The theory of ionization-driven drift wave turbulence is presented in the context of a quasilocal model. Linear analysis reveals that ionization effects can destabilize collisional drift waves and can possibly induce parallel shear flow instabilities, as well. Nonlinear analysis indicates that energy is transferred from large to small stable scales and converted to ion kinetic energy. Results indicate mode coupling effects are dominant. Large fluctuation levels, in excess of mixing length expectations, are predicted. The ionization source drives a purely inward particle flux, which can explain the anomalously rapid uptake of particles that occurs in response to gas puffing.