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Why renewable energy is booming in Iran

Unshackled from crippling nuclear-related sanctions but faced with low oil prices, Iran turns to renewable energy in preparation for the future.
Wind turbines are seen in Manjil, in the province of Gilan, August 7, 2013. Picture taken August 7, 2013.       REUTERS/Michelle Moghtader (IRAN  - Tags: ENERGY)   - RTR4D5G6
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TEHRAN, Iran — On Sept. 10, Iran and Russia launched a project to add two new 1,000-megawatt (MW) reactors to the already existing 1,000-MW reactor at the Bushehr nuclear power plant in the southwest of the country. The operating plant was connected to Iran’s national grid in September 2011, following a long series of delays and technical problems, and amid a dispute between Tehran and the West over Iran’s nuclear program.

Iran, with a population of over 80 million, has the fourth-largest oil reserves and the second-largest natural gas reserves in the world. But despite its rich hydrocarbon resources, the country is pursuing projects to construct more nuclear reactors as part of efforts to increase its reliance on renewable energy sources as it has an advantageous topography for renewables.

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