Star Refinery Socar power station

From Global Energy Monitor

Star Refinery Socar power station is a proposed 672-megawatt (MW) coal-fired power plant in İzmir province, Turkey.

The 672MW project was called off in October 2016. A 520 MW coal plant was floated in 2018, but has been put on hold.


The undated satellite photo below shows the rough site of the proposed coal plant, near Aliağa city, Aliağa district, İzmir province. The Star Refinery is being built on the other side of the bluff, about a mile to the southeast of the coal plant's site.

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Background on Plant

Protesters at a hearing for the Socar Power-2 project in Aliağa in October 2013.[1]

In September 2008, Socar Turkey (a subsidiary of the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan) began work on the Star Refinery, a new oil refinery adjacent to the Petkim petrochemicals facility near Aliağa. The refinery is expected to be completed in 2017.[2]

In May 2012, Socar Power, a subsidiary of SOCAR, applied for final permits to build a coal-fired power plant about a mile away from the refinery site, to help power the refinery's operations. An environmental permitting hearing was held in Aliağa in April 2012. The plant would burn both coal and petroleum coke.[3][4][5] Socar Power hoped to bring the coal plant online simultaneously with the refinery, in 2017.[6]

In September 2013, SOCAR submitted an EIA for the coal plant.[7][8] In July 2013, an initial environmental permit from the Ministry of Environment and Urban Planning was issued. An environmental permitting hearing in Aliağa in October 2013 could not be held after 150-200 angry environmentalists showed up for a hearing in a room that could only hold 50 people.[9] In February 2014, a local court stayed the plant's EIA, ruling that the public hearing process had been insufficient.[1]

In January 2015 it was announced that the oil refinery project had raised US$3.29 billion in debt financing from seven export credit agencies (CESCE, Export Development Canada, the Export-Import Bank of the United States, JBIC, the Korea Trade Insurance Corporation, NEXI, and SACE) and 16 commercial banks.[10]

In October 2016 SOCAR’s management said it had decided not to pursue the coal power plant project. The project had been opposed by civil society groups for years over its environmental and health effects, and close proximity to the ancient city of Kyme.[11] As of December 2019 the project has not progressed in more than four years and appears to be cancelled.

2018 proposal for 4 x 130 MW plant

In September 2018 it was reported in Chinese media that a subsidiary of Power Construction Corporation of China, Shandong Electric Power Construction Corporation III or SEPCO III, is planning to sign a contract for the construction work of a captive power plant with Socar.[12] Later in September 2018 it was announced that Shandong had put the project on hold due to the country's unstable political situation.[13]


On October 22, 2013, environmentalists gathered in front of the District Governorship building in opposition to the Socar power plant in Aliava, Turkey. Environmentalists said it was wrong that the EIA (environmental impact assessment) meeting was only allowing around 50 people to enter, when there are many more individuals interested in hearing about the EIA. The environmentalists entered the building chanting, “We do not want a thermal power plant,” and “The wind and the sun are enough for us.” The meeting over the Socar power plant was not held, due to the public’s “intense reaction.”[14]

Since 2014, it was reported by Bankwatch that groups like the CEE Bankwatch Network and Re:common warned about the Socar power plant breaching Turkish legislation.[15]

In May 2016, environmentalists had opposed the “EIA positive report” around the Socar thermal power plant. They argued that the Court was wrong in declaring that the EIA was adequate and appropriate. Their appeal was denied by the Administrative Court in Turkey.[16]

By October 31, 2016, environmentalists were ecstatic over the plans to build the Socar power plant were shelved.[17]

Project Details

  • Sponsor: Socar Power
  • Parent company: State Oil Company of Azerbaijan (SOCAR)
  • Location: Aliağa city, Aliağa district, İzmir province, Turkey
  • Coordinates: 38.817, 26.9103 (exact)
  • Status: Cancelled
  • Detailed status:
  • Gross capacity: 672 MW
  • Type:
  • Projected in service:
  • Coal type:
  • Coal source: Imported (Russia, South America, South Africa)[7]
  • Source of financing: CESCE, Export Development Canada, the Export-Import Bank of the United States, JBIC, the Korea Trade Insurance Corporation, NEXI, and SACE

Articles and resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 Aliağa'daki petrokok yakıtlı termik santralin ÇED davasında “halkın katılımı” itirazı, Yeşil Gazete, Mar. 3, 2014.
  2. Star Refinery Inc., Socar Turkey website, accessed May 2014.
  3. Bir tane yetmiyor, ikincisi yapılıyor, Aliağa Ekspres, Apr. 16, 2012.
  4. Detaylar: Socar Power Termik Santralı, EPDK website, accessed May 2014.
  5. Environmental and Social Impact Assessment Study for Aegean Refinery (Star) Project, STAR Rafineri A.Ş., March 2013.
  6. Socar akaryakıtı Gür ile dağıtacak, Hürriyet, Feb. 17, 2013.
  7. 7.0 7.1 SOCAR'dan İzmir Aliağa'ya ikinci termik santral, Enerji Günlüğü, Sept. 26, 2013.
  9. Aliağa'da Termik'e Geçit Yok, Günaydın, Oct. 23, 2013.
  10. "STAR refinery attracts largest ECA-covered project financing in Turkey at US$3.29bn," TFR, 14 January 2015
  11. "Historic win for frontline communities: plans for coal power project in Turkey shelved," Bankwatch, Oct 31, 2016
  12. 最新|三项电力行业项目信息,, Sep. 13, 2018.
  13. The latest developments in the top 10 overseas projects such as the Zhongjian Zambian Road Project and the CLP Zimbabwe Power Plant Expansion Project, Sohu, Oct. 17, 2018
  14. “No Transition to Thermic in Aliava”, Gunaydin, Translated by Google, October 23, 2013.
  15. “Historic win for frontline communities: plans for coal power project in Turkey shelved”, CEE Bankwatch Network, October 31, 2016.
  16. “Appeal denied to Socar Thermal Power Plant in Aliaga”, Economic News Sozcu, May 9, 2016.
  17. “Historic win for frontline communities: plans for coal power project in Turkey shelved”, CEE Bankwatch Network, October 31, 2016.

Related articles

External resources