Wind Farm Conflicts on the Rural-Ecological Commons: The Case of Karaburun
ABSTRACT With the growing urbanization trend, the disappearance of the strict borders between the rural and urban areas have accelerated and this has increased the heightening pressure towards the rural areas. Also, with the transformation of villages into neighborhoods by means of legislation (Law No. 6360), the common lands, as essential parts of the rural, are under the threat of enclosure. As infrastructural developments, renewable energy appears as one of the triggering agents of the enclosure threats. Renewables are seen as an eco-friendly type of development, which also have political and social legitimacy due to the global concerns of energy-related environmental problems. However, since the wind farms started to be located especially on the rural-ecological commons, several conflicts have emerged. This paper aims to investigate the transformative impacts of wind farm deployments on the rural-ecological commons on the case of Karaburun, the peripheral rural district of İzmir. The study will focus on the conflicts and local oppositions against wind energy investments in order to reveal the fundamental conflicts in relation with the enclosure movements on rural common lands. The methodology of the study is based on media search, in-depth interviews with NGOs and personal observations, which reveal the fundamental conflicts on the pastures in Karaburun.