The Regulation on Environmental Inspection (“Regulation“) and Decision No. 1286 of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey (TBMM) concerning the Extension of the Term of Office of the Commission working on Minimization of the Effects of Global Climate Change and Effective Use of Water Resources (“TBMM Decision“) was published in Official Gazette No. 31509 on 12 June 2021. The Regulation is available here. The relevant TBMM Decision is available here.
The Regulation changes the minimum requirements that must be addressed to join the environment inspection team. The requirement of being an environmental engineer in order to join the team has been abolished. The Regulation now states that those who are bachelors of engineering, architecture or science programs, who joined the training program set out by the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization and who joined at least 15 environmental inspections as a trainee will be entitled to join the environment inspection team. Teams that meet these conditions will be entitled to carry out planned and unplanned inspections to premises and actions. Failing to comply with the Regulation will lead to administrative sanctions being applied. The administrative decisions may be challenged within 30 days of the notification in the competent administrative courts.
Inspecting marine pollution caused by ships is included in the scope of the Regulation. A separate inspection team will be established by the delegated institutions and authorities to inspect marine pollution. Institutions authorized to impose administrative fines at sea are obliged to continuously control and monitor marine pollution from air, land and sea. The Regulation also includes provisions on administrative fines and payment methods to be imposed on ships. If the administrative fines are not paid immediately and in full, the ship’s representative, owner, operator, charterer, insurer, the agency of the polluting ship or the club insurance of the relevant ship must give a letter of credit. If a ship fails to comply with this obligation, it will be banned from navigation and activity upon the request of the competent authority.
In addition, the terms of office of the commission, which was established by the TBMM to carry out studies on global climate change and the dangers of drought at a national level, were extended from 10 June 2021 to 23 June 2021 through a decision from the TBMM.
The Regulation, supported by the TBMM Decision, contains important provisions concerning the inspection of the environment, especially marine pollution. Companies should carefully examine the amendments introduced under the Regulation and take the necessary steps to fulfill their obligations