Challenges and Opportunities of Industrial Ecology Development in Iran

Document Type : Original Research Paper


1 Department of Industrial Ecology, Institute of Development and Technology, ACECR, Sharif Branch, Tehran, Iran

2 Faculty of Environment, University of Tehran, Iran


In developing countries such as Iran it was after economic crises and the increase in price of energy carriers and primary resources that industrial ecology was taken into consideration as a method in industrial states. 941 industrial states in Iran have a high potential in creating material and energy flow networks with the industrial ecology approach to prevent massive energy loss and valuable waste and enable optimization. The aim of this research is to study the challenges and opportunities of industrial ecology development in Iran by reviewing the experiences in Iran and other countries. Industrial states are in two groups in terms of clustering, concentrated and non-concentrated on a certain industry for each of which two examples including Charmshar & Salariyeh state and Semnan state are mentioned and analyzed, respectively. Many challenges were discovered in developing industrial ecology, two of which were more important than the others. The first challenge, an unsuitable clustering of industry in Iran with the industrial ecology approach thus disabling the adequate cooperation between complementary industries of material and energy flow networks and the lack of use of the potential by them. The second challenge, lack of a suitable information database to design and execute material and energy flow networks between industries, and without the necessary information, providing the basic needs for proceedings in relation to industrial ecology will be very difficult.