By Ronald Parker, Alcira Kreimer, Mohan Munasinghe
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Extra resources for Informal settlements, environmental degradation, and disaster vulnerability: the Turkey case study, Volume 97
In spite of government efforts to improve living conditions in the nation's intermediate size cities, most of the urban-dwelling population has opted to live in large cities where these problems are more severe. The percentage of urban population living in cities of 100,000 or more has climbed from 45 percent in the 1960s to 67 percent in 1990. TUBITAK, the State Statistics Institute, estimates that this will reach 75 percent by the year 2000. Urban growth on this scale in the nation's largest cities cannot avoid having a major environmental impact, especially in neighborhoods where the installation of critical infrastructure is slow.
Some had been built on the edge of a steep and unstable ravine, while other were at the ravine bottom on land that was subject to landslide and flood by runoff after heavy rains and/or by a nearby river. Rescue efforts were hindered by the inability of the specially trained search dogs to function near the wafting methane. Casualty estimates ranged from 28 to 50. The dump had been receiving Istanbul's refuse since 1970. Until February 14, 1991, Turkey had almost no legislation concerning solid waste.
In recent decades the disaster risks have increased due to overcrowding, faulty land use planning and construction, inadequate infrastructure and services, and environmental degradation (especially denudation of vegetation). Ankara Ankara, Turkey's second largest city, is located on the Anatolian plateau in the province of Ankara. The city lies in a basin surrounded by mountains. The bulk of the metropolitan area is about 900 meters above sea level, and the modern urban center is dominated by an ancient castle and the old city contained within its walls which are located on a series of central hills.