Türkiye: growing construction boom endangers forests

Türkiye: still growing construction boom endangers forests

In a recently published statistic and statement on the development of forest stocks in Turkey, the Global Forest Watch institute came up with worrying figures - since 2000 around 164,000 hectares of forest have disappeared.

If you take a closer look at the statistics, the numbers still need to be put into perspective. Global Forest Watch (GFW) states that as a result 342,000 hectares of forest area have been lost in the last 12 years, of which around 178,000 hectares were replanted through reforestation measures in the same period. The loss of natural forest areas has a very strong influence on the global climate, which is why every forest area should be replaced by new planting. The principle of sustainable forestry, which is already practiced in many countries, should also be implemented in Turkey.

Unfortunately, an important part of Istanbul's water reserves was found

abholzung 3The GFW sees the unplanned growth of cities with the associated buildings for the infrastructure as the main reason for the immense loss of forest areas. We have already reported several times on the mammoth projects in the Istanbul boom region, where large areas of forest have to give way to large-scale construction projects, just mentioning the third Bosphorus bridge, the third major airport or the Istanbul Canal project. This is how Dr. Cağan Şekercioğlu, Professor of Biology at the University of Utah in the USA. "Unfortunately, an important part of Istanbul's water reserves was found in the forest destroyed by constructions of the Third City Bridge, Third Airport and Istanbul Canal Project."

Anatolian province of Kayseri is used as a comparison

The GFW, which was once founded by the World Resources Institute (WRI), also sees the ongoing development of tourism infrastructure as responsible for the loss of forest areas. As an online mapping platform, the GFW is able to provide real-time monitoring of forests around the world. The statistics clearly state that the largest area losses have taken place in the provinces of Istanbul and Antalya. In order to get a better idea of the area of forest loss, the size of the central Anatolian province of Kayseri is used as a comparison.

abholzung 2Just a few days ago, an investigation made it clear that the loss of forests is also leading to severe soil erosion in Turkey, which ultimately also destroys the gigantic dam projects for river and area irrigation in eastern Anatolia. Severe soil erosion along the dams causes the soil in the dams to rise extremely, which contributes significantly to the reduction in the water capacity of the dams. Attempts are now being made to reduce this soil erosion by reforesting along the banks.

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