Impact of Environmental Factors on the National Security of Iran – A Case Study of Arak

Document Type : Original Articles


1 Associated professor, Department of Geology, Faculty of Earth sciences, Shahid Beheshti University

2 MA students, Departments of Managements, Imam Husain University, Tehran‚ Iran

3 Assistant Professor, Departments of Managements, Imam Husain University, Tehran ‚ Iran


The Arak Alumina Plant (Iralco) is located in the city of Arak in Central Province, Iran. The industry is of great social, economic, and political importance only for this province but for Iran as a whole. On the other hand, the industry is one of the environmental challenges of the province and the country. Hence, it is a typical case for understanding the relationship between national security and environmental problems. The following paper is the first attempt to set an example on how to deal with such issues. There is a growing perception that environmental degradation, inequitable access to natural resources and hazardous materials increase the probability of conflict and thereby pose a risk to human rights and even national security. This environmental security research seeks to facilitate a process to motivate action to advance and protect local peace and the environment at the same time. The following research focuses on assessing environmental problems in Iralco, which threaten security, societal stability and peace, human health and sustainable livelihoods within the country and the city of Arak. The results show the positive effect of the close collaboration of Government, security and environment offices, environmental and security experts and even local NGOs. Also, this research has carried out assessments for understanding the linkages between the environment and security in the political and socio-economic aspects of Iralco in Arak. The research also contributes to increasing the perception of the interdependency of natural resources, socio-economic development and political stability in Iran and other similar local industrialized regions.