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2020 Winners

Courtesy of Danial Khodaie

Danial Khodaie

Danial Khodaie was born in 1991, in Ahvaz, Iran, three years after the Iran-Iraq war ended (1980-1988). His hometown located close to the Iraqi border and was heavily affected by the war. Danial grew up surrounded by the after-effects of this war and the unique geography of his home province. Through these experiences, he was inspired to explore and try to understand contemporary human lives, the environment, and their bilateral impacts.

In 2015, he quit his university-studies in chemical engineering to pursue his main interest as a documentary photographer and filmmaker, Danial attends to the National Film School in Łódź, Poland, to study the Direction of photography.

Student: Winning Entry: Silent Death

Since 2002 Iran’s Khuzestan Province, located in Southwest of Iran has been engulfed by dust storms. The main cause and source of these dust particles appear to be situated within the southern portion of the Horol-Azim Wetland which was dried up by “National Iranian Oil Company” to facilitate oil exploration practices. The particle concentration of some of these dust storms has exceeded 10,000 micrograms per cubic meter (mg/cu.m) rather than the acceptable air pollution standard for dust particles in the air is about 150-200 mg/cu.m.

This crisis has made the city of Ahvaz be introduced as one of the most polluted cities in the world by the “World Health Organization” in 2011. On average about 22 thousand people in Khuzestan Province alone are referred to hospitals and healthcare centers due to respiratory and other problems caused by air pollution in 2011.

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