence of obvious features in the topsoil of the forest. Lower organic matter and consequently microbial activity in the topsoil of the deforested areas have resulted in massive microstructure with little porosity (23). Flooding in Golestan province is no longer an unexpected event. Every year this destructive event causes great damage in farmlands and civil constructions. Deforestation and land use change have created serious problems in the north of Iran. During the past three decades, the forest coverage has decreased from 18 to 12.2 million hectares. Although deforestation and land use\cover change has often been mentioned as the prime reason for flooding, tree cutting is not taking the main responsibility. Forest degradation also has negative consequence on soil quality and health (24).
Various wild bushes of Almond and Pistachio around a wash in Bafq, Yazd Province.
Causes of deforestation are the forces that motivate the agents to clear the forests. However, most of the existing literature typically distinguishes between two specific factors: direct and indirect causes of deforestation. Direct agents and causes of deforestation, also typically referred to as sources of deforestation, are first-level or proximate causes and are relatively easy to identify. But the indirect causes, which are usually the main drivers of deforestation, are the ones that generate the most disagreement and the ones that are hardest to quantify (25).
An old natural stack of Pistachio in a plate between Nadooshan, Yazd and swamp of Gavkhooni, Isfahan Province.
During the last few decades, the deforestation crisis has prompted many international, regional and national preservation initiatives, yet few have been successful. There is general agreement that this is due to the fact that these strategies were too focused on the immediate causes of deforestation, and neglected the underlying causes which are multiple and interrelated. In some cases they are related to major international economic phenomena, such as macroeconomic strategies which provide a strong incentive for short-term profit-making instead of long-term sustainability. Also important are deep-rooted social structures, which result in inequalities in land tenure, discrimination against indigenous peoples, subsistence farmers and poor people in general. In other cases they include political factors such as the lack of participatory democracy, the influence of the military and the exploitation of rural areas by urban elites. Overconsumption by consumers in high-income countries constitutes another of the major underlying causes of deforestation, while in some regions uncontrolled industrialization is at the heart of forest degradation with widespread pollution resulting in acid rain (26).
Historical evidence indicates that the vast, arid areas of central Iran, were once covered with valuable range forage and forest vegetation (27). Human activities are believed to have strongly contributed to desertification (28, 29, 30). Some of the most noticeable indirect causes to deforestation and forest land degradation are land and water tenure and users’ rights and incentives granted to enhance agricultural production, which have constituted an encouragement to extend the areas cultivated by converting degraded forests and rangelands with the State’s consent to agricultural land. At the same time, indirect incentives granted for forest and rangeland exploitation through the omission of tax products and incomes derived from such operations, promoting excessive water mobilization as an encouragement to the extension of productive irrigated agriculture, mostly implemented through forest and rangeland clearing; and land nationalization, which is held responsible for the breakdown of traditional systems of forest and range management, resulting in the disintegration of the forest and range resources. Based on a report by Forest, Range and Watershed Organization of Iran, in every second about 300 square meter of forests are destroyed annually (31).
Natural Pistachio in mountains, Yazd.
The current situation of Iran’s natural resources is a reflection of its past and present social, ecological, technological, economic, political and administrative measures. Technical or engineering solutions are not enough, and so they need to take into account the needs, priorities and aspirations of all in general, especially the rural poor. The response capacity to forest and range misuse issues is weak, because of inability to react on a timely basis to misuse and calamity impacts, for lack of timely will, intention, reliable data and information, and some gaps in knowledge related to natural resources’ participatory procedures.
According to some observers, the absence of sound land-use laws is the cause of shrinking forests and woodlands and causing the steady desertification of the Iranian plateau. Politically and economically-powerful people or their close relatives manage to get hold of the licenses to exploit the forest resources, particularly timber, and do as they please. At stake now are the Caspian ( ancient Hyrcania) forests covering the north slopes of Elburz mountains, Arasbaran forests, the central woodlands and the thin forests on the slopes of the Zagros mountains; and the coastal forests of the Persian Gulf (32).
Old Juniper stand between Bafq city and central desert of Iran.
Natural resource degradation results in poverty expansion. The new population groups affected by poverty are the rural- to-urban migrants, the landless and near-landless, the disabled, and the rural female group. The collapse of various production systems, which are not economically viable anymore, forces more rural population to migrate to cities. Regarding the extent of deforestation, clearing forest for agriculture, forage production and firewood and charcoal has reduced forests by 30 % over the last 40 years.
Despite imposing resource rehabilitation programs, the Iranian government has not significantly and sustainably contributed to poverty alleviation among forest and rangeland dwellers; following nationalization of all lands, rapid population growth as well as unsustainable human activities and other natural causes, Iranian forests and rangelands have lost very substantial areas in the last decades (1, 33).
Amygdalus scoparia and Celtis sp. in Mehriz, Yazd province, 1979.
Corruption is the main reason why resource-rich countries, such as Islamic Republic of Iran, perform so badly in economic terms. Corruption takes two main forms: rent-seeking and patronage. Resource rents induce rent-seeking as individuals compete for a share of the rents rather than use their time and skills more productively. Resource revenues also induce patronage as governments pay off supporters to stay in power, resulting in reduced accountability and an inferior allocation of public funds. The main conclusion that can be drawn from this is that priority should be given to policies that address rent-seeking and patronage. In other words, policy in resource-rich countries should be less about macro-economic management and more about institutions to prevent rent-seeking and patronage and about giving the right incentives to players in the resource sector. Moreover, all policies need to take into account their impact on rent-seeking and patronage, and some current policies may actually be harmful in this respect (34, 35).
The sustainable management of forest requires a greater understanding of current and potential future value of forest ecosystems as a complete chain of benefits for public and private sector, and this would limit utilization of forests for short-term benefits (36).
Empowerment of people should be basic element of any program regarding protection of natural resources. It should include clear rules and guideline for decentralization in decision making, management and empowerment of local people and institutional development to ensure good governance at local level (37).
Typical Fagus orientalis forest.
Since 1996, several Forest Resources Management Plans (FRMPs) have been launched by the Iranian government in order to introduce sustainable forest management in the Zagros area in west and south-west Iran. This survey study aimed to provide some policy recommendations in order to launch more successful FRMPs. Using a proportional cluster random sampling method, data were collected from 208 forest-dwellers (beneficiaries) and 90 practitioners. The results showed that the FRMPs are far from satisfactory. There are several reasons for their failure. First, the financial resources allocated to these plans are being used for other purposes. Second, the inputs and supplies needed for effective forest management interventions were not in place in a timely manner. Third, the forest management in the area is far from being decentralized. Both the beneficiaries and practitioners believe that forest-dwellers play a weak role in forest management interventions (38).
Typical Arasbaran Forest, n eastern Azarbaijan Province.
The forests of Iran are threatened by a combination of many factors including habitat loss and fragmentation, overpopulation, overconsumption, land exploitation, socioeconomic problems, policy failures, weak government structure, poor policy, incomprehensible legislation, mismanagement, conflicts between different institutions involved in forest plans administration and forests dwellers, low forestry personnel morale to implement change, distribution of invasive species, pollution, climate change, inadequate funds, and forestry without local representation. As a result, Iran’s forests continue to be lost and the ecosystem services are increasingly being disturbed. Iran’s classical forestry fails to win the support of rural communities and poses a serious economic and environmental threat. Therefore, Iran’s rural inhabitants find very little motivation to support government forestry conservation and restoration programs (39).
A perfect stand of Beach tree.
While there is no doubt that from an ecological point of view even potentially intact ecosystems are damaged as a result of the degradation of their adjacent areas. It is clear that nowadays there are hardly any virgin forest areas left in Iran. Even those sections of the Caspian forest belt that still seem to be abundant in vegetation cover have experienced selective exploitation through timber logging, forest pasture, and various forms of individual tree cutting for charcoal, building material, and similar uses. The history of deforestation requires a differentiated approach in regard to space and time.
Today, Iran has hardly any virgin forests left. Deforestation as a result of the millennia old human impact on the natural environment, population growth, appropriation of land for agriculture, exploitation of forests by dwellers, and increasing demand for wood as construction material or as firewood (charcoal) have destroyed or depleted the forest resources of the country. It is difficult to reconstruct the original distribution and composition of the Persian forest ecosystems. It is equally difficult to identify primary and secondary causes of their destruction and to attribute these causes to specific periods of history. As already indicated, the present poor state of forestry in Iran cannot be attributed to a single cause. However, extremely poor government vision and policies toward forestry cannot be dismissed. As this paper and many other research studies and international think tanks have indicated, only a miracle could save the natural habitats in Iran.
Since Natural characteristics of forests and woodlands vary within short distances in Iran. Therefore, it is crucial that any ecosystem rehabilitation planning due to the fact of its complexity to be site-specific. Projects implementation and adaptation must be analyzed in detail by a chamber of experts of all related natural resources subjects for location, climate, vegetation cover, topography of site, physical and chemical characteristics of the soil, legal status of the area under plan, existence of social conflicts and the demands of the local communities.
Adaptation of available participatory approaches and tools for rehabilitation and restoration projects with different management objectives, socioeconomic and ecological conditions, and stakeholder groups. Determination of simple technical guidelines on how to design, implement and monitor efforts, incorporating participatory approaches and tools for different objectives and site conditions.
Implementation of the most up to date knowledge in research, training and retraining of project staffs on all related matters of the rehabilitation plans, especially toward natural, socio-economic issues of local participants and other beneficiaries. ?Evaluating and sharing prospects for forest products and environmental service payments to near communities and public in general. This includes the feasibility of producing timber for industries; firewood, and other forest products for local needs and markets; and payments for biodiversity and watershed conservation at the local and national levels. ?Framework for assessing potential contribution and impact of different rehabilitation approaches to communities, as a genuine cooperative between state and people, in comparison with other local income-earning opportunities and alternative land-uses. ?Boosting policy and implementation support for genuine local participation, consideration of local needs and ownership of the projects.
2. Esmaeil Kouhgardi et al (2012). How Plantations Can Affect Sustainable Forest Management in Iran. International Conference on Environmental, Biomedical and Biotechnology, 41.
3. Mossadegh, A, 1996. Silviculture. University of Tehran press, Tehran, Iran, pp. 481.
4. Marvi Mohadjer M, 2005. Silviculture. University of Tehran Press, Tehran, Iran, pp. 387.
5. Heshmati GA, 2007. Vegetation characteristics of four ecological zones of Iran. Int. J. Plant Prod. 1(2): 215-224.
6. Farzam Tavankar and Afraz Iranparast Bodaghi (2013). Evaluation of survival and growth of coniferous species plantation in Hyrcanian forests, North of Iran. International journal of Agronomy and Plant Production. 4 (3)530-536.
8. Hossein Akhani et al (2010). PLANT BIODIVERSITY OF HYRCANIAN RELICT FORESTS, N IRAN: AN OVERVIEW OF THE FLORA, VEGETATION, PALEOECOLOGY AND CONSERVATION. Pak. J. Bot., Special Issue (S.I. Ali Festschrift) 42: 231-258.
10. M. Tashakori Ghojdy, Ali Masumian, A. Shirvany (2011). LOOKING FOR SUSTAINABILITY IN TRADITIONAL SMALL SCALE FOREST MANAGEMENT IN NORTH WESTERN FORESTS OF IRAN (ARASBARAN). IUFRO.
11. Khosro Sagheb-Talebi, Peyman Yousefi and Mona Kananian (2009). Forest Rehabilitation in Iran.Keep Asia Green Volume IV “West and Central Asia”.
12. Hassan Ahmadi and Asima Nusrath (2010). Vegetation Change Detection of Neka River in Iran by Using Remote-sensing and GIS. Journal of Geography and Geology, 2 (1)58-67.
13. Mirzaei, J. et al (2015). Assessment of Land Cover Changes Using RS and GIS (Case Study: Zagros forests, Iran). J. Mater. Environ. Sci. 6 (9) 2565-2572.
14. Ali Asghar Torahi and Suresh Chand Rai (2011). Land Cover Classification and Forest Change Analysis, Using Satellite Imagery – A Case Study in Dehdez Area of Zagros Mountain in Iran. Journal of Geographic Information System, 3:1-11.
15. Ataollah Kelarestaghi , Zeinab Jafarian Jeloudar (2011). Land use/cover change and driving force analyses in parts of northern Iran using RS and GIS techniques. Arabian Journal of Geosciences,4(3)401-411.
16. Ehsan Sahebjalal and Kazem Dashtekian (2013). Analysis of land use-land covers changes using normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) differencing and classification methods. African journal of Agricultural Research, 8(37)4614-4622.
17. Mohsen Dadras et al (2014). Land Use/Cover Change Detection and Urban Sprawl Analysis in Bandar Abbas City, Iran. Hindawi Publishing Corporation, Scientific World Journal, Volume 2014, Article ID 690872, 12 pages http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2014/690872.
19. Hassan Poorbabaei and Gader Poorrahmati (2009). Plant species diversity in loblolly pine (Pinus taeda L.) and sugi (Cryptomeria japonica D. Don.) plantations in the western Guilan, Iran. International Journal of Biodiversity and Conservation, 1(2) 38-44.
22. Amir Bahrami, Iraj Emadodin, Maryam Ranjbar Atashi and Hans Rudolf Bork. Land-use change and soil degradation (2010): A case study, North of Iran. Agric. Biol. J. N. Am., 1(4): 600-605.
23. F. Khormali, M. Ajami, S. Ayoubi, Ch. Srinivasarao, S.P. Wani (2009) Role of deforestation and hillslope position on soil quality attributes of loess-derived soils in Golestan province, Iran. Agriculture, Ecosystems & Environment, 134(3-4): 178-189.
24. Farshad Kiani et al (2004). Effect of deforestation on selected soil quality attributes in loess-derived landforms of Golestan province, northern Iran. Proceedings of The Fourth International Iran & Russia Conference, 546-550.
28. NAOMI F. MILLER (1985). PALEO-ETHNOBOTANICAL EVIDENCE FOR DEFORESTATION IN ANCIENT IRAN: A CASE STUDY OF URBAN MALYAN. J. Ethnobiol. 5(1):1-19.
29. J. F. Hosseini (2011). EFFECTIVE EXTENSION METHODS IN IMPROVING SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENT IN IRAN. ARPN Journal of Agricultural and Biological Science, 6(12) 8-11.
30. Majid Loghmanpour, Zhirair Vardanian, Hadi Kiadaliri, Mohsen Elahi (2012). To Review Climate Change Effects on Basic Resources (A Case Study of These Effects on Zagros Forests). International Conference on Applied Life Sciences (ICALS2012), Turkey, September 2012.
31. J. F. Hosseini and M. S. Sabouri (2010). The Perception of Natural Resources Experts about Factors Influencing the Participation of Beneficiaries in Protecting Pastures. Research Journal of Biological Sciences, 5(9) 606-609.
35. Corruption and Environment. A project for: Transparency International
Environmental Science and Policy Workshop Columbia University, School of International & Public Affairs April 2006.
36. De Montalembert M. and Schmithussen R. 1994. Policy, legal and Institutional aspects of sustainable forest management. Readings in Sustainable Forest Management. Food and Agriculture Organization of United Nations, Rome, Italy.
37. FAO. 2006. The role of agriculture and rural development in revitalizing abandoned and depopulated areas. Policy assistance branch, regional office in Europe.
38. Azadi, H., Samari, D., Zarafshani, K. et al (2013). Sustainable forest management in Iran: a factor analysis. Sustain Sci, 8: 543.