Respondent: Republic of Turkey Ministry for Environment and Urban Planning & Project Manager Prof. Dr. Hayri Duman


14 scientists prepared a ”scientific” report which will bring about the complete devastation of the unique forests, the pristine bays, and the blue seas of Muğla. We call upon the scientists mentioned below and the Ministry of Environment and Urban Planning to listen to our plea.

Dear academicians and technical experts. Are you aware that your names are about to go down in history as the individuals responsible for irreparable damage of nature on a scale that until now has never be seen in Turkey.

While it is still possible, we ask you to withdraw your signatures from this  proposal of the most devastating damage to  Turkey’s natural heritage ever!

  1. Project Reporter-Biologist Nilay Aygüney (Kiana Biological & Environmental Consulting),
  2. Project Reporter-Geographic Information Systems Expert Umut Cırık (CRK Planning),
  3. Topographical Engineer Kadir Genel,
  4. Landscape Architect Alper Venedik,
  5. Geology Lecturer Dr.Hakan Nefeslioğlu (Akdeniz University),
  6. Marine Biologist Assistant Lecturer Dr.Cevher Özeren (Ankara University)
  7. Marine Biologist Prof.Dr.Murat Bilecenoğlu (Adnan Menderes University)
  8. Ornithologist Prof.Dr.Zafer Ayaş (Hacettepe University),
  9. Herpetologist Prof. Dr. Yusuf Kumlutaş  (Ninth of September University  DEU)
  10. Mammal Scientist Prof.Dr.Abdullah Hasbenli (Gazi University),
  11. Biologist Prof.Dr.Murat Ekici (Gazi University)
  12. Invertebrate Scientist Prof.Dr. Selma Seven Çalışkan (Gazi University),
  13. Biologist-Ecologist Prof.Dr.Selim Sualp Çağlar (Hacettepe University),
  14. Project Manager – Ecologist Prof.Dr.Hayri Duman (Gazi University)

We are convinced of your good intentions. But be aware that you have signed a death warrant of the biggest natural life and landscape heritage of Turkey.

Withdraw your signatures from the “2016/12 Scientifical Report of a 4 Season Ecologically Based Research”

We also urge the Ministry for Environment and Urban Planning to show consideration for the apprehension and call upon them to heed  the suggestions of the public on this subject.  We urge them to  stop all activities related to the   “2016/12 Scientifical Report of 4 Season Ecologically Based Research”: We call on you to help us make a mutual ecologically based integrated management plan  with the  participation of the local people and the local management bodies and government.

What will Happen if this Project is Realized

All territories in the areas within the  Specially Protected Nature Territories (SPNT), were until very recently sites that fell under first-category protected areas. After a survey of only  14 persons these territories have been defined as second- or third-category protected areas. This means these areas are now open to ‘sustainable tourism’ , or have been left without any nature protection at all.

If this report is to be accepted, a revision of the SPNT areas and accordingly environmental and development plans will consequently have to be revised.  This unique natural heritage will be destroyed for ever.

Almost 75% of Gökova, 77% of the protected areas of Bodrum, Karaada and Kissebükü will be opened up to construction.  Almost half of the Peninsula of Datça and the Gulf of Hisarönü, the whole coast and all the hills facing the Gulf of Gökova and furthermore the coast and islands around Göcek near Fethiye; places which boast being among the top 10 destinations in Turkey’s tourism brochures –  the coast of Ölüdeniz and Butterfly Valley.  Our rich natural heritage will be left to the mercy of the concrete trucks and building sector.

If this happens local and economically sustainable sectors like the Blue Voyage tours, Nature Excursions, Horticulture, Olive culture, Natural Agriculture, or Beekeeping will disappear.

Ten Thousands of Pages of Scientific Reports Exist Already

The  “Scientific Report of a 4- Season Ecologically Based Research”, signed at the end of 2016 by 10 university professors and 4 technical experts is taken as base for the devastation that is proposed.  Public administrators and politicians will, without any scruples be able to say “look, this report is prepared by scientists”.

But we say:

– All these territories are registered in the UN inventories of protected natural areas.

– With this amendment in the categories of nature protection, International  conventions signed by ministers, and the regulations for “Specially Protected Nature Territories”, which are ratified by decree by the Council of Ministers, will be de facto ignored.

– We have  in our hands hundreds of reports for the proposed protection of the areas, areas that are being proposed to be covered in concrete.

– Ten thousands of pages of scientific reports tell about the unique reserves of natural life and the richness of the landscapes of these areas, where it is planned to pour concrete.

– There are international research reports that stress that these areas possess the most rich and diverse natural life, typical for the Mediterranean region.

– This magnificent natural heritage is a fundamental component of Turkey’s Tourism Industry, its’ prosperity and richness.

– The Ministry for Environment and Urban Planning prepared a “scientific report” titled “An Ecologically Based Scientifical Research Project for the Natural Site Territories” in order to re-regulate categories, protection levels and borders of the Natural Site Territories. These reports have been prepared for 20 different regions in Turkey. The first reaction came from Muğla, followed by Ayvalık.

If this project is realised  50.000 acres of territory on Muğla’s coasts, its unique forests, its pristine bays and nature friendly villages will be opened up to touristic construction, and 550.000 acres of natural heritage as so-called “touristic facilities for day-use” will be covered in concrete.


Thank you for the translation, Eren Levendoğlu


MUÇEP (Muğla Environmental Platform)

email: muglacevreplatformu@gmail.com

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