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Cablegate: Tracker 23827 - Report On U.S. Speaker Daniel

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

011104Z Aug 05

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 004425

SIPDIS

FOR IIP/G/EUR - CSIEMONH; IIP/T/GIC - CLACOVEY; EUR/PPD -
CTEAL

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPAO OIIP SCUL TU
SUBJECT: TRACKER 23827 - REPORT ON U.S. SPEAKER DANIEL
JACOBS, JULY 18 - 22, 2005


1. DESCRIPTION OF THE ACTIVITY: U.S. Speaker Daniel Jacobs
visited Turkey July 18-22, 2005, for a four-day speaker
program that brought him into contact with government,
business, NGO, and academic audiences for presentations and
discussions of U.S. Environmental Policy with special
emphasis on climate change issues. Jacobs was warmly
welcomed at the Turkish Ministry of Environment and Forestry
on Tuesday, July 19, where he gave a briefing to an audience
of thirty-five participants largely made up of officials
from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and the
Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources; officials from the
Ministry of Public Works, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Environment Section and other government agencies were also
present. Jacobs' presentation gave a concise and up-to-date
overview of U.S. environmental policies related to climate
change, highlighting federal and state responses as well as
private-sector efforts to address issues of emissions
control and clean energy sources. Jacobs' presentation
covered the G-8 Summit communiqu on climate change.

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That afternoon, an audience of thirty academics, NGO
representatives, and business people turned out at an Ankara
think tank for a presentation. At both venues,
participants' questions reflected keen interest in the
issues and a receptivity to U.S. perspectives. Jacobs, who
teaches courses on U.S. Environmental Policy and Law at
George Washington University, also spoke to a group of
Turkish lawyers about the role of the courts in enforcement
of environmental legislation in the U.S. at an evening
program at the Turkish-American Association. In Istanbul,
July 21-22, Jacobs made his presentation to the Turkish
Industrialists and Businessmen's Association (TUSIAD)
Environment Working Group; to TEMA, one of Turkey's largest
environmental NGOs; and to a roundtable of academics and
environmentalists. He was interviewed briefly by a
journalist from "Zaman," Turkey's leading Islamist-oriented

2. JUSTIFICATION AND OBJECTIVES: In recent years in
Turkey, the priority for the government has been economic
growth. As a result, Turkey is building up an enormous
liability of economic costs it will face in the future with
regard to environmental issues. Turkey is far behind other
European countries in efforts to address and reduce the
causes of Global Climate Change. Only last year did Turkey
ratify the UNFCCC. As a prospective member of the EU,
Turkey will be forced to undertake the obligations of the
Kyoto treaty, probably before full membership. The public
is not well-informed about the issue, and government
policymakers and the business community are ill-prepared to
undertake programs to reduce Green House Gas emissions.
Moreover, as a result of the EU's December 17, 2004,
decision to begin accession negotiations and a rising tide
of anti-American feelings, U.S. policy on climate change and
the leading role played by U.S. scientists and experts in
addressing climate change are overlooked or dismissed. The
speaker program was organized to help counter some of the
inaccurate portrayals of climate change issues in general
and U.S. policy specifically; to encourage Turkey's
participation in U.S.-led climate change initiatives; and to
build support for U.S. positions.

4. AUDIENCES REACHED: Representatives of key ministries
with environment-related portfolios; members of Turkey's
leading environmental NGOs and business leaders in TUSIAD,
an influential independent non-profit organization dedicated
to the sound development of a competitive market and a
democratic society in Turkey; academics working in
environment-related fields; and law professionals, including
practicing attorneys and academics in legal fields.
Representational events gave Jacobs an opportunity to
interact with Turkish interlocutors on a more informal
basis.

5. RESULTS: Outstanding. In a meeting with Embassy
officers following Jacobs' presentation, the Deputy Under
Secretary of the Ministry said that the Ministry wishes to

SIPDIS
have close cooperation with the United States on
environmental matters, including such activities as
workshops on drafting environmental legislation;
consultation and workshops on disposal of wastes, including
medical waste, solid waste from agricultural uses, and
hazardous waste; joint projects dealing with monitoring
and control of industrial emissions; and inviting the U.S.
environmental sector to invest in Turkey.

Jacobs was an excellent speaker. His presentations,
delivered with the use of up-to-date and well-prepared power
point visuals, elicited positive responses from officials
familiar with climate change issues who were unaware of U.S.
efforts in this area. More than one participant stated, "We
thought that climate change was not something the U.S. is
interested in. We now see that this is not the case,"
saying that they were surprised and pleased to learn of the
many positive steps taken by both the public and private
sectors in the United States with respect to emissions
control and other climate change issues. Jacobs'
presentations were balanced, clear and substantive,
covering issues from all perspectives. He really shone,
however, in the Q&A and discussion sessions. As a former
trial attorney in the Environment and Natural Resources
Division of the U.S. Department of Justice, Jacobs has
worked as lead counsel in complex litigation related to
enforcement of federal environmental statues. His responses
to complex and difficult questions were informative,
credible and positive. This program was very well received,
and the credit belongs to Dan Jacobs.

6. NON-USG SOURCES OF IN-COUNTRY FUNDING: All sessions were
co-sponsored either by the Ministry of Environment and
Forestry or by an NGO or other organization, which provided
the venues and logistical set-ups.

7. QUALITY OF U.S. SUPPORT AND AGENCY OFFICE: Outstanding.
Post once again thanks Cathy Siemonh at IIP/G/EUR and the
program officers in IIP/T/GIC for their support for this
project.
MCELDOWNEY

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