Last hearing was yesterday
After being adjourned for the sixth time so far, the latest hearing of the case brought against the landowners in Çeşme to expropriate their lands and hand their properties over to the government, which began in January 2014, was held yesterday. The cabinet decision for ‘Urgent Expropriation’ for energy related projects requires that the Energy Market Regulatory Authority enforce the policy through local courts by way of opening cases to determine the value to be paid to existing landowners and to finalize the transfer of the deeds to the Turkish treasury. Only after this process is finalized can the state appropriate the newly expropriated lands to feasible and approved energy projects.
In response to these actions, land and property owners in Çeşme have launched their own counter cases, within the legally allowed time frame and in accord with due process, to protect their rights, the environment, and the future of Çeşme from the disaster that is about to hit the beautiful tourism center of the Aegean region.
Since the first cases of January, the Danıştay, which is the Council of State and Turkey’s highest court, has ordered a Stay of Execution about the cabinet’s ‘Urgent Expropriation’ policy regarding the Wind Power Projects in Çeşme. In addition, annulment cases for the expropriation of the lands as well as the local development of the project have been dealt separate Stays of Execution orders by the administrative courts. On going are also cases brought against the developers with regards to the annulment and cancellation of their production licenses, as well as the case that the Environmental Impact Assessment (ÇED Report) be waived for their project.
During this time, the developers production license, a prime requirement for any developer wishing to engage in such projects, has effectively become legally null and void, and the deadline for the waiver of the Environmental Impact Assessment study has also long passed. In spite of all of this, the project planned on 1st and 2nd degree protected natural habitat land, which normally is not possible to build anything on, let alone a massive power generating wind plant project, continues to be constructed with total disregard for the cumulative effects of itself and numerous other similar neighboring projects on the delicate habitat. With clearly no benefit to the local population, the project also violates another characteristic requirement found in other similar urgent expropriation sourced projects; so much so, in fact, that construction activities are now well under way even in Çeşme’s small center.
Until the courts final verdict, the contested properties remain with the locals, making all activities on them illegal
Under these circumstances, the lands are still the private property of Çeşme’s locals. The developer, ABK Çeşme RES A.Ş., in spite of this precarious legal situation, continues to commit forced unlawful entry, trespass, and illegal construction activities on private properties, in full violation of the locals legal rights. EMRA, the regulatory authority in this matter, continues to fail to enforce the process of licence cancellation for the developer, and by way of this failure, the wind turbines are at a stage of being erected now, all under the supervision and direction of German based multinational firm Nordex SE.