Iran – Locust plague (DG ECHO, FAO, Humanitarian partners) (ECHO Daily Flash of 28 May 2020)

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  • Iran is facing the worst desert locust outbreak for the past 50 years for the second year in a row.

  • FAO’s updated locust appeal for Iran requests USD 17.5 million to control 800,000 ha of lands, so far funded with USD 1 million (FAO_Appeal). FAO’s appeal for the whole South West Asia requests USD 30 million to control 1 million ha of lands (FAO_SouthWestAsia_Appeal). In Iran so far 260,000 ha have been treated. More vehicles, ULV pesticides and sprayers are required.

  • Based on agricultural calendar there is a window of opportunity to scale up operations by the end of July, to reduce harvest damage. This is also key to minimize locusts’ migration to Pakistan and India.

  • Locusts may move from the Horn of Africa to the Iran/Pakistan border this summer, in Iran it is important to prepare for those returning in November.

  • Although FAO’s appeal extends until the end of December, immediate support is needed for both the immediate scale up until the end of July and to preposition equipment for when locusts return in November. It is imperative to successfully control the desert locust infestation in Iran, particularly, as the country is also significantly affected by the impact of US sanctions, coronavirus and floods.