Balfour Beatty give up on Ilisu Dam
Balfour Beatty has pulled out of the controversial Ilisu Dam project in Turkey. Italian company Impregilo has also pulled out.
The Ilisu Dam, planned for the Kurdish region of southeast Turkey would make more than 30,000 local people homeless.
It would drown dozens of towns and villages including the world historic site of Hasankeyf.
And it would help control water flows on the Tigris river, threatening water conflicts with downstream states - Syria and Iraq.
Balfour Beatty was asking the UK Government to underwrite it (via the Export Credit Guarantee Department) to the tune of about $200m.
Who helped win
Friends of the Earth, the Ilisu Dam Campaign and other NGOs have been campaigning to stop the dam.
Thanks is also due to those of you who sent emails to the Government - via Corporate Action - making it obvious that there was little public support for the project.
We believe it will be very difficult for Turkey to go ahead with the project without the support of the UK and Italy.
The Government breaths a sigh of relief
But Balfour Beatty's withdrawal from the project also lets the UK Government off the hook.
It is no longer in the embarrassing situation of wanting to approve a project which didn't meet the conditions it had previously set.
The Export Credit Guarantee Department has yet to develop ethical and environmental screening criteria for the projects they are asked to back.
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