Union: Turkey needs to be on alert for drought

A recent research report released by the Water Rights Campaign has stated that some “crazy projects” being pursued by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in Istanbul, such as a third airport and Kanal Istanbul, will change the climate of the city and lead to serious water scarcity in the metropolis. The research report, titled “Istanbul’s water crisis and collective solutions,” was prepared by five academics — Dr Akgun Ilh

A recent research report released by the Water Rights Campaign has stated that some andldquocrazy projectsandrdquo being pursued by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in Istanbul, such as a third airport and Kanal Istanbul, will change the climate of the city and lead to serious water scarcity in the metropolis.

The research report, titled andldquoIstanbuland#39s water crisis and collective solutions,andrdquo was prepared by five academics — Dr Akganduumln Ilhan, Dursun YIldIz, Fatma ZiIan Tokaandccedil, Professor Mehmet Levent Kurnaz and Professor Murat TanduumlrkeI.

In their report, the academics warn that the AK Partyand#39s Istanbul projects such as the third bridge currently being constructed over the Bosporus, Kanal Istanbul — the new waterway which then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoIan referred to as his andldquocrazy projectandrdquo — and a planned third airport will cause changes in the cityand#39s land use, humidity, temperature and gas and energy flow, and will create new and additional sources of heat.

andldquoThe locations where these projects are being constructed or will be constructed will turn into urban heat islands,andrdquo states the report, adding: andldquoWhen the third bridge is completed, a total of 8,715 trees will have been cut down with the completion of the North Marmara Highway. Due to precipitation and traffic flow, exhaust fumes will pollute the nearby water reservoirs.

In particular, the pollution that will occur in the andOumlmerli Dam will seriously damage one of the most significant investments of the State Waterworks Authority [DSI], the Melen project.andrdquo

The Melen project includes the construction of a tunnel under the Bosporus that transports water to Istanbul from the Melen River via a pipeline.

The report also warned that pollutants such as lead, copper and zinc will emerge due to the third airport and these pollutants will contaminate the nearby Terkos Lake, which supplies drinking water to Istanbul, with heavy metals.

The same report also states that if the Kanal Istanbul project is implemented, the SazlIdere reservoir, which provides 67 percent of water being used daily in Istanbul, will be destroyed.

andldquoWith four separate new city projects that will be initiated on the European side of Istanbul, this will put groundwater resources from Silivri to Bekirli under serious risk,andrdquo the report also warns.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman