This article was written for Fethiye Times by Steve Parsley

Residents from a cluster of mountain villages north of Fethiye have been drawing up battle plans which they hope may foil fresh proposals for a stone quarry in the area.

Locals oppose plans for a stone quarry near Üzümlü
Photograph courtesy of Denise Atkins

An estimated 200 people from Incirköy and another 50 from Üzümlü attended meetings held recently to voice their concerns over the development, which aims to mine low-grade stone for building projects across the region.

Locals oppose plans for a stone quarry near Üzümlü
Photograph courtesy of Zeynep Ebru Aksoy

It’s understood the quarry already has permission which was granted without the need for an environmental impact assessment as the site which has been earmarked is too small.

A detrimental impact on the environment

Nevertheless, those who live and work in the area are worried the quarry will have a detrimental impact on olive groves as well as beehives in the area while some are predicting a loss of revenue from tourism and a decrease in property values.

A meeting in Üzümlü on Friday evening was told, to date, there has been little response to requests for further information about the quarry and its likely scope of operation, although the constitution allows those with objections to challenge the proposals through legal channels.However, if quarry operations are to cease, it would have to be through a specific order from the courts.

So far, 27 objections have been registered with the Notary, with more anticipated this week. Friday’s meeting heard it is hoped all who object to the quarry plans can be persuaded to sign.

In the meantime, activities to raise awareness of the protest campaign and to raise money to cover costs will be planned over the next few weeks.

More work is also planned to examine the potential legal action that can be taken to halt the quarry development, both now and in the future.

Featured photograph courtesy of Denise Atkins