Ecology Union calls on parties to give prominent place to environment in local elections programmes

The Ecology Union called on parties that will run the local elections scheduled for 31 March to prepare climate and disaster emergency action plans.

In a written statement, the Ecology Union underlined that local governments are important for the construction of local democracy and called on parties that will run the local elections scheduled for 31 March to prepare climate and disaster emergency action plans.

The statement said: "It is very important that local governments be organized as local governments elected by the free will of the citizens, far from all kinds of domination, pressure and trustee policies, and that they take into account the demands of the people, ecology, women and labor movements."

The Ecology Union added: "Before the candidacy processes in local governments are closed and the lists are delivered to the Provincial-District Election Boards on 20 February, we call on our friends in the ecology movement to intervene in the local government processes and become independent candidates from the parties they support."

The statement issued the following demands to political parties:

* To be based on a perspective that is not only human-centered but also sees nature as a whole, including humans and all other living things,

* Prioritize the interests of the people and the benefit of nature, not the interests of capital,

* Practice social service municipality, not a municipality for profit,

* Prepare and implement climate and disaster emergency action plans,

* Establishing a 'climate change unit' in local governments,

* When preparing strategy plans, take into account nature protection, climate change, gender equality, and the needs of all disadvantaged groups in society,

* Implement employment-increasing projects for citizens and women in need in order to prevent poverty,

* Make all decisions through participatory, transparent and egalitarian mechanisms such as public assemblies and neighbourhood assemblies, make city councils functional and be open to audit,

* Opening free pre-school education institutions and health units organized from an ecological perspective,

* Open local markets that bring together ecological producers and consumers, social markets and cooperatives that will not reproduce capitalist relations, in order to meet the citizens' need for healthy and cheap food,

* Develop concrete policies on energy saving, energy efficiency and smart buildings to reduce energy consumption,

* In today's Turkey, where drought is increasing, local governments should protect the water resources, which are the source of life, and take the necessary precautions to ensure that water is delivered to all living things free and clean,

* Carry out local works to prevent the commercialization of water,

* Take concrete steps to protect our air, water and soil against projects that cause ecocide and to support the campaign to criminalize and punish ecocide.