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Hydraulic patronage: a political ecology of the Turkey-Northern Cyprus water pipeline

Mason, Michael ORCID: 0000-0002-8831-0593 (2020) Hydraulic patronage: a political ecology of the Turkey-Northern Cyprus water pipeline. Political Geography, 76. ISSN 0962-6298

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.polgeo.2019.102086


From a political ecology perspective, I label hydraulic patronage the systemic provision of water resources by a patron state to a client territory. The mega-infrastructure of the Turkey-Northern Cyprus water pipeline is identified as an example of Turkish hydraulic patronage, combining the centralised determination of volumetric flows with a market-led distribution network configuring water allocation and management in the de facto (internationally unrecognised) state of Northern Cyprus. This patronage articulates a Turkish hydro-territorialisation at odds with an island-wide hydrosocial scaling performed by the Republic of Cyprus. Early opposition to the pipeline from municipalities in Northern Cyprus focused on their loss of rents from the licensing of water extraction, while pro-unification political parties objected to a potential spoiling effect on future peace talks with the Republic of Cyprus. Ecological criticisms of the pipeline from Turkish Cypriot civil society actors stressed the displacement of alternative development pathways, including sustainable water management. Hydraulic patronage highlights the duality of state-making and environment-making in the reproduction of contingent sovereignty, which is observable in de facto states and other client territories (e.g. occupied and annexed lands).

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2019 Elsevier Ltd.
Divisions: Geography & Environment
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
T Technology > TC Hydraulic engineering. Ocean engineering
Date Deposited: 19 Sep 2019 15:39
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 02:50

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