Alakır Valley Key Biodiversity Area in Turkey saved from hydropower development

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The high court of Turkey stopped all hydropower projects in Alakır Valley, at the heart of the Bey Mountains Important Bird Area and Key Biodiversity Area in Antalya. The court concluded that the area shall be declared as a protected area for its outstanding value for freshwater and terrestrial biodiversity. Doğa, BirdLife Turkey, has been supporting the local Alakır River Fellowship for more than five years for their legal defense to save this intact river.

Alakır Valley is located in the Bey Mountains Key Biodiversity Area and hosts outstanding diversity of freshwater and terrestrial biodiversity. A new salmon species, Alakır salmon (Salmo kottelai) has recently been discovered in the area endemic to this small river basin. The valley constitutes also a possible range of the Brown Fish Owl (Ketupa zeylonensis) of the Taurus Mountains listed critically endangered at the European scale according to BirdLife International. Furthermore, great variety of restricted range and threatened plants grow in limestone and serpentine rocks of the river basin.

Chairwoman of Doğa, Dicle Kilic stated that, “This outstanding decision of High Court of Turkey is a result of immense efforts Alakır River Fellowship lasting for more than five years now. Doğa has been one of the supporters of this long lasting defense since it has started and it is great to see that we are firmly approaching the final result which is Alakır Valley becoming a natural protected area. We expect that the regional nature conservation council of Antalya immediately acts on this decision of the court and declares Alakır Valley as a protected area as it deserves.”

For more information:
Burak Özkırlı
burak.ozkirli@dogadernegi.org

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