Turkish Cabinet issues urgent expropriation decision to build new hydroelectric and wind power plants
ANKARA – Doğan News Agency
This picture shows the Alakır river in the southern Antalya province, along which four hydorelectric plants have already been constructed. Four others are planned to be built, despite public protests, but they may now be in limbo after a recent court ruling changed the river's status to a protected natural area. DHA PhotoThe Cabinet has issued an urgent expropriation decision for the construction of 11 new energy facilities across Turkey, including a number of hydroelectric plants (HES), which are particularly controversial due to the environmental damage they cause.
The decision published in the Official Gazette on July 2 gives the Finance Ministry full powers to seek the expropriation to boost the new facility constructions. Those sites include the Onur HES in Tokat and the Saf II HES in Bingöl, two provinces where hydroelectric plants have multiplied.
The sites of three wind power plants in İzmir, Mersin and Gaziantep provinces are also included in the list, as well as several electricity distribution lines.
Urgent expropriation decisions regularly adopted by the Cabinet have long been decried by environmental groups, who claim that legally such measures should only be taken when there is a “threat to the national security.” They also argue that such Cabinet decisions are used as a way to bypass Parliament in order to complete business deals.