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Mersin Greenpeace files lawsuit against environmental report

6 January 2015

Greenpeace (Mersin) has filed a lawsuit against the Environmental Impact Assessment Report which green-lighted construction of a nuclear power plant, ‘Kibris Postasi’ reports.

On 3rd of December 2014, approval was given to build the highly controversial Akkuyu Nuclear Plant in Mersin, Turkey.

Speaking in front of the Mersin Administrative Court building, Mersin Greenpeace announced the filing of a lawsuit against the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (ÇED) for Akkuyu Nuclear Plant. Their press release stated that Mersin Greenpeace did not accept the ÇED report which approved the construction of the nuclear plant in Mersin.

Twenty members of Greenpeace opened a banner which read “Nuclear will harm Turkey”. Speaking to the press, Mersin Greenpeace drew attention to the potential risks of nuclear plants as well as the environmental hazards it will create during routine operations.

Greenpeace criticised the ÇED report for being “incomplete” and “insufficient” as it did not provide details on who would be responsible in case of an accident nor did it clarify what arrangements would be in place to dispose of nuclear waste.

“It is a mistake to go nuclear after what has happened in Japan,” Uygar Özesmi, Greenpeace’s Mediterranean director, ahead of the report being compiled. “In a quake-prone country like Turkey, you cannot launch a nuclear power industry”, Treehugger.com (2011) reported.

Energy Minister Taner Yıldız said that Turkey will use third-generation technology that will make its plants safer than the first-generation Fukushima facility. However, sceptics remain unconvinced.

“The Russian technology does not comply with Western standards, and Japanese companies have struggled to get licenses elsewhere. Both have design problems with their cooling systems,” said Hayrettin Kılıç, a nuclear physicist who campaigns against atomic power.

Turkey’s own industrial safety record does not inspire confidence either. Fatal accidents are common at its shipyards, as are deadly explosions and cave-ins at its mines.

Though critics admit that Turkey is heavily dependent on energy imports and struggling to meet growing demand, they say development of the country’s renewable energy potential could more than make up for not building nuclear power plants.

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