Turkey’s ruling party preparing bill to fight mucilage in Marmara Sea

Türkiye Materials 17 April 2022 11:51 (UTC +04:00)
Turkey’s ruling party preparing bill to fight mucilage in Marmara Sea

Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is working on a bill to fight mucilage in the Marmara Sea that would require municipalities to construct dozens of advanced treatment facilities, Trend reports citing Hurriyet Daily News.

Mucilage, a thick and slimy substance made up of compounds released by marine organisms, surfaced on the Marmara Sea in May last year, and invaded a large area in June the same year, alarming marine biologists, environmentalists and eventually officials.

Thanks to the works, mucilage was brought under control to quite an extent.

Within the scope of the efforts to protect the Marmara Sea from the reemergence of mucilage, AKP lawmakers are drafting a bill that will require municipalities around the Marmara basin - including large and industrial provinces such as Istanbul, Kocaeli and Bursa - to build advanced biological wastewater treatment plants.

The ministry will consult with the Treasury and Finance Ministry before undertaking the projects.

According to the bill, the municipalities should present their projects regarding those treatment facilities within three to six months. If they fail to do so by the deadline, the Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Ministry will step in to assume the development of those treatment plants.

The bill foresees the construction of 50 to 60 advanced wastewater treatment facilities around the Marmara Sea.

Municipalities may finance the projects on their own or have the facilities constructed under the build-operate-transfer scheme.

The legislation regarding the fight against mucilage is expected to be submitted to the parliament speaker’s office in the coming days as part of an ominous bill.

In late November last year, Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change Minister Murat Kurum said that necessary actions would be taken, including implementation of the Strategic Plan, and added that those works would be completed in three years with a vision to end the mucilage problem in the Marmara Sea.