Opposition to coal in Turkey

From Global Energy Monitor
This article is part of the CoalSwarm coverage of Turkey and coal.


Opposition to coal in Turkey

See also: "Citizen groups working on coal issues in Turkey" and How to Research a Proposed Coal Plant

Local Opposition to Coal Plants

2010: Residents protest Amasra Bartın power station

Residents of Bartın protest against the proposed Amasra Bartın power station in 2010.[1]

The proposal to build the Amasra Bartın plant and HEMA plant has faced significant public opposition, both in Amasra and in the provincial capital of Bartın, mainly on the grounds that pollution from the plant would hurt tourism and damage the local environment. Protests have been led by the Bartın Platform, created in April 2010, which has coordinated amongst many stakeholders in the region that are opposed to the plant. 10,000 residents of Bartın held a protest against the plant in April 2010, and later that year a petition against the plant collected 30,000 signatures. Public permitting meetings have also been disrupted by local residents.[2]

2011: Citizens protest the proposed Selena power station

A protest against the Selena power station project in Erzin in December 2011.[3]

In July 2009, the EPDK gave preliminary approval to Selena Elektrik (a subsidiary of Bendis Enerji) to build a two-unit, 900-MW coal-fired power plant in northwestern Hatay province. Selena Elektrik began the environmental regulatory application process in December 2009.[4]

A lengthy petition was sent to Turkey's General Assembly by the Yeşilkent Irrigation Cooperative and numerous residents of Aşağı Burnaz village in March 2011, detailing numerous complaints about the proposed project.[5] A public environmental hearing in July 2011 was met with protests, with local residents concerned about the proposed plant's effect on citrus agriculture, a mainstay of the local economy.[6] A street protest against the proposed plant was held in Erzin in December 2011, where locals expressed opposition not only to this project but also to the numerous other proposed coal-fired plants in Adana and Hatay provinces.[3][7] In June 2012, another local environmental permitting meeting was shut down by protests.[8] The final license was issued in August 2012.[9]

October 2012: Bursa power station

At a protest in Keleş against the proposed Bursa power station in October 2012, residents carried a banner reading, "We don't want the thermal power plant."

A protest in Keleş against the proposed Bursa coal plant in October 2012. "[10]

August 2013: Kireçlik power station

A protest against the proposed Kireçlik plant in August 2013

In November 2009, Hema Elektrik (a subsidiary of Hattat Holding) applied to build a two-unit, 1,200-MW coal-fired power plant in Zonguldak province.

The proposed 1200-MW Kireçlik power station has met with vigorous local protests, led by KDZ.Ereğli Çevre Platformu and Greenpeace, with a great deal of support from local political officials. A boat action in August 2013 attracted a great deal of media attention.[11]

In 2017 it was reported that the area proposed for the Kireçlik power station had been designated a tourism area, making it unsuitable for coal plants.[12]

December 2017: Eskişehir statues and tractors protests

Months of protests in 2017 and 2018 against the Alpu power station included rap music and a convoy of hundreds of tractors.[13] The mayor spoke out against the plant,[14] and in January 2018 the MP for the main opposition party joined a human chain formed in protest.[15] In summer 2018 protestors took to the Porsuk River[16] and in the election campaign the main opposition leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu spoke out against the plant.[17] Statues on city benches donned gas masks protesting against the proposed plant.

January 2018: DOSAB cogeneration plant protest

Members of the citizen group 'DOSAB Termik Santraline Hayır Platformu' gather in front of the Atatürk Monument in Bursa city to protest the plant, January 2018

Members of 'DOSAB Termik Santraline Hayır Platformu' (DOSAB Thermal Power Plant No Platform) wore masks over their faces at a demonstration in January 2018 to protest the DOSAB cogeneration plant.[18]

Sugozu power station

Opposition at Ports

Activists board one of the world's largest coal platforms at Botas Oil Terminal, stopping barges from importing coal to the Sugozu (Isken) coal fired power plant.

In September 2008, four climbers from Greenpeace's Rainbow Warrior were arrested after they occupied a giant coal loading platform to prevent a delivery of coal to this coal plant, which emits 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually.[19]

National Opposition

May 2017: Istanbul bank protest

KOS (Northern Forests Defence) protested against ING Bank funding of EÜAŞ.[20]

May 2017: Samsun Biking protest

TEMA supporters from around Turkey biked through Samsun to protest against coal-fired power stations planned to be built on some of the most fertile soils in the country.[21]

International Opposition

November 2017: UN Climate change conference COP23

TEMA spoke out against coal amongst protesters at the COP23 climate change conference in Bonn. [22]

Articles and resources


  1. Pearl of the Black Sea Coast Faces Threat from ‘Black Diamonds’, Today's Zaman, Apr. 8, 2012.
  2. Public Outcry in District of Amasra of Bartin Province on Black Sea Coast of Turkey, Energy News Turkey, Nov. 25, 2010.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Erzin termik santrala karşı sokakta, Yeşil Gazete, Dec. 14, 2011.
  4. Selena Elektrik Üretim A.Ş., Bendis Enerji website, accessed May 2014.
  5. Petition Committee General Assembly Resolution, Turkish National Assembly Resolution No. 48, Mar. 25, 2011.
  6. Erzin'de Termik Santrale Tepki, Bianet, Aug. 2, 2011.
  7. Bakanlık önündeki 'mandalinalı' eyleme CHP, MHP ve BDP'den destek, Haberdar, Dec. 14, 2011.
  8. Selena ÇED toplantısını yapamadı, Başak Gazetesi, June 6, 2012.
  9. Selena Kömür Santrali, Kara Atlas, accessed May 2014.
  10. Köylüler, Kozağacı Vadisi'ne kurulması planlanan termik santrali protesto etmek için yürüyüş düzenledi, Normatif, Oct. 21, 2012.
  11. Zonguldak'ta termik santral tepkisi, Internet Haber, Sept. 29, 2010.
  12. KİREÇLİK’TE İŞLER TIKIRINDA, Önder, Aug. 9, 2017.
  13. Turkey’s coal dependency triggers creative protest in Eskişehir, Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung, January 2018
  14. Büyükerşen: Termik santral Eskişehir için bir cinayettir, evrensel, December 2017
  15. Eskişehir’de kömürlü termik santrale karşı zincir oluşturuldu, Hürriyet, January 2018
  16. Eskişehir'de termik santral protestosu, Anadolu Gazetesi, 5 May 2018
  18. "Bursa'da çevrecilerden termik santral eylemi," Cumhuriyet, 27 January 2018
  19. "Coal shipment stopped in Turkey," Greenpeace International, September 15, 2008
  20. "ING Bank, kömürcü EÜAŞ’tan desteğini çek!" KOS Medya, May 10, 2017
  21. "Kömür santrallerine bisikletli protesto" Halk newspaper, May 27, 2017
  22. "COP23: Paris Anlaşması'nın kurallarını yazmak" DW, Nov 9, 2017

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