Is “Canal Istanbul” Compatible with the Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Climate Agreement?

30 Pages Posted: 18 Nov 2021 Last revised: 16 Feb 2022

See all articles by Ibrahim E. Sancak

Ibrahim E. Sancak

ZWIRN-Research Center/Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences; European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI)

Date Written: February 16, 2022

Abstract

This study analyzes the compatibility of the Canal Istanbul project with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Paris Climate Agreement (PCA). Turkey ratified the PCA in October 2021 and has committed to the SDGs since 2015. However, the government in Turkey strives to capitalize on a mega construction project in Istanbul by bulldozing the city’s natural habitat, fabricating an alternative strait, namely, “Canal Istanbul”, and building a city with luxury characteristics around it for the rich. The government has two separate aims with the project: to relieve traffic on the Bosporus Strait and generate economic gains. We show here that the implementation of the Canal Istanbul project breaches and undermines the PCA and contradicts 17 of 17 SDGs. In particular, the project conflicts with SDG 10 (reduced inequalities), SDG 11 (sustainable cities and communities), SDG 13 (climate action), SDG 14 (life below water), and SDG 15 (life on land).

Keywords: Biodiversity, climate change, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Istanbul, Paris Climate Agreement, sustainable development, Sustainable Development Goals, Turkey

JEL Classification: Q01, Q54, Q56, Q57, Q58

Suggested Citation

Sancak, Ibrahim E., Is “Canal Istanbul” Compatible with the Sustainable Development Goals and Paris Climate Agreement? (February 16, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3961813 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3961813

Ibrahim E. Sancak (Contact Author)

ZWIRN-Research Center/Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences ( email )

Germany

European Corporate Governance Institute (ECGI) ( email )

c/o the Royal Academies of Belgium
Rue Ducale 1 Hertogsstraat
1000 Brussels
Belgium

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