Utilization of oceans due to their privileges in the areas of maritime transportation, marine food resources, mineral resources and security of the coastal states is of paramount importance.
In view of the fact that Iran enjoys more than 2700 km of coastline in Persian Gulf and Caspian Sea, existence of a national body tasked with conducting marine researches in Iran seems inevitable.
Accordingly the National Oceanographic Center was set up in the wake of agreement between Iranian Ministry of Science, Researches and Technology and UNESCO in 1991. The main objectives of the Center can be summed up as below:
1. Acting as a national center in oceanographic related studies;
2. Putting marine data and information available to the public and research institutions;
3. Monitoring and modeling of the marine and oceanographic currents and processes;
4. Developing of marine technologies;
5. Providing training in marine and oceanographic fields.
The National Oceanographic Center has been active in conducting various studies in Iranian coasts and gained vast amount of data and information regarding the marine resources and characteristics of the Persian Gulf and Oman Sea. To date, the Center has carried out 8 phases of oceanographic research patrols with a team of experts of different fields. It is preparing itself to conduct the 9th phase patrol in waters of Persian Gulf, Strait of Hormoze and Oman Sea.
The 9th phase is about to start while the 8th phase which was started in early August has come to an end a month ago. “The 8th phase of oceanographic patrols was carried out in Bushehr coasts and Strait of Hormoze with a team made up of expert specializing in marine physics, marine environment and chemistry”, the head of the center added.
Pointing out the achievements made during the oceanographic patrols in terms of gaining valuable data and information and providing to the scientific community, Mr. Chegini reiterated that the information gathered by the team included the physical, chemical, geological and environmental attributes of the sea bed as well as waters of Persian Gulf and Oman Sea and Caspian Sea.
The 9th phase of the oceanographic patrols is due to be carried out in Bushehr and Khozestan province (south of the country bordering Persian Gulf).
The 10th phase of the oceanographic patrols is in on the agenda. “This phase will be carried out in cooperation with different organizations related to the marine environment, the list of which will be announced later”, Mr. Chegini said. The timing the 10th phase has been set for December 2013.
These oceanographic patrols are carried out as a part of a broader international plan for monitoring and modeling the Indian Ocean. To date some $ 2 million has been spent for implantation of the plan.
Press Release, November 20, 2013