Freediving champion dives into sunken city to raise environmental awareness

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In a bid to raise awareness for environmental consciousness, a multiple world-record holder and freediving champion Şahika Ercümen, dived into a sunken city in Turkey’s southeastern province of Şanlıurfa on Nov. 3.

Speaking before the dive, Ercümen said that the dive is in an effort to raise awareness for environmental issues in Turkey and around the world.

“Because unfortunately, the things I encounter the most in the last few years are waste and trash underwater; nature being impacted by these, and a planet unable to breathe,” Ercümen said.

She also said that the waste management problem also has economic consequences, aside from the damage it causes the environment.

Underlining the dive’s importance for raising awareness, Ercümen said, “Sometimes our voices are heard better underwater.”

The dive, under the scope of an event by the United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) Turkey office, took place in a sunken city of Şanlıurfa’s Halfeti district.

The UNDP’s project aims to improve the waste management activities of municipalities, where the population has increased with the migration from Syria, through capacity-building and by establishing a zero-waste management system.

With environmental concerns on one side, the project’s main motive is to increase the livelihoods and strengthen the social cohesion of Syrians and the members of the host community through recycling incentives.

As part of the project, two Civic Amenity Centers will be built in Haliliye and Kilis in line with the Zero Waste Regulation of Environment and Urbanization Ministry.

Hurriyet Daily News

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