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Photographer's Note

The only photograph of Tehran that I have posted to TrekEarth to date is one of Tehran’s infamous smog (see here), so in the interests of fair and balanced reporting, I am delighted to share this photograph of the view from my hotel window in Tehran yesterday morning – a beautiful spring clean air day!

I am staying on the north side of Tehran, and this is a view taken at 9.00 am in the morning looking north towards the Alborz Mountains which still have a little snow left on top.

The Tehran local government this year took some drastic measures to reduce air pollution in the city.
After a ten day inversion in the middle of winter that caused one of the worst smogs that Tehran had seen in years, it introduced a system whereby cars (which are the major source of the air pollution) would be permitted only to enter the central area of the city on certain days of the week.

Tehran has already had a permit system for many years of restricting cars to the centre of the city to those owned by people who live or work in the city centre, but in January it was decided to create a second zone, extending the restrictions out another 3-4 kms or so. In this second zone, only cars with their number plates ending in an even number can enter on Saturdays, Mondays and Wednesdays, and cars with their number plates ending in odd numbers on Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

On Fridays, there are no restrictions on driving in the city centre because this day in Iran (as is the case in most Muslim countries) is equivalent to a Sunday in western countries (which is why there is so little traffic on the freeway in the foreground of this picture - yesterday being a Friday morning).

I gleaned this information from fellow TrekEarther Ali Adolrashidi when he very kindly took me on a tour of Tehran yesterday afternoon. It was a delight to see the city minus its traffic jams and visit a few places to see how the locals relax on a Friday afternoon (I shall post some more photos from Iran in the coming weeks).

Ali told me that the new restrictions have been well accepted by the population, and already some improvement in the air quality seems evident. He also mentioned that some rich people now have two cars – one with even number plates and one with odd number plates. I suppose that happens anywhere in the world if you have the money – what’s the cost of a new car to avoid a little inconvenience!

PP: Did a minor perspective adjustment on this as I used my 12 – 24 mm wide angle lens, cropped, USM at 350% (0.4).

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Additional Photos by David Astley (banyanman) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1237 W: 108 N: 2568] (7789)
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