THE MAJOR PROJECTS İZMİR METROPOLITAN MUNICIPALITY CONDUCTS WITHIN THE SCOPE OF “THE STRUGGLE WITH CLIMATE CHANGE”
One of the two EU grant projects our municipality conducts receives grant within the context of the project “The Capacity Building in the Field of Climate Change in Turkey Grant Scheme”, the beneficiary institution of which is the Ministry of Environment and Urbanisation and the contracting authority of which is the Central Finance and Contracting Unit. The "Green Re-vision: A Framework for the Resilient Cities" Project aims to create a resilient urban area within the context of climate change by using, enhancing and supporting the potential of green infrastructure. The objectives of project are to develop a framework, which toughens the city against climate change, to increase and develop the technical capacity, to develop the capacities of target groups and partners regarding climate change action and to increase social awareness about climate change by spreading knowledge and experience.
Within the context of the project conducted together with İzmir Metropolitan Municipality and Landscape Research Society which gained the right to receive a grant of 150 thousand and 386 Euros from European Union, the studies carried out were the formation of İzmir’s climate model, mapping of the green infrastructure system in Balçova, which is chosen as pilot area, the designation of temporal urban development and the calculation and mapping of regulatory ecosystem services provided by the green infrastructure. Considering the information and experiences gained as a result of all these activities, a green infrastructure and ecosystem services guide is prepared so that our city adapts and is resistant to climate change. The aim is to render the guide concerned a loadstar in other applications to be performed in our city.
The other project supported within the context of Horizion 2020 program of European Union is URBAN GreenUP project. A group of partners from Europe and from regions other than Europe, aims to increase the sustainability of cities through decreasing the effects of climate change, changing the quality of weather, developing water management and at the same time innovational, nature based solutions.
Within the context of United Nations Environment Programme- Mediterranean Action Plan, İzmir Metropolitan Municipality won the “İstanbul Environment Friendly City Award”, first given in 2017 and planned to be given bi-yearly with the aim of learning about the struggles of cities by the Mediterranean to improve their quality of environment and life and encouraging their sustainable development.
Being highly sensitive in terms of sustainability and environment, İzmir has carried out exemplary investmentsin this area and has been applying policies considering the future in terms of adapting to climate change and decreasing its effects throughout the whole city. İzmir became a party to the Covenant of Mayors-CoM contract in 2015 so as to support the endeavours of local authorities in carrying out some studies within the context of these projects and in the implementation of sustainable energy policies and made a commitment to decrease the greenhouse gas emission by %20 until 2020; over 7.700 municipalities in the world and only 11 municipalities in Turkey had become a party to this contract.
Studies on “Increasing Total Productivity Through the Integration of Rail System and Other Systems in Public Transportation” are pursued so as to increase energy efficiency and decrease carbon emission in transportation. The total length of the rail system line has reached to 180 kilometres with the Karşıyaka and Konak tramways coming into use. Within the context of this act, a decrease of 125 thousand tons of CO2 is aimed at until 2020. The “Fully Adaptive Traffic System” built for a smart, environment friendly and disabled-friendly urban transportation was first implemented by İzmir Metropolitan Municipality in Turkey. İzmir Transportation Center (İZUM) where all the main arterial roads of İzmir are kept under control and inspection, was materialized in 2017. A reduction of 251 thousand tons of CO2e is aimed at by the year 2020, with the system which comprisestens of features such as intelligent cross-roads, traffic monitoring cameras and measurement, monitoring, violation detection systems and speed corridors.
Regarding the renewable energy implementations, two thousand tons of treatment sludge in Menderes River Basin Wastewater Treatment Facility is dried with solar energy and the usage of fossil fuels such as natural gas and coal is prevented. The tender of biogas facility, which has 15 MW of energy production capacity, was secured and works were begun; the facility was planned to be established with the aim of the rehabilitation of Harmandalı Sanitary Landfill and the production of electric energy from garbage. Thus, when the necessary investments and preparations are finished in Harmandalı, the aim is to prevent the emission of a vast amount of methane into the atmosphere with the high greenhouse gas multiplier effect and to obtain renewable energy from the collected landfill gas.
Studies to establish Photovoltaic Power Plants (PVPP) with roof applications are carried out, putting to good use the unused spaces of our municipality and communions starting from their present buildings and parking areas. The Photovoltaic Power Plants built on the roofs of the atelier buildings of ESHOT in Buca and on the roof of the multipurpose sport complex and at the parking areas in Ekrem Akurgal Life Park in Bayraklı, have started producing electricity. Construction of Seyrek Dog Shelter is currently underway and planning to finish in March. Besides, studies regarding the application of five PVPP intended for municipality units are pursued.
İzmir Metropolitan Municipality was not only granded the “Environment and Sustainable Development” prize given by UITP, but also the first prize in the “Healthy Environment” category of the 2018 Best Practice Competition of Turkish Healthy Cities Association. The 20 electric buses that were engaged last year in April have transported 5 million passengers so far. In this way, the usage of 784 thousand litres of diesel fuel was prevented and 81 percent saving was provided per kilometrein comparison to diesel-powered vehicles. Thus, 2 thousand 103 tons of carbon dioxide emissions were prevented. The 10 thousand square meters of photovoltaic power plant established on the roofs of ESHOT ateliers for the energy of these buses was the first project in Turkey in this area.
A Solar Sludge Drying Facility was established in Menderes, to be able to dry the sludge extracted from wastewater treatment facilities using solar energy. Thanks to the facility, it was possible to dry the sludge using solar energy and prevent the emission of thousands of tons of carbon dioxide using renewable energy.
Çiğli Sludge Digestion and Drying Facility was put into service in İzmir. A protocol was signed among the facility and two cement plants and the usage of treatment sludges as additional fuel in cement production was provided. With the usage of biogas instead of natural gas in sludge drying operation, thanks to the cooperation of İzmir Metropolitan Municipality and cement plants, the emission of thousands of tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere was prevented.
İZSU, which started planting works in Tahtalı Basin in 2001, in order to be able to protect the Tahtalı Dam and Basin and enlarge the lungs of the city, planted one million and 70 thousand saplings in an area of 640 hectares with the perpetuation of green mobilization. İZSU aims to prolong its economic life through keeping İzmir’s principal drinking water resource safe from both erosion and contamination with the planting works realised in Tahtalı Dam basin.
Besides, a stream bed was formed again two meters down the roads in Gültepe, with an investment of 30.8 million and thanks to this line, rain water reached Meles. Studies on a “second line” were begun to separate wastewater from rainwater lines, so as to facilitate İZSU Combined System’s work, which had more and more difficulty in carrying the burden of increasing population. İZSU has made an investment of 175 million Turkish Liras only for the rainwater infrastructure construction in all the districts in the last four years and has made a rainwater line of 286 kilometres. As for the length of the rainwater line formed between the years 2004 and 2019, it reached 506 kilometres.
Within the context of consciousness raising studies, the education project themed “Global Warming, Renewable Energy Resources and Energy Efficiency” which was begun in order to illuminate the public and to raise an awareness on topics such as usage of renewable energy resources, protection of the environment, climate change, conscious energy use and energy efficiency has been going on since 2015. 25,000 students were educated in the context of trainings provided for the fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth grade students in 30 districts of İzmir.
For a healthy life, transportation and a clean environment in İzmir, the usage of bicycles has become widespread, thanks to BİSİM “bicycle for rent” system, which İzmir Metropolitan Municipality put into service. BİSİM, which began to provide service in January 2014, reached 1 million and 622 thousand users at the end of the year 2018, with 60 kilometres of bicycle road.