Greenpeace activists call for halt to coal plant frenzy in mythical Kaz Mountains
Greenpeace activists hold a banner reading 'Don't let Kaz Mountains to breathe coal' off Çanakkale coast, Sept. 17. AA Photo
Banners opened by fishermen to greet the group during a demonstration aboard the boats read 'unfurl the sails against coal' or 'wind is enough for us.'
Activists stressed that Çanakkale's Karabiga district in the coastal mountain range, known as Mount Ida in Greek mythology and famed for its preserved nature, were home to 13 coal plants, a quantity that not only seriously threatened the environment but also human health.
“The Health Ministry should be competent on such issues that directly threaten public health and become a decision-making institution regarding the planning, the permission and monitoring processes in such projects,” said Pınar Aksoğan, head of Greenpeace’s Climate and Energy campaign, stressing that every 10 coal plants meant 476 premature deaths.
Aksoğan also called for the cancelation of a new thermal plant project planned in the area, denouncing the tricks put in practice by companies with environmental impact assessments reports (ÇED) to bypass ecological restrictions.
The group of activists also demanded that officials take into account the cumulative effects of the plants, and not solely the new plants slated to be built in a certain area.
Greenpeace activists were briefly detained during a demonstration against coal power plants in the Black Sea province of Zonguldak.
Dozens of coal and hydroelectric power plants are being built across the country to meet the rising demand for energy, while mostly disregarding the effects on the environment as many construction companies are also reaping the massive benefits of the energy boom.