What Paris Deal? Turkey Plans 80 New Coal Plants

  • Date: 06/09/16
  • Arthur Neslen, The Guardian

Turkish coal plants are in line for eye-watering public subsidies and exemptions from environmental regulations, under an amended energy package delivered by the country’s parliament, late last week.

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Turkey is a member of the G20, whose two leading economies – the US and China – agreed to ratify the Paris climate change agreement on Saturday.

The G20 summit which ended in Hangzhou, China, yesterday also came under pressure to put a deadline to an old pledge to phase out fossil fuel subsidies.

But MPs and campaigners say that the new amendment known as Article 80 could instead open Turkey’s door to extraordinary largesse for the coal sector and other big energy projects, unfettered by environmental considerations.

Turkey plans to build as many as 80 new coal plants in the next few years, on top of 25 that already exist, belching an extra 200m tonnes of CO2 emissions into the atmosphere each year.

Under the new plan, any project deemed a “strategic investment” can be exempted from corporate taxes, tariffs, stoppages, and the duty to carry out environmental risk assessments, or even permitting applications.

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