Protection of biodiversity and natural resources of Turkey

The Turkish Ministry of Forest and Water Affairs, an IUCN Member, carried out a project to protect the biodiversity and natural resources in the country funded by the Global Environment Facility.

Seal, Turkey Photo: Adem AGIR

The objectives of this project were to develop and implement sustainable protected area and natural resource management plans in four priority biodiversity conservation demonstration sites and buffer zones, and to build capacity at the national level for conservation management in Turkey. 

The project developed conservation management strategies adapted to local needs and conditions. Local communities and NGOs participated in the planning and implementation of the project, which focused primarily on buffer zone communities and stakeholders to bring about sustainable natural resource management and conservation of landraces and biodiversity in the production landscape. 

Investments training and institutional arrangements funded under the project addressed priority conservation planning and management issues which are common to many important and threatened biodiversity sites throughout Turkey and allow for replication throughout the country.

Building on the experience of a pilot phase protected area project in Eastern Europe, this project developed a new integrated approach to conservation of natural ecosystems and sustainable resource management. 

The main components of the project built on the experience in related existing and planned government, NGO and international initiatives, and included:

  • Preparation and implementation of protected area management plans

  • Sustainable natural resource management and buffer zone development

  • Local capacity building – within key government agencies and NGOs involved in project implementation at the field level

  • Capacity building at the national level
  • Public awareness and education.

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