The applicants, as sixteen environmental NGOs, before filing the case at hand, made an application before the Presidency of the Republic of Turkey, requesting the annulment of the licenses of thirty-seven active coal thermal power plants in Turkey. The basis for this application is the scientific reports stating that the pandemics such as the recent coronavirus pandemic is a result of global climate change. Accordingly, it is alleged that the coal mines and thermal power plants play a leading role for climate change and therefore, their activities must be terminated. The Presidency of the Republic of Türkiye didn’t respond to this application in sixty days, which is deemed as a tacit rejection under Administrative Judicial Procedure Act. The applicants filed the case at hand in December 2020 and requested the annulment of the tacit rejection of the Presidency.
Presidency of Republic of Türkiye stated in its defense, the authority to annul the license for the power plants belongs to the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change and Energy Market Regulatory Authority. Energy Market Regulatory Authority, in its defense, referred that the relevant authority for environmental assessments is the Ministry of Environment, Urbanization and Climate Change. Finally, the Ministry alleged that there is no scientific proof on the relationship between climate change, pandemics and coal power plants.
The Court rejected the case depending on (1) that the allegations made by the claimants does not constitute a legal ground for the annulment of the license of the power plant and (2) the claimants haven’t initiated any legal procedures against the production license, environmental assessment report and the documents on environmental permitting and license. In its decision dated 28 March 2022, The Court also stated that the license which has been granted in accordance with the legal regulations cannot be annulled upon abstract grounds and therefore the tacit rejection by the Presidency cannot be deemed illegal.
The case has been brought before the Regional Administrative Courts by the Claimants for appeal and on February 2023, this appeal has been rejected on the ground that the decision given by 11th Administrative Court of Ankara is found to be lawful. Applicants are now preparing to bring the case before Court of Cassation.
No case documents are available.