Yes, it’s a lousy pun, but what would you entitle this story? It comes via e-mail from a leading student of Iranian affairs:
For Iran, pistachios are a big export. They are also one of the world’s leading producers of such nuts. Because of a recent frost, however, the level of pistachios Iran produced this year plummeted from 300,000 tons last year to 100,000 this year. Nor will this be a dip of short duration. The combined drought and frost have now destroyed about 50% of the pistachio orchards nationally, and even 80% in some areas.
Internally, this has already caused Iranian pistachios to increase in price by about 26%. But the cut in production may translate into an even greater cut in export into international markets: According to Iranian papers, “most growers have started to stockpile pistachio in the hope of selling their supplies at higher prices later in the year.
To which an sensible person would have two immediate thoughts. First, this is another failure of global warming. And second, if you were a religious fanatic, would you view this as some sort of punishment for the mullahs?