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News from Turkish DOSAB coal plant planned to be built in Bursa

With a population of 2.8 million, Bursa is the fourth biggest city of Turkey, and one of the most important industrial cities of the country. A coal plant is being planned in an area with close human settlements which would impact health and the environment.

The management body of Demirtas Organised Industrial Zone (DOSAB) plans to build a coal-fired plant with a 49.9 MW installed capacity to power the factories in the zone. Yet, hundred thousands of people live in the vicinity, with human settlements as close as 750 m to the planned facility. In addition, air pollution exceeds WHO recommendations and the limits of Turkish law.

During the last three years, the platform against the DOSAB thermal power plant, has been watching the plant project closely. Consisting of more than 100 organisations, environmental NGOs, professional organisations such as the city bar, chambers of engineers and the chamber of medicine, as well as political parties, the Platform’s impressive coalition and collaborative work is starting to make a difference.

In May 2016 with the great efforts of the Platform, the EIA Report for the Bursa project was initially cancelled following a local court decision. However, a second EIA report was submitted in July 2016. In August, HEAL sent a joint letter to express objections to the Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation with several other NGOs including the Turkish Medical Association, Society of Public Health Specialists, Turkish Thoracic Society, Greenpeace- Mediterranean, Green Thought Foundation and Yuva Association.

Unfortunately in September, the report was accepted by the Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation despite the fact that 43.8 percent of the people interviewed in the report were against the project, especially regarding its environmental and health threats.

After the approval of the second EIA, the Platform continues with its legal advocacy supported by environment and health advocates working for a healthy energy future.

Originally posted on 27 September 2016

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