GIRNE AMERICAN UNIVERSITY
MOBILIZATION DECISION FOR THE YEŞILIRMAK DISASTER
By Margaret Sheard
We have received some good news from GAU that there are plans to restore the stricken area around Yeşilırmak to its former natural beauty and we are sure many people will be gladdened that something constructive is to be done to make good the landscape blackened by the recent dreadful fire which swept through the area, destroying everything in its path.
This is the news we have received from GAU.
“GAU Board of Chancellors and Senate approved the decision for mobilization in line with the Yeşilırmak disaster.
The Yeşilırmak fire disaster, which shocked the nation, resulted in the GAU Senate to gather and commence efforts in line with official offices for re-establishing the natural appearance of the region utilising all of the facilities of the university with regard to the requirements.
The natural fabric and biological diversity of the Yeşilırmak area is in need of restoration through nationwide mobilization and GAU Founding Rector and Chancellor of the Board of Administrators, Serhat Akpınar, has made significant comments on the issue.
‘It is a Holy Duty for our Future to Heal the Wounds of our Nature and Nation’
Akpınar referred to the results obtained from TEMA 2013 that 98% of the fires in Turkey and the world are man-orientated. The Yeşilırmak fire disaster has been a lesson of acknowledgement thus we, as GAU, are ready to contribute for the rebuilding of our green environment.
Akpınar also stated that it is a holy duty for our future and children to heal the wounds of our nature and nation. GAU will contribute through students and the general public to plant new trees and regain natural diversity, and will be co-operating with local non-governmental organisations and environmental organisations for a post-disaster action plan.”
Good news indeed, but there is a lesson to be learned. We do not know how the fire started, maybe a carelessly thrown cigarette end, maybe deliberate, we will probably never know but people should be made aware of the hazards of fire during our hot summer months when the trees and undergrowth are so dry. Perhaps TV advertising during the summer months to bring the public’s attention to the dangers and, of course, the aftermath. I recently wrote an article about the fire in Yeşilırmak and in it stated that I hoped that our new Government could perhaps allocate a helicopter which would be on standby for any disaster such as this. I’m not aware of the cost of a helicopter, I am sure it is a huge amount of money, but so also will be the costs to restore the landscape in the area of Yeşilırmak.