Before Konya Plain Irrigation Project was implemented, water of Lake Beyşehir was poured into Lake Suğla by passing ca 60 miles through Beyşehir Watercourse. After water emerging from Lake Suğla united with Çarşamba Watercourse, that water spread to Konya Plain and puddles most of which were permanent and small. These puddles would also disrupt agricultural activities, because agricultural lands around were flooded by these puddles. Because lands turned into swamp in the periods when the floods lasted long, air of the environment was deteriorated and the population was faced with the danger of infectious diseases. In 19th Century, the population, which was suffering from these floods that were thought to become more dangerous, drew the attention of local managers and the issue of finding a solution was transferred to the central government from time to time. On the other hand, serious droughts were being experienced in a large part of the Konya Plain in some months of the year, for the land could not be irrigated crop yields decreased too much, even in some years there were great famine events. At the beginning of 19th century, all these cases led the administrators in Konya to the idea to utilize from the water of Beyşehir Lake overflowing Konya Plain. Eventually, Konya Plain Irrigation Project (KOP) was moved to the agenda for the first time seriously in the protocols written up as a result of the petitions of the inhabitants of villages surrounding Bozkır and Seydişehir and of the elders of Konya and sent by Province Konya to Istanbul. The project in question was voiced again in protocols and reports prepared in the years 1853, 1866 and 1880. As a result, the Tender for Irrigation Project was made during the Grand Viziership Period of Ferid Pasha, Avlonyalı, who was the governor of Konya between the years 1898-1902. A contract was signed with Anatolia-Ottoman Railway Company that won the tender in November 10, 1907 in Istanbul and the contract was approved by Sultan Abdulhamid II in April 30, 1908. By means of the project completed between the years 1908-1914, the water of Lake Beyşehir was delivered to Konya Plain through an irrigation channel and that was given to irrigation through three main channels. In this study, the emergence of the idea of Konya Plain Irrigation Project and the first studies carried out in this field are going to be mentioned in the light of some documents taking place in Ottoman Archives of Prime Ministry.
Konya Plain Irrigation Project, Beyşehir Lake, XX. Century, Ottoman