skip to Main Content
New Saros Port Receives Environmental Challenge

New Saros port receives environmental challenge

Istanbul, Turkey (PortSEurope) July 28, 2020 – Earlier this month, BOTAŞ Petroleum Pipeline Corporation (BOTAS), the state-owned crude oil and natural gas pipelines and trading company, issued a tender for the construction of a dock, measuring station and transit pipeline for a new FSRU LNG import terminal on the Gulf of Saros. Its proposed location is between the villages of SazlıDere and Gökçetepe in Keşan district,
Edirne Province, a western Turkish province located in East Thrace, in the westernmost part of the country. However, lawyers for environmental protest groups have submitted a list of 40 objections to the construction based on concerns about the effects on the environment. It was emphasized that the underwater life and the structure of the coastal sands of the port planned to be made in the published list will negatively affect the fishing economy. The objections listed are: The entrance of the 100 DWT and 350-400 mt vessels to the Gulf of Saros will bring the pressure the seabed structure, sea life and the structure of the coastal sand will be negatively affected by the waves it will create.Fisheries and the associated fishing economy will be seriously damaged as a result of the entry of such vessels into the gulf and the pollution they will cause.The ecosystem will face a serious risk of damage during and after the construction in Saros Bay. As a result, many species of plants and animals living in the bay will face extinction.With hundreds of meters of chain, each with a link of 100 kg and anchors of 4-5 tons, it will damage the seabed flora and fauna at every anchoring and anchoring. Natural reefs, where fish nest, will disappear.The region is a first-order fault line, the risk of an earthquake is very high, in such a case the explosion risk that may occur in the facility may cause serious loss of life and cause irreversible damage to the environment.Any negligence that may occur during the fuelling of the ships may lead to serious explosions and as a result, loss of lives and irreversible damage to the environment.Diving activities in the region will face the risk of serious damage, as a result of which diving tourism will be negatively affected.Although the region has been declared as a “Culture and Tourism Protection and Development Zone”, it will actually “exit” the tourism zone and become an “energy industry zone”.In 10-15 years, the region’s world heritage natural beauty will disappear and you will face the risk of turning it into the Gulf of Izmit.Due to the (small) ecosystem of the gulf, accidents that may occur in the gulf, will have much higher levels of irreversible damage will occur compared to the open seas, and the gulf will not be able to “clean” itself.Fishing and tourism will be significantly damaged in the gulf as a result of the risk of ships leaving bilge waters in the gulf.The ships will discharge the balance waters they have filled from different seas into the bay, the wastewater they have washed from the cargo tanks into the bay, which will cause the hybridization of the bay water and pollution, which will lead to the formation of harmful marine species and disrupt to its ecosystem.Solid wastes to be thrown from the ships will cause significant pollution on land.There will be a large amount of logging at the points where the pipelines will pass.The structure of the lands where the pipeline will pass will deteriorate, and serious risks will arise in terms of agricultural efficiency.Pollution due to neglect and accidents that may occur during and after construction will damage the ecosystem in the region and seriously damage the productivity of these agricultural areas.Yield and agricultural areas of the region among Turkey’s top quality agricultural land will be damaged severely in terms of quality and quantity.In Saros, which is the most important point for sea tourism in Istanbul and Thrace, there will be the risk of losing the right to enter the clean sea and serious losses in the tourism economy of the region.The right to life of many living species in the region will be eliminated and the quality of life will be under serious threat.The transportation of many activities, including the ship sector or other areas of the energy sector, refinery and ship dismantling, will be paved.There will be serious pollution in the gulf and serious destruction in ecology in ship accidents to be experienced in winter conditions, as the giant cargo ships, which will arrive for 12 months, are stranded in shallow gulf waters.Saros Bay is the 1st Degree Earthquake Zone. Saros Bay is on active fault line. It is clear that the port and pipeline will be damaged in a possible earthquake and therefore will damage the Saros Bay.No waste management plan has been prepared for the project.The cumulative impact of the project on Saros Bay has not been evaluated.White products from two of the transfer pipelines (products such as gasoline, kerosene and diesel oil obtained from the refining of high-gravity oil) will leak.Dust and carbon monoxide, which will be formed by truck traffic (5,000 – 5,500 times) for 85,000 m³ of filling area, will be absorbed by plants, damaging the fertilization of plants, useful species, and as a result, agricultural productivity may be impaired.The traffic generated by 100 DWT tonnes and 350-400 mt ships will create serious visual pollution.As a result of the operation of the facility, significant noise pollution will occur in the environment.In the leaks and leakages that will occur, the air quality of the environment close to perfect will be significantly damaged.There is a high probability that there will be a fortress and archaeological remains from the Genoese around the area where the port construction will take place. If a port is built here, this world heritage will be greatly damaged or lost.This region is a very special habitat, the formation of which has been going on for millions of years. It is one of the three self-cleaning bays in the world. Planning an energy storage facility here is a great threat to this world heritage.The pollution that the project will create in sea creatures, agricultural products will pass to the people through the food chain, and as a result, the risk of putting the health of the people of the region under serious threat will arise.Saros Bay Special Environmental Protection Area Management Plan was prepared and approved by the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization General Directorate of Protection of Natural Assets on 22.01.2018. Despite this plan of the Ministry, an energy storage facility should not be built in the region.Damages that may occur in the ecosystem and environment due to pollution will adversely affect the livestock and related economy in the region.The tourism economy of the region will be seriously damaged as a result of the image, sound, air and sea pollution that may occur, and as a result, many people will lose their livelihoods.Total losses will create a significant migration risk in the region, and the region, which has a productive structure, will lose this feature.Saros is a bay with the biggest treasure of which is clear and clean water, where no industrial waste is present. This project carries risks that may be the beginning of the end for this virgin area.Our clean sea, which has been proven by many researches on human health, and our right to swim in it will be lost by the risks of pollution created by this facility.The natural protection park located 3.5 km from the property will be under serious threat with the construction of this facility.As a world heritage, this virgin and many experts, who remained to us from our ancestors, should not be built here to leave the natural wonder region to our children in the same way. Copyright (C) PortSEurope. All Rights Reserved. 2020.

To continue reading please subscribe or log in.

PortSEurope offers an English-language daily coverage from over 200 ports in the Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas as well as a fully indexed and easily searchable database with more than 15,000 articles.

Subscribe now
Back To Top