Turkey’s Great Leap Forward risks cultural and environmental bankruptcy

The Guardian reports:

Every springtime Pervin Çoban Savran takes her camels and sheep up into the Taurus mountains of southern Turkey, following the same routes along the Goksu river that Yoruk people like her have taken for more than 1,000 years. To many Turks these last nomadic tribes are symbols of the soul of their nation.

Their way of life – and that of millions of small farmers – is being threatened by Turkey’s Great Leap Forward, one of the most dramatic and potentially devastating rushes for economic development and prosperity Europe has seen in decades.

Thousands of dam and hydropower schemes are being built on almost all of the main rivers in a pharaonic push to make Turkey a world economic power by the centenary of the republic in 2023.

The ruling AK party, expected to win a record third term in next month’s elections, is forcing through a series of gigantic public works projects that include three nuclear power plants – despite Turkey being one of the most seismically active nations on earth.

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