The Current

Parts of Tehran are sinking into the ground at 25cm a year, says scientist

We hear from scientists who are saying we need to pay more attention to something called subsidence, or sinking ground, because they say is being exacerbated by climate change.

Professor says we need to pay attention to human factors leading to subsidence

This a view of an airport in Tehran, Iran, where subsidence is being recorded via satellite. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)
Listen19:39

Read Story Transcript

Scientists are saying we need to pay more attention to something called subsidence, where the removal of water from the earth causes the ground to sink. Climate change is exacerbating the human-induced conditions that cause it, they warn, adding that subsidence could cause significant financial and human costs.

The phenomenon is being reported in parts of the world as far apart as Tehran, California and Louisiana.

Industrial and agricultural development is a leading cause of the issue, Motagh tells Anna Maria Tremonti. 0:50

To discuss the problem, The Current's Anna Maria Tremonti spoke to:

  • Mahdi Motagh, a professor in radar remote sensing at GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences at Leibniz University, Hanover.
  • Christa Russell, a biologist and coastal scientist with the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana.

Click 'listen' near the top of this page to hear the full discussion.


Produced by Caro Rolando and Danielle Carr.

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