Saros Gulf is under protection

01 Jan 2011

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A new Special Environmental Protection Area (SEPA) is added to Turkey’s existing 14 areas.

New Horizons - The cabinet’s decree published in the Official Gazette will place the Saros Gulf’s natural assets, historical and cultural resources, biological diversity and underwater and above water living organisms and nonliving things under protection and lead to the forming, revision and approval of development plans for the area.

The cabinet’s decision represents fulfillment of one of the commitments of the “Strengthening Protected Area Network of Turkey: Catalyzing Sustainability of Marine and Coastal Protected Areas” project where the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) is the implementing partner.

The project is conducted by The Environmental Protection Agency for Special Areas (EPASA) as the executing agency on behalf of Ministry of Environment and Forestry with the partnership of the General Directorate for Nature Conservation and National Parks and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs General Directorate of Protection and Control, under the financial support of Global Environment Facility (GEF).

In the scope of efforts concerning the Saros Gulf SEPA, EPASA representatives will visit the area to prepare an action plan to resolve shortcomings in terms of protection-development, environment and infrastructue needs and planning.

Gökova is also on the agenda

75 thousand hectares of the Gulf of Saros is now placed under EPASA management while the Gökova SEPA is further extended 50.000 hectares.

With the decree, the number of SEPAs in Turkey increased to 15, expanding the total area of the SEPAs to over 1 million hectares. The total coastline of SEPAs reached 195 kilometers while the marine and coastal protected areas reached over 270 thousand hectares.