Golden Horn given water transfusion

Golden Horn given water transfusion

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Golden Horn given water transfusion

Turkish Prime Minister Erdoğan explains how the new water project for Istanbul’s Golden Horn works before giving a start to begin pumping water. AA photo

Turkish authorities launched a new project yesterday to replenish the Golden Horn’s water sources and increase biological diversity in the area by piping water in from the Bosphorus to a creek that feeds the prominent inlet.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan helped launch the project, which will transport water from Çayırbaşı in Sarıyer to Ayazağa five kilometers away; from Ayazağa, which is 23 meters above sea level, the water will enter the Kağıthane Creek and flow another nine kilometers to the Golden Horn. Ultimately, the project aims to transport 260,000 cubic meters of water a day.

Speaking at the opening, Erdoğan said the Golden Horn project, which was begun in 1995 while he was the Istanbul metropolitan mayor, had increased the biological diversity in the Golden Horn. “The number of fish species living in the Golden Horn is now 48 after we cleaned the sea floor. This project we are launching today is to prevent any future contamination of the Golden Horn by enabling water circulation so that we ensure the Golden Horn waters keep circulating throughout the year even when there is no rainfall,” he said.

Biological diversity

The pipes pumped out 5 million cubic meters of mud and filled the stone quarry pits, which were then turned into a 180,000-square-meter park. The project increased biological diversity and netted the city an award from the World Municipalities Union. The total cost of the present project has been announced as 44 million Turkish Liras, while the total amount spent on cleaning the Golden Horn so far has reached $758 million.

The final step of the project is the Golden Horn Environmental Protection, which is expected to cost 434 million Liras.When the rehabilitation studies were started, the water depth in the Golden Horn had fallen to 50 centimeters, meaning boats were unable to navigate the waterway. The Golden Horn (Haliç) is an inlet of the Bosphorus dividing the city of Istanbul and forming the natural harbor that has sheltered many for thousands of years. It is a horn-shaped inlet joins the Bosphorus just at the point where that strait enters the Sea of Marmara.