Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
Working under the Ministry of the Agriculture and Forestry, there are main governmental agencies responsible for development of water resources all over Turkey. In terms of water resources, we consider two main problems in Turkey: Flood and Drought. These natural disasters can result in social and economic damages. Scientific studies point out that as a result of the global warming and climate change, water related natural disasters experienced in many countries have been occurring more destructive with larger scales than those happened in the past. Impacts of global warming and climate change have been intensified with each passing day in the world and in our region. These conditions add to the weight of water administration in the semiarid zones in which Turkey is located as well.
Turkey has made significant dams in their classes like the Muratlı Dam, Borçka Dam, Artvin Deriner Dam, Ermenek Dam, Çine Adnan Menderes Dam, Dalaman Akköprü Dam and Kığı Dam during the last 15 years. Upon completion, the Ilısu Dam and Hydroelectric Power Plant will be the second largest in terms of dam body volume in Turkey. The Yusufeli Dam and HEPP Project is the highest dam of Turkey and the third highest dam of the world with its 275m high and it will be completed in 2019.
461 small dams were completed in 57 years between 1954 to the end of 2011 and “ 1000 small dams in 1000 days” project was also completed successfully in between 2012 - 2014. After that, “1071 lake-water project” has been started as a second part of this project and its facilities will be completed by the end of 2019. Drinking water supply issues of all cities of Turkey mainly in İstanbul, Ankara İzmir, Bursa, Mersin, Erzurum, Şanlıurfa, Diyarbakır and Mardin have been solved with long-term projects. The Drinking water demand of all cities of Turkey has been planned up to 2040, 2050 even 2071 with “the drinking water supply action plans”. 42 million citizens have been supplied additional drinking water by 207 new plants which started to operation in between 2003-2017.
Our Ministry and other related organizations have accomplished a great deal towards completing facilities mitigating the adverse effects of flood and drought disasters. I would like our national organizations to continue on achievements and efforts for this challenge. We also try to discuss water resources problems in conferences, congresses and symposiums. This international symposium and exhibition is one of the important events to discuss our water problems with neighboring countries. We think that special technical sessions will be presented on large dam projects, which have been completed or under construction now in Turkey and other countries.
The purpose of this symposium is to provide opportunity for the dam safety community to share important information, lessons learned and new technology.
We cordially invite you and your family members to Istanbul and wish you many stimulating professional and personal experiences.
Have a great symposium!
Dr. Bekir PAKDEMİRLİ
Minister of the Agriculture and Forestry