Only 32 out of 3,309 projects rejected on environmental grounds in 11 years
Erdinç Çelikkan HÜRRİYET / ANKARA
The construction of the roads connecting to Istanbul's third bridge continued despite the rejection of the initial environmental impact assessment report.A mere 32 out of 3,309 applications for a positive environmental impact assessment reports (ÇED) have been rejected since 1993, according to the figures by the Environment Ministry figures.
This assessment signals that achieving authorization for investments is not a difficult task.
The Turkish state has demanded ÇEDs for investments that might affect nature since 1993. However, with an additional code, the government has bypassed the requirement for some giant projects, such as the third bridge over the Bosphorus, a large Istanbul airport and nuclear plants.
As the law is binding for many other rather smaller projects, the recent approvals by the ministry came under spot light. The much criticized hydro-electric plants (HES) sit at the heart of the debate. The before and after photos of a HES construction in the western province of Erzurum has also drawn great reaction and criticism.
The ministry’s staff is not enough for routine inspections on projects within the ÇED report scope, sources close to the matter have said. “Thus, companies might sometimes ignore their responsibilities in the ÇED reports,” according to one source.
Fines on ÇED violations are also not common, the source said.