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NATURAL RESOURCE ASPECTS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN LEBANON

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AGRICULTURE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) and The Rural Development and Natural Wealth Directorate are most responsible for agriculture. National and International NGOs and UN organizations are also active.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects 

In terms of rural development, MoA is implementing a $5.5 million internationally-supported integrated rural development programme in the Baalbeck-Hermel region to provide small- and medium-scale farmers assistance which would lead to sustainable human development through startup activities. These activities include improvement of health, social services, education and income-generating non-agricultural activities.

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

Three broad areas exist where agriculture practices are having adverse effects:

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

Farmer capacity and awareness building is on-going. In rural areas support for groups like women is provided to help prevent migration to urban areas. Additionally, through UNDP, international assistance to local NGOs is helping vulnerable groups such as women and the disabled. NGOs like the YWCA have programmes of their own with similar goals. YWCA-USA has provided YWCA Lebanon with a $50,000 fund for rural area support.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997.

For country reports on Plant Genetic Resources, click here.
To access the FAOSTAT Data Base for information by country, item, element and year, click here:
Click here to link to the Biosafety Information Network and Advisory Service (BINAS), a service of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), which monitors global developments in regulatory issues in biotechnology.
Click here to link to Country and Sub-regional Information on Plant Genetic Resources of the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations.
Click here to go to Web Site of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, which includes information on the Codex Alimentarius and the Joint FAO/WHO Food Standards Programme.
Click here to access the Web Site of the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR).
Click here to access the sixteen international agricultural research centers that are members of the CGIAR.

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ATMOSPHERE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of Environment (protection of the environment), Ministry of Energy, and Hydraulic Resources (management of energy and energy resources). 

Other ministries are responsible the management of related issues. For instance, the Ministry of Public Health is responsible for health and health related issues, the Ministry of Interior to enforce regulation pertaining to car emissions, and the municipalities for all enforcement at local level.

The Ministry of Environment drafts decrees/laws that are forwarded to concerned Ministries (Ministry of Energy, Hydraulic and Electrical Resources, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Health, etc.) for review and comment, and then to the Council of Ministers for final approval and activation. In the case of laws, draft laws are sent to the Parliament where they will be subject to an in-depth study by the Environment Parliamentary Committee. The approved law/decree will be disseminated through the Official Gazette.

In the case of implementing internationally funded projects, e.g. the Ozone Office (a UNDP Project executed at the Ministry of Environment), the Ministry of Environment along with the Ministries of Finance, Industry, Education, gave consent to implement the Ozone Country Programme. In early 1994, a National Working Committee on Ozone Depleting Substances was formed to support the Ministry of Environment in the ODS issue. This Committee has representatives from the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Industry and Petroleum, Ministry of Education, Department of Customs and Chamber of Industry and Commerce, Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie (ALME), Lebanese Universities (research institutions) and Industry Association. The role of the National Working Committee is to be the main consultative body in ODS and Montreal Protocol related issues in Lebanon and is responsible for the preparation of governmental/publicly supported measures to phase out the ODS in Lebanon.

The same procedures were applied during the execution of the Climate Change Project, and now for the project on “Alternatives to methyl bromide”, these two projects are UNDP projects executed at the Ministry of Environment.

Finally, the Council for Development and Reconstruction prepared a Five Year Development Plan (2000 – 2004) with the aim to address social issues, achieve balanced development through concentration on less developed regions, and upgrade productive sectors. The rate of air polluting gases and deforestation were adopted as main indicators for planning and execution of projects during the defined period.

Authorities for decision-making are linked to central government.  Local decision-making takes place through Mohafazats (Governorates) that provide municipalities with decisions and laws required to be implemented. Then local authorities have the full right to enforce the application of these laws through the municipal police.

The Ozone Office was established to implement obligations required by Montreal Protocol. The project targeted the public sector for introducing appropriate regulatory and legal mechanisms, the private sector for phasing out ODS, and public at large to be aware of ODS negative consequences.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

The Decision 52/1 (1996) issued by the Ministry of Environment, and pertaining to specifications and rates relative to reducing pollution of air, water and soil. Four Annexes were included with relevant interest to the protection of the atmosphere (Article 1), these are:

-           Annex 11: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants resulting for used burned oils;

-           Annex 12: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants resulting from domestic waste incineration;

-           Annex 13: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants emitted from cement factories;

-     Annex 14: Maximum value allowed for ambient air pollutants.

The Law 6603 (issued 1995, Ministry of Environment) defines in its article 1 the conditions for use of large vehicles (trucks), buses, diesel operating vehicles, in addition to monitoring the acceptable average and quality for smoke emissions. This law defines the maximum allowed main pollutants emitted by these vehicles according to the following rates:

 

Type of pollutants

Maximum allowed

Carbon monoxide

10 mg/m3 Carbon Monoxide (CO)

Nitrogen Dioxide

0.1 mg/m3 Nitrogen dioxide (NO2)

Hydrocarbures

0.16 mg/m3 Hydrocarbres (HC)

Smoke

0.075 mg/m3 smoke (TSP)

 Also the article 2 of the same law defines Diesel specifications as follows:

-           sulfur should not exceed 0.5%;

-           Lead free;

-           Water free;

-           Residues free.

 

Decision 15/1, 2000 (amending decision 23/1, 1995) pertaining to banning the use and import of vehicle fire extinguishers containing halons.

 Currently, work is proceeding on promulgating decisions pertaining to licensing system for import and export, banning importing equipment containing ODS, and specifically CFCs. 

An EIA decree is currently under preparation by the Unit of Planning and Programming, a World Bank project executed at the Ministry of Environment. This decree would indirectly contribute to the protection of the atmosphere by regulating industrial and development projects to take place and requiring appropriate mitigation measures for the implementation of any plant inducing air pollution. An EIA chapter is provided in the Code of the Environment.

The project for “Strengthening the Permitting and Auditing System for Industries” (SPASI) is aiming at strengthening the permitting, monitoring and auditing system for industries through the development of necessary legislation and the introduction of adequate tools. In this respect, environmental quality standards will be prepared as one of the objectives set by the project. SPASI is funded by EU-LIFE Third Countries, managed by UNDP and executed at the Ministry of Environment.

Finally, the Code of the Environment (that is still in the Parliament for review since 1998) proposed by the Ministry of Environment stipulates in the Chapter 2- Section 14 the mechanisms needed for environmental monitoring on the regulatory and technical aspects. Chapter 5, section one, puts in place the basis for establishing national standards, adopting measures for reducing consumption and importing items and gases listed in the annexes pertaining to the conventions ratified by Lebanon, developing alternatives to fuel, conserving and developing green cover, in addition to enforcement rules and regulations.

Proposals to amend Law 6603 suggests incentives and measures such as adopting lower prices for unleaded fuel prices compared to leaded fuel. Regulatory measures would include the obligatory use of catalytic converters, annual inspections of car exhausters, etc.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

A national GHG mitigation strategy has been elaborated by the team of experts of the Climate Change Project (GEF/UNDP funded project) in 1999, and introduced in the Technical Annex to Lebanon’s First National Communication Report to UNFCCC, which assesses and evaluates in details feasible options for GHG emission reduction in the following sectors:

-           Electricity supply;

-           Building sector relative to building equipment and energy use industry;

-           Transportation sector;

-           Forestry sector; and

-           Waste sector.

The above-mentioned strategy includes small, medium and large term goals.

Conserving and increasing greenhouse gas sinks;  

The establishment of protected areas and increasing the vegetation cover is a main priority of the Ministry of Environment’s programme for the following years. In addition, all reforestation activities and initiatives undertaken by NGOs and local communities are highly supported. 

Mitigating ozone depletion;  

The following programme was developed based on the overall strategy of Montreal Protocol:

Phase I: 1998-2000: 

  • Total ODS phase out in aerosol industries;

  •   Total ODS phase out in foam industries;

  •   Total ODS phase out in production of commercial and industrial   refrigeration industries;

  •   Implementation of reduction, recovery and recycling programme during refrigeration and commercial units              maintenance.

  • Implementation of Methyl Bromide alternatives Demonstration Project. 

Phase II: 2001-2003: 

·                         Total phase out in production of commercial refrigeration and foam sectors.

·                        Retrofitting of all commercial and industrial refrigeration units,

·                        Continuation of the reduction, recovery and recycling programme

·                        Implementation of Methyl Bromide Investment Projects.

·                        Halon Bank.

·                        Rules, bans and regulations.

Phase III: 2003-2005:

  •    Progressive decrease of ODS due to the reduction in the number of mobile air conditioners and household refrigerators using CFCs (20% less per year)

  •     Total phase out of ODS

·        Monitoring and evaluation.

The Methyl Bromide Alternative Demonstration Project was an outcome of the Ozone Office. Managed by UNDP and executed at the Ministry of Environment, the project aims at demonstrating the efficacy of various chemical and non-chemical methods as technical and economical alternatives to methyl bromide. The non-chemical methods include the soil solarization, bio-fumigation, and use of resistant varieties where available. A national strategy to implement methyl bromide will be formulated at a last phase of the project implementation upon obtaining of all results of the demonstration sites.

The proposed scenarios were elaborated based on 1994 data. Two plans were proposed (1) a short term plan (1994-2004) and (2) the long term plan (2005- 2040). These projections are linked to what the government has announced in terms of policies and priorities, e.g. commitment to full restoration of the generation, transmission and distribution networks. 

The project outcomes will be sustained through the network of focal points that encompass all concerned ministries and institutions. Another project the Top-Up Project for Climate Change will assist in reinforcing this step by assessing the technology needs required to assess greenhouse gas emissions in the different sectors.

The implemented strategy in Lebanon is the overall strategy adopted by Montreal Protocol in phase of ODS consumption and production (Lebanon’s mandate is based on regulating the consumption patterns since the Country is not a producer).

This strategy which is implemented by the Ozone Office (GEF/UNDP), a programme executed at the Ministry of Environment, includes among others formulation of required laws, covering other industrial sectors for a complete phase out of ODS, as well build the capacities of the various national participants of this programme.

Strategy related to transboundary air pollution is not elaborated yet since Lebanon is a not a signatory of the Convention on Transboundary Air Pollution, which is still restricted to European countries.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

Scientists, university academicians and only one NGO (Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie) are highly involved in (1) the Steering Committees pertaining to Climate Change and Ozone Office, (2) research programmes and (3) technical consultants. Their role is rather advisory with a high participation level.

Industries are highly involved in the Ozone Office activities as (1) target groups in phasing out ODS substances and (2) decision-makers in participating to the formulation of regulatory and legal tools.

Women, children and youth are rather included in awareness raising activities, with no effect on decision-making process.

Programmes and Projects 

No measures have been introduced yet to the industrial and agricultural sectors, although greenhouse gas emissions in Lebanon mainly come from energy activities, responsible for 85% of all CO2 emissions. Recommendations were proposed in the Technical Annex to Lebanon’s First National Communication carried out in the framework of activities of the GEF/UNDP Climate Chang project (1999), the outcomes of this report are still awaiting to be studied by the concerned ministries.

The CO2 emissions from energy use in manufacturing industries and construction represent 24% of the energy sector’s total emissions. According to data of 1994, Lebanese manufacturers consumed 39.15 million of gegajoules of fuel for heat and power, including both the fuel used directly and the fuel burnt remotely to generate electricity. In addition to being processed by combustion, CO2 is generated in the calcination of carbonates when manufacturing cement, iron and glass. However, the Technical Annex proposed mitigation scenarios for reducing CO2 emissions at 10% discount rate. Most of the mitigation options for the industrial sector are concerned with the improvement of energy efficiency, either in the use of electricity for motors and lighting or in cleaner combustion processes in boilers and furnaces through fuel switching or replacement with efficient systems. e.g., Bakeries fuel switching from Diesel to LPG, Natural Gas replacing fuel Oil, cement reduction 10-20% with pre-heat, and so on.

Regarding the agriculture sector, the same report proposed some recommendations to be adopted at the governmental, private and individual levels. These measures are: lower population growth, sustainable and economic water use, soil fertility conservation by land reclamation, less regulations to mitigate the disintegration of estate ownership, advanced agricultural techniques used and governmental subsidence policy for social reasons. These measures were suggested based on the increasing demographic pressure on the coast and inland, urban expansion on the expense of agricultural lands, and the changes in the agricultural practices. 

However, it is worth mentioning that the Climate Change Project paved the way for two major programmes that would reduce emissions and concentrations of greenhouse gas, these are: (1) the establishment of the Energy efficiency Center, and (2) the Elaboration of the thermal building energy efficient guidelines.

Finally, it is worth mentioning that two international programmes are targeting the conservation of Lebanese forests in Lebanon. These are (1) the Protected Area Project (GEF) administered by UNDP and implemented at the Ministry of Environment, with aim to manage and protect three reserves (out of which two are forest, Barouk Cedar Reserve with 500 km2 and the Horsh Ehden Reserve), and (2) an EU assistance to forest protection along with support to the sustainable development of forested areas in Lebanon. This programme aims at training forest guards and engineers of the Ministry of Agriculture and the elaboration of plans for sustainable forest management. Three pilot sites of sustainable forestry have been developed successfully in three different regions of Lebanon.

Status

Air pollution is considered among the most serious problems in Lebanon mainly due to its increasing impacts on health (asthma and other respiratory problems) although Lebanese inhabitants are still unaware of the linkage to be made between their healthy problems and the status of the surrounding environment where they live. This pollution is resulting from the high density of people living in urban areas (around 350 inhabitants/km2) lacking the minimum needs of green cover. In addition, more than a million cars are operational in Lebanon (more than 50% in Beirut Capital with an average of 3 persons per car). It is to note that more than 65% of industries are located on the coastline highest in terms of population growth.

After the war ended, environment was not considered a priority. Therefore, building infrastructure, establishing touristic complexes, constructing marinas, licensing industries and quarries as well as expanding residential complexes were achieved on the expenses of the vegetation cover estimated now to not exceed 6% of the total Lebanese surface area. Finally, it is not to forget the bad agricultural practices (high use of pesticides, bad irrigation techniques, de-weeding causing forest fires most of the time). All these factors exert an impact on the atmosphere, some of them reflecting an immediate negative effect, others will be more visible at medium and long term. 

A total of 75.000 ha of forest trees (65.000 evergreen and 10.000 deciduous), as well as 50.280.000 non-forest trees, according to estimates of the final report of Lebanon’s First National Communication (1994). 

The non-forest trees include (1) 49.794.000 farm and village trees (21.980.000 of evergreen fruit and olive trees and 27.814.000 of deciduous fruit trees) (2) 486.000 urban trees (450.000 evergreen urban trees and 36.000 deciduous urban trees).

However, the report noted that forests in 1994 constituted a minor source of carbon dioxide rather than a sink due to the increasing loss of woody biomass stocks and to forest fires. Finally the total amount of Carbon dioxide emission from land-use change and forestry was estimated to 200.413225kt.

CFCs drop from 1 million tons (1990) to 150.000 tons (1998-1999). Very rough estimates indicate that this volume is decomposed into 75% of the total amount trapped into refrigeration and 25% go to aerosols and foams. 

Changes in Methyl bromide were noticed as 297 tons (1998) to 267 tons (2000) due to decreasing availability in the market and organizing awareness campaigns.

Annex 11 maximal values to be respected during oil incineration
(Incinerators of thermal value greater than 3 MW).

Element

Maximal value
mg/m3

Cadmium (Cd)

0.5

Nickel (Ni)

1

Chrome (Cr) + Cupper (Cu) + Vanadium (V)

1.5

Lead (Pb)

5

Chlore in HCL

100

Fluor in HF

5

Dust

-

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2)

-

Source: Decision 52/1 (1996) - Annex 11: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants resulting for used burned oils.

Values to be respected during incineration of domestic waste
Incinerator capacity

 

> 3 tons/ hour

1-3 tons/ hour

< 1 ton/hour

Element

Max. value mg/m3

Max. value mg/m3

Max. value mg/m3

Total suspended bodies

200

100

30

PB + Cr + Cu + Mn

-

5

5

Ni + As

-

1

1

Cd + Hg

-

0.2

0.2

Cl in HCl

250

100

50

F in HF

-

4

2

SO2

-

300

300

Source: Decision 52/1 (1996) - Annex 12: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants resulting from domestic waste incineration.

Limited allowed emissions from cement factories
Total suspended bodies

 

Max. limits
(mg/m3)

Existing furnaces

150

Furnaces under construction

50

Cooler (in case of lack of gas recycling)

100

Grounders

50

Other installations

50

Nitrogen Oxides (NO2)

 

Limits (mg/Nm3)

Furnaces operating through dry process with heat recuperation

< 1200

Furnaces operating of dry or semi-humid processes

< 1500

Furnaces operating on wet process (without additional heat)

< 1800

Heavy metals

 

Limits (mg/Nm3)

Cd +Ti + Hg

0.2

AS + Co + Ni + Se + Te

1

Sb + Cr + Cu + Sn + Mn + Pb + Va + Zn

5

Sources: Decision 52/1 (1996) - Annex 13: Maximum value allowed for the emissions of air pollutants emitted from cement factories;

Maximum allowed values for ambient air pollutants

Pollutant

Maximal value UG/m3

Exposure duration

Sulfur dioxide (SO2)

350

120

80

1 hour

24 hours

1 year

Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2)

200

150

100

1 hour

24 hours

1 year

Ozone (O3)

150

100

1 hour

8 hours

Carbon monoxide (CO)

30000

10000

1 hour

8 hours

Total suspended bodies

120

24 hours

Black suspended bodies less than 10 microns (PM<10)

80

24 hours

Lead

1.00

1 year

Benzene

5ppb

1 year

Source: Decision 52/1 (1996) - Annex 14: Maximum value allowed for ambient air pollutants

Apart from establishing national protected areas, no tangible measures were detected to land-used practices, whether in the Directorate General for Urban Planning or at the Ministries concerned by the transport system and the industrial sector. It is hoped that the Integrated Coastal Area Management Programme in Lebanon financed by the Mediterranean Action Plan and executed at the Ministry of Environment will assist in demonstrating an effective and integrated land-use planning that would reduce harmful effect on human and natural resources in the country (expected to be launched in early 2001).

In 1992, Lebanon used 886.6 ODP Tons of ODS, equivalent to 0.23 kg per capita. In 1993, Lebanon imported and used 923.1 ODP Tons of ODS, equivalent to 0.24 Kg per capita. Between 1992 and 1998, the consumption decreased to 536.82 Tons equivalent to 0.13 per capita consumption. The main substances used are CFC 11, CFC 12.

There is no ODS production in Lebanon. Measures are being done to phase out ODS consumed in the industrial sector. Progress has been made in phasing out these substances from 41 refrigerator companies, 12 major manufacturers of domestic and industrial air-conditioning equipment, 9 foam companies, 8 aerosol companies. Some refrigeration and air-conditioning maintenance companies have already introduced some reduced ODP substances like HCFC 22 as refrigerants. Some foam producers in Lebanon have been starting to use water as a blowing agent.

Some activities are taking place to protect forests and marine resources through the establishment of protected areas (five protected areas by-law, and other ten areas by ministerial decree) and regulating the fishery sector (e.g. ban of dynamite use). Unfortunately, these activities are still not widely applicable and lack an integrated strategy and an action plan to be put in place, adopted, implemented and above all, to be enforced by the concerned national authorities.

The baseline for this strategy and the action plan are already proposed in the Technical Annex to Lebanon’s First National Communication. This Annex pointed out to forest areas as the main proportion of land considered as greenhouse gas sinks. Based on statistics of the year 1994, forest land consist of land covered with forest with two levels of crown density cover (1) more than 40% and (2) from 10 to 40%, and wasteland where the crown cover is less than 10%. Wasteland includes woodlands and rangelands covering 60.000 and 147.000 hectares respectively in year 1994. To increase greenhouse sinks, the following mitigation options should be adopted:

-           The protection and conservation of natural forests and the improvement of forest management; and

-            Increasing the bio-mass density of existing and under-stocked forests, through increasing of the area of more than 40% crown cover from 32.000 ha in 1994 to 55.000 ha by year 2040;

-     The reforestation of 38.000 ha of woodlands up to the year 2040. 

Challenges

The study made on Air pollution in Lebanon made by Harvard Institute in cooperation with the Ministry of Environment showed some measures on polluted air in Beirut. These results could be summarized as follows:

-           A severe pollution in lead reaching 8 micrograms/m3, while the maximum allowed international rate is 1.5 micrograms/m3, micrograms/m3, due to the fact that 85% of drivers are still using leaded fuel.

-           44% of the blood samples taken at the American University of Beirut showed an amount of lead exceeding 16 micrograms/ deciliter, while the international allowed rate is 10 micrograms/deciliter;

-           pollution with particulates reaching the double;

-           pollution with ozone gas due to the transport system;

-           Pollution with other gases such as carbon monoxide and sulfur dioxide.

 

On the other hand, the same study pointed out to some facts relative to health impact of air pollution in Beirut. According to the study, 1 million inhabitants live in Beirut (out of 3.5 million in Lebanon), and the estimated number of deaths is 28.700 per year in all of Lebanon and 8.200 persons in Beirut. Out of 150.000 health cases admitted to Hospitals in Beirut, 15% are admitted for diseases affected by air pollution. However no break down by age, sex or diagnosis is available.

Finally, all studies on air pollution are still concentrated on cities rather than rural areas due to the severity of cases reached in urban areas.

The main problems could be summarized in the:

-           Lack of regulatory framework (and lack of enforcement, when these laws available);

-           Shortage in staff at the Ministry of Environment and other public institutions;

-           Weak coordination needed to be strengthened to set an action plan and adopt officially the mitigation measures (case of Climate Change outcomes).

-           Lack of financial means;

-     Lack of trained staff at related ministries.

The main problems going against developing terrestrial  resources are:

-           The lack of an integrated land-use plan on the national level, master plans are being developed on a city or shore sections level;

-           The fast urban expansion (human settlements, roads infrastructure, etc.);

-           High forest fire occurrence and unsustainable agricultural practices;

-           Lack of awareness;

-           The bad economic situation that put the environment protection as the least priority.

 

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

The GEF, the Interim funding mechanism to the Climate Change Convention, along with UNDP, funded the Climate Change enabling activity in Lebanon (1998-1999) to build national capacity in order to fulfill its convention requirements. Three Main activities were undertaken under this project:

-           A first National inventory of greenhouse gases for baseline year 1994 was developed;

-           A national greenhouse gas mitigation strategy was prepared that comprises options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from main sources such as the energy sector, waste sector, industrial sector and the forestry as a potential sink of CO2.

-           Lebanon’s vulnerability was assessed to climate change. This analysis comprised the terrestrial ecosystem (forestry, protected areas and agricultural crops), the marine ecosystem, coastal zones and water resources.

 

The Climate Change designed a brochure “think green, not red (red is climate change)” that was disseminated to the public at large, and schools in specific. In addition to the website (see below).

The Ozone Office used diverse types of tools to promote public awareness such as one booklet for professionals, one booklet for children, two types, UV Card meters, flyers; table calendar, UV rated sun-glasses for children, brochure “sun guide”, car stickers, as well as lectures in over 111 schools (an average of 35000 students) and universities. Finally a total number of 39 Arabic, 12 English and 3 French articles were released in national newspapers and magazines, 10 TV interviews were made and one TV spot from 1998 to 2000.

The Methyl Bromide Alternatives Project is being considered as a demonstration project encompassing a capacity building component targeting the local farmers. Application of various alternatives to methyl bromide was performed in 6 demonstration sites distributed in the different Mohafzats of Lebanon. Announcements of the first alternative crops are being organized in each site as well as training sessions for local farmers in the purpose of disseminating information on obtained results and the accurate application of the alternatives as well.

The following examples were extracted from the guidebook “Environmental education: curriculum and goals”- Pre-university levels. This guidebook was published by the Ministry of Education and disseminated to all schools in 1998 based on law no. 73/M/98, date 13/11/1998. It is to note that this law obliges schools (private and public), publishing houses, school book writers to abide by the obligations included in this law.

 

Content

Area of study

School year

Pedagogic goals
(knowledge, skills, position)

Suggested activities

* Air pollution

* Importance of green areas in cities.

*Greenhouse gases: Scientific background and knowing the impact of the non-monitored industrial development in this respect.

 

* Ozone hole: Scientific interpretation and factors that increase its danger.

Geography

Science

 

Chemistry

 

 

 

 

Chemistry

4th elementary

1st complementary


Secondary- 2nd year (humanities section)

 

 

 

Secondary- 1st year

Identification of the elements of ambient air

Importance of green areas in cities and their role in increasing oxygen level in the air.

- Description of greenhouse gas emissions.
- Description of main relevant gases.
- Negative impact on Earth.
- Suggest measures to prevent and reduce pollution:
1-Reduce energy use;
2-Forests and green areas.


- Introduction to the importance of ozone layer to protect earth.
- Introduction of ozone hole.
- Reasons for this phenomenon.
- CFCs effects on Ozone.
- Contents of CFCs.
- International laws banning CFCs use.
- Support national and international campaigns to stop using pollutants affecting the ozone layer.

 

 

 

Conduct research on the best means and solution to avoid this phenomenon.

 

 


Visit to a supermarket for a search on the usage of CFCs in Lebanon.

Posters and brochures in that respect.

 

 

-           The Climate Change Project carried out training for experts on:

-           How to collect data;

-           How to use the intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) guidelines;

-           Conduct inventories;

-           How to use leap models for mitigation measures;

-           How to conduct vulnerability assessment.

 

In addition, the Climate Change project has formed a Steering Committee to regularly update national inventories on GHG emissions, 

- The result of the training programme undertaken by the Ozone Office was the following:

Training

Total expected trainee

Number achieved (until year 2000)

Refrigeration sector

450

200

Teachers in refrigeration

40

40

Customs officers

30

30

Commercial refrigeration manufacturers

40

6

In addition to a capacity building programme carried out by the same project outside Lebanon (6 industries of the refrigeration sector visited Italy in 2000). 

- The Project on Alternatives to Methyl Bromide carried out 7 training courses. 120 farmers (owners of an average of 15 ha each), 30 university students, professors, engineers working in private companies as well as experts benefited from these training. 

Information 

The National Meteorological Authority undertakes daily measurement of various changes that might affect the ambient air, including measuring air pollutants.

Data pertaining to greenhouse gas emission inventories for Lebanon are relevant to year 1994. The below-drawn table summarizes emissions made by various sectors.

Sector

CO2

CH4

N2O

NOx

CO

NMVOC

SO2

 

(Gg)

(Gg)

(Gg)

(Gg)

(Gg)

(Gg)

(Gg)

Energy

11678.694

1.3794

0.1157

54.0959

473.7119

87.3411

79.6036

Industry

1924.063

NO

NO

0.01112

0.0003

273.888

3.382

Solvents

NE

NE

NE

NE

NE

NE

NE

Agriculture

 

7.97862

3.0147

0.00146

0.04306

   

Land-use change & forestry

200.4132

0.253

0.00168

0.06276

2.213

   

Waste

0

42.804

0

0

0

0

0

TOTAL

13803.1702

52.41502

3.13208

54.17124

475.96826

361.2291

82.9852

Source: Climate Change Project- Report of the Technical Annex to Lebanon’s First National Communication Report to UNFCCC –1999.

 Measurements of following years were not carried out due to lack of financial support (efforts are being made to secure these funds). Therefore, changes cannot be monitored for the present moment.

Data pertaining to 1991 and earlier is very difficult to collect and estimate because of the war during that time. Due to the fact that the protection of the atmosphere is a newly introduced topic in the country, data was first collected from all concerned entities (e.g. universities, scientists, national NGOs, international agencies, and others) and then assessed in terms of quality and quantity. Information is also obtained though contracting consultants to collect data based on intensive field visits, interviews, questionnaires and research. Database is then constituted, maintained and updated through the offices of Climate Change and Ozone at the Ministry of Environment, the Remote Sensing Center (for satellite images), the Lebanese Meteorological Authority and the private sector (mainly consultancy firms). 

Example: The Government of Lebanon conducted a survey with the assistance of ALME on the ozone depleting substances, their import and use. The results and original data of the survey as well as other support material are retained at the Ministry of Environment & ALME.

The information constituting this database are disseminated to international organizations, the Secretariats of Climate Change and Ozone, Multilateral Fund of Montreal Protocol, and locally to media and other concerned individuals and institutions.

National indicators on climate change, ozone depleting substances and alternatives to Methyl bromide are currently under development by the Lebanese Environment and Development Observatory (LEDO). 

Information on the protection of the atmosphere can be obtained through:

1-      The public library established at the premises of the Ministry of Environment (from 8.00 a.m. till 14.00 p.m. daily, except Sundays);

2-      UNDP and UN-ESCWA libraries;

3-      Publications of the Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie et de l’Environnement (ALME) (published in French and English)

4-      Websites:

-           Ozone depleting substances: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/ozone.

-           Climate Change: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/climate.

-           UNDP website: www.undp.org.lb

-           ALME: www.almee.org 

 

At national level, data is disseminated through publications, brochures, awareness campaigns and exhibitions, participation in seminars and conferences, newspapers and TV interviews. 

At international level, all reports and publications are forwarded to the Secretariats of Climate Change and Montreal Protocol, as well as funding agencies. They are as well disseminated through national participation in regional and international conferences, workshops and seminars. 

Research and Technologies 

Various research programmes are carried out at Lebanese universities.

The Lebanese Meteorology Authority undertakes major readings pertaining to atmospheric pollutants. However, the detection system used is not mobile and located in a geographic area that does not represent the characteristics of ambient air in Lebanon.

In addition, pollution levels are mapped by the Remote-sensing Center, which show concentrations of air pollution all over the Lebanese territory. 

On the top of that, UV radiation measurement is still lacking in Lebanon, a matter that was reflected by the Ozone Office at the Ministry of Environment.

Based on answer to question 26, more stations are needed to be located all over the Lebanese territory to form a network of stations that would be supported by the Lebanese Meteorology Authority, the National Council for Scientific Research and the Ministry of Environment.  In this respect, this latter is in the process of bidding to acquire equipment for measurement of stack air emissions.

Still, the formulation of necessary legal framework, proper enforcement of existing laws as well as conducting continuous awareness programmes are considered needs and priorities required to ensure the atmosphere protection.

Financing 

Until now, local assistance is considered as an in-kind support taking into consideration the institutions participating in the National Committees. Financial contribution is minimal (in process of study for allocation). Private sources of financing is not applicable yet.

 

Almost all funds pertaining to the protection of the atmosphere are allocated from international sources (GEF, Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol through UNEP, EU, UNDP, etc.).

Several projects are funded (or in the process of being funded) as a result to the First National Communication report undertaken by the Climate Change Project (1997-1999):

    -    UNDP/GEF: - Lebanon cross-sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operations;

   -           Energy Conservation Center (4 million US$).

-           Capacity building for the adoption and the application of energy codes for buildings (regional programme of 1.295.000 US$, Lebanese share is 500.000 US$).

-    UNDP: Climate Change Project (292.000 US$).

-    METAP/ Harvard Institute: Air pollution in Lebanon (15.000 US$).

-     FFEM/AFD/ALME: Building energy efficiency in Lebanon (5.700.000 French francs).

-     Top-Up funding, Climate Change enabling activity, additional financing for capacity building in priority areas (100.000 US$).

-    For the Ozone Project the total expenditure is being amounted to US$ 6.262.135 (from UNIDO, FEEM, UNDP and GTZ sources).

Mechanisms are rather based on the implementation of obligations pertaining to conventions ratified by the Lebanese Government. Therefore, studies, contacts and other steps are being made by the Ministry of Environment to increase the number of projects relative to the protection of the atmosphere.

On the other hand, the importance of protecting the atmosphere is becoming crucial within the process of globalization, the establishment of free trade zones, inclusion of Lebanon in the Euro-Med Partnership, and other emerging regulatory and technical issues like the global phasing out of CFCs, etc. This fact is increasingly pushing the concerned institutions to think of appropriate procedures enabling the country to compete in the global market.

Cooperation

Cooperation is active with the Fonds Français pour l’Environnment Mondial (FFEM), GEF, UNDP, l’Agence Française pour le Développment (AFD), and other international funding agencies. The above-mentioned activities come within an overall programme that would include formulating policies, research and technology transfer in addition to the capacity building component.

Lebanon ratified the United Nations Convention on Climate Change in 1994. Since then all obligations pertaining to this convention were fulfilled, mainly the First National Communication Report executed within the framework of the Climate Change project. As for the Kyoto Protocol, the Lebanese Government is still studying the possibility of signature and ratification after the outcomes and mechanisms of the mentioned Protocol are being clarified.

Lebanon is a signatory to Montreal Protocol. It is operating under the article 5, paragraph 1, of the Protocol since its consumption of ODS is less than 0.3 kg per capita. According to this signature, the Lebanese Government fulfilled his obligations regarding the freezing of its ODS consumption in 1999 according to the rate of years 1995/96/97. In addition Lebanon is obliged to reduce 50% of his consumption in 2005. It is to note that the Lebanese Government, represented by the Ministry of Environment, attends all meetings pertaining to Montreal Protocol.

Lebanon attends meetings pertaining to the Convention on Tranboundary Air Pollution, as this Convention is restricted to European Countries. As for other international meetings, the Ministry of Environment participates regularly in the international and regional meetings held in the context of the above-mentioned conventions.

Climate Change: The Conference of Parties.

The Ozone Office: - The Open ended working group Meeting (twice per year);

-           Meetings of the Parties of Montreal Protocol;

ODS network meeting for West Asia countries, with UNEP.

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 9th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 2001. Last update: November 2000.

Click here for national information from the Web site of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.

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BIODIVERSITY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministries of Environment (Department of Protected Areas and Wildlife) and of Agriculture (Department of National Resources and Rural Areas) are both decision makers in this area, and this has created conflicts of authority. While MoE oversees the Biodiversity Convention, MoA is involved in its execution. The same applies to the management of protected areas. Unfortunately, staffing at MoE and MoA is limited, perhaps due to unattractive salaries for professionals. The NCSR and NGOs are also involved.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

Enabling activities were initiated to prepare a national strategy and action plan.

Programmes and Projects 

The Protected Areas Project began work on 15 November 1996 at the Ministry of Environment. The project has to put into place an effectively managed system to protect endemic and endangered species and incorporate biodiversity conservation as an integral part of sustainable human development. The project includes three areas: 1) Arz El-Shouf (Cedars), 2) Horsh Ehden Forest and 3) Palm Islands. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature Resources (IUCN), other NGOs and CBOs support the project and are involved in monitoring and management. The management staff is expected to be around 20 persons, there are at least three women working in the park management and one war handicapped

Status

The French Government will finance three additional protected areas during 1997. Since 1992 the Lebanese Government has provided assistance to three existing protected areas in wetlands and coastal areas. The Government is processing the ratification of the Ramsar Convention for this process.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

Studies on the biological diversity of Lebanon (undertaken by the MoA with the assistance of UNEP) have been completed. The results of these studies were published in 9 volumes in January 1997. There are 9,119 documented living species, of which 4633 are flora and 4486 are fauna.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The Convention on Biological Diversity was signed in 1992 and ratified in 1994. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora was signed in 1995.

Considering interest in recovering its role as a regional tourism destination, Lebanon has also signed the International Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage.

Lebanon also cooperates with UNDP, the GEF, IUCN, and NCSR:

  • Financing was received from UNDP/GEF for the protection and administration of three protected areas - $2.5 million
  • FFEM provided $700,000 for three additional protected areas
  • Enabling activity from GEF/UNDP for $300,000 for Biodiversity
  • Counting study from GEF/UNDP for $200,000

 

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: June 1997.

For access to the Web Site of the Convention on Biological Diversity, click here:
For access to the Web Site of the CITES Convention, click here:
For the Web Site of the CMS Convention, click here:
For the Web Site of the Convention on the Protection of the World's Cultural and Natural Heritage, click here:
For the country-by-country, Man in the Biosphere On-Line Query System, click here:
Click here to link to the Biosafety Information Network and Advisory Service (BINAS), a service of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), which monitors global developments in regulatory issues in biotechnology.
Click here to go to the Web Site of UNEP's International Register on Biosafety.
Click here for the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology Biosafety WebPages

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DESERTIFICATION AND DROUGHT

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The main decision-making bodies are the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Hydraulic and Electric Resources, and the Ministry of Environment. With support from FAO and UNDP, a National Secretary for the Convention to Combat Desertification was recruited and then a National Committee to Combat Desertification was formed, supported by UNDP with $80,000

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Laws have been issued by various Ministries to combat tree cutting and overgrazing. Law enforcement and awareness in this area is generally weak, although some increased activity in tree cutting law enforcement has been occurring.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

The National Committee to Combat Desertification includes representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Environment, NGOs, scientists and experts from FAO and UNDP. A strategy and an action plan to combat desertification are in the process of being formulated. A first National Awareness Seminar was organized and gave recommendations for the framework of the National Action Programme to Combat Desertification.

Programmes and Projects 

Several projects have been initiated to combat desertification:
- The Baalbech-Hermel Integrated Rural Development Program in the Bekaa area is an ongoing project which provides small and medium scale farmers assistance for start off activities such as alternative agriculture for illicite crops, improvement of health and social services, education and income generating non-agricultural activities. The programme is administered by the Ministry of Agriculture. It also includes training for rural women.
- The Small Holder Livestock Rehabilitation Program started in 1995 in the Bekaa area with support from IFAD and YWCA and with participation of local NGOs. It aims to encourage farmers to stay on their lands and at enforcing the role of women through training and orientation programs on technical know-how of agricultural skills. The project also provides loans for farmers.
- Two projects are undertaken by the Ministry of Agriculture and supported from FAO to strengthen the National Pesticides Management System and the utilization of compost. The second project aims at establishing quality control for compost from urban waste. The Agricultural Research Centre in Fanar participates in both projects.

Status

It is estimated that 65% of Lebanese lands are seriously affected by erosion from wind, temperature change and human activities and the cultivated areas have dropped during the war from 360,000 ha to 200,000 ha. The long years of unplanned land use in the coastal zone as well as in the mountain area, caused a grave damage to natural resources. Deforestation, desertification and drought vary from one area to another depending on climate, the level of unplanned urbanisation and environmentally unfriendly economic and social activities.

The main causes for land degradation are abandoning land, migration, involuntary displacement, encroachment of residential development and unplanned urbanization, overuse of ground water for irrigation, the abuse of chemicals, especially pesticides, changing agricultural practices leading to degradation of terraced lands, overgrazing of livestock leading to soil erosion and desertification and lack of integrated planning and management.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies 

No information is available. 

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The International Convention to Combat Desertification in Countries Experiencing Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa was signed in 1995 and ratified in 1996.

The FAO and UNDP/Capacity 21/UNIDO are helping in raising awareness. The World Bank /IFAD also helps with rehabilitation of irrigation schemes.

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: December 1997.

For access to the Web Site of the Convention to Combat Desertification and Drought, click here:

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ENERGY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of Hydraulic and Electrical Resources is in charge of energy issues. Recently this Ministry was amended to include the Ministry of Petroleum within its mandate, so that it becomes now the Ministry of Energy and Electric Resources.

The petroleum and gas sector is the responsibility of the Directorate of Petroleum (MoP), which is now part of the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic resources. The Directorate of Petroleum, responsible for licensing import activities, import and refining crude oil, import of fuel oil, and setting prices for petroleum products.

Electricity is supplied through the Electricité du Liban (EDL) which is an autonomous state-owned entity under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources.

The Ministry of Environment is responsible for the protection of the atmosphere from sea- and land-based sources.

The Law 5444/82 puts in place a Central Committee for Energy, made up of Ministry of Energy and Industry, Electricité du Liban, Ministry of Hydraulic Resources, the National Authority for the Litani River, Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and experts. However, this Committee is not active.

For project implementation, the Council for Development and Reconstruction is responsible for the management of foreign funds and the execution of large-scale projects in cooperation with the Ministry/institution in charge (Electricité du Liban, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Public Works, Ministry of Environment, etc.).

Regarding the regulatory framework, the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources drafts decrees/laws that are forwarded to concerned Ministries (Ministry of Energy, Hydraulic and Electrical Resources, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Health, etc.) for review and comment, and then to the Council of Ministers for approval. In the case of laws, draft laws are sent to the Parliament where they will be subject to an in-depth study by the Environment Parliamentary Committee. The approved law/decree will be disseminated through the Official Gazette.

When EDL drafts a project proposal, this project will be sent to the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources and the Ministry of Finance for approval. However, it is not forwarded to the Ministry of Environment neither to the Ministry of Health for prior review of the impact of proposed project on health and environment.

Authorities for decision-making are linked to central government.  Local decision-making takes place through Mohafazats (Governorates) that provide municipalities with decisions and laws required to be implemented. Then local authorities have the full right to enforce the application of these laws. In addition, they have the authority to set conditions for providing licenses necessary to implement regulations pertaining to energy.  

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Law 56, date 25/7/1997 relate to energy and energy related aspects of atmosphere and transportation: fuel derivatives’ specifications, this includes 14 annexes:

-           annex 1: liquified petroleum gases commercial propane;

-           annex 2: liquified petroleum gases domestic butane/ propane mixture.

-           Annex 3: automotive fuel-gasoline 92 octane;

-           Annex 4: automotive fuel gasoline 98 octane;

-           Annex 5: characteristics of unleaded gasoline 95 ron;

-           Annex 6: white kerosene (domestic).

-           Annex 7: aviation turbine fuel;

-           Annex 8: diesel oil;

-           Annex 9: Automotive fuel diesel oil;

-           Annex 10: Residual fuel oil;

-           Annex 11: asphalt cement grade 40-50;

-           Annex 12: asphalt cement grade 60-70;

-           Annex 13: asphalt cement grade 80-100;

-           Annex 14: Liquified petroleum gases industrial butane/ propane mixture.

Law no. 5509, date 11/8/1994: Definition of general regulatory conditions for fuel derivatives settlements, distribution cisterns, and stations for distribution, storage and filling liquefied fuel (butane- propane).

Law no. 368/94: Allowing the import and use of diesel-operating trucks and buses.

Law no. 6603/95: Defining conditions of use and monitor the diesel-operating trucks and buses, and the accepted levels and quality of emitted smoke.

 Law 5444/82: Set up of a Central Committee for Energy, made up of Ministry of Energy and Industry, Electricité du Liban, Ministry of Hydraulic Resources, the National Authority for the Litani River, Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and experts.

Law 567/77: Definition of items and goods allowed to be sold in gas stations.

Law 121/77: Establishment of a company to transfer liquefied petroleum through pipes from Tripoli and Zahrani reservoirs.

Law issued in 12 May 1928: Imposing tax on fuel consumed in Lebanon.

Decision no. 43, date 7/7/1997: regulating the manufacturing of bottles relative to liquified petroleum gases;

Law dated 11/8/1994: definition of general regulations relative to fuel reservoirs, fuel transporting trucks and distribution stations.

The only regulation that promote sustainbale energy identified is the tarification applied on the use of electricity. These tariffs are applied all over the country as following:

 Low voltage:

-           lighting and household use: 35 L.L. to 200 L.L. for kilowatt-hour according to use and capacity (100 to 500 kilo-watts);

-           Public lighting/ public institutions/ hospitals/ schools: 140 L.L. kilowatt-hour.

-           Crafts and agriculture: 115 L.L. kilowatt-hour.

 Medium voltage:

Subscriptions equal or higher than 250 kilovolts ampere per subscriber:

-           80 L.L. kilowatt-hour during late afternoon;

-           320 L.L. kilowatt-hour during night peak time;

-           112 L.L. kilowatt-hour for the remaining period.

Subscriptions less than 250 kilovolts ampere per subscriber:

-           150 L.L. kilowatt-hour for lighting;

130 L.L. kilowatt-hour for industry.

No other operational regulations or incentives were identified. On the other hand, the project on “Energy Efficient Buildings” (see below) will work on setting complete energy codes and guidelines for buildings, ensuring an effective verification and certification mechanism, and building capacities to develop energy codes for building and design and execute energy efficient buildings.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

An energy strategy was prepared by the World Bank in 1998 to assist the Lebanese Government in promoting an efficient operation and development of the energy sector to meet the energy needs of the country in an economical sustainable manner. This strategy proposed an investment strategy as well as measures to reduce impact on environment. Also institutional reforms, restructuring and reinforcement of EDL, and financial aspects were also suggested at short, medium and long terms.

Nevertheless, and despite the formulation of this strategy, priority is still given to a complete rehabilitation of the power plants and ensure electricity availability to all Lebanese regions.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

NGOs and scientists are mostly involved in formulating projects and programmes concerning energy.

NGOs, consumer groups, scientists and other major groups have minor influence on changing energy consumption patterns, their intervention is being limited to research. For instance, ALME publishes regular booklets on energy and environment as well on alternatives to fuel. These references are made available to public institutions to be adopted and implemented. Since its constitution, the Ministry of Environment considers these groups as the technical reference and advisors to all projects related to the protection of the atmosphere. 

Programmes and Projects 

The electricity sector in Lebanon is now subject to a major rehabilitation programme, resulting in renovating all its physical components, and upgrading its generating capacity to provide and distribute electricity to all Lebanese territories.

Major programmes are currently under preparation to be implemented in the following 2 years:

-           Investment Planning and Programming (IPP): Funded by the European Commission and implemented at the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, this programme aims at supporting the implementation of public infrastructure investments in Lebanon. With a budget of 3 million dollars, it is planned to address energy issues including energy supply and demand, renewable energy and transport sector. The EU funds will be allocated to support institutional and policy nature activities as well as prime investment scale projects in energy efficiency. This will be achieved by supporting project design and providing technical advice to concerned private and public stakeholders.

-           Project on energy efficient buildings: Funded by the consortium Fonds Français pour l’Environnement (FFEM)- Agence de l’Environnement et de la Maitrise de l’Energie (ADEME) and the Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie (ALME), and implemented by the Urban Planning Department and the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, this two-year project aims at developing and adopting energy codes and thermal guidelines for buildings to enhance energy efficiency and end-use performance.

- “Lebanon-cross sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operation”: This project, financed by UNDP and implemented at the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, aims at assisting Lebanon curbing GHG emissions resulting from inefficient end-use energy consumption in all sectors of the economy. This will be achieved through removal of barriers to the wide scale introduction of energy efficiency and energy conservation measures in all sectors of Lebanese society.

The Five Year Development Plan (200-2004) pointed out to the launching of a programme on the “promotion of the use of domestic solar water heaters in Lebanon” to be funded by UNDP (estimated total is 1.110.000 US$).

 The UN-ESCWA, Division of Energy, Natural Resources and Environment is carrying out a data gathering in order to launch a study relative to the regional approach for efficient use of energy.

 The Association pour la Maitrise de l’Energie et l’Environnement (ALME), the American University of Beirut, the Lebanese University and the National Council for Scientific Research conduct researches on best means to introduce and apply the best means of renewable energy technologies in Lebanon.

A common programme is usually applied by the Electricité du Liban to provide electricity to both urban and rural households in Lebanon, a priority is sometimes given to areas that were badly affected in terms of electrical availability due to the destruction of power plants by Israeli raids (Beirut, Tripoli, etc.), or to newly released areas of Southern Lebanon. Fuel is accessible all over the Lebanese territory based on the same price of distribution. 

The Climate Change Project, a UNDP/GEF funded project executed at the Ministry of Environment, was the only project design to target greenhouse gases issues in Lebanon. In fact, GEF, the Interim funding mechanism to the Climate Change Convention, along with UNDP, funded the Climate Change enabling activity in Lebanon (1998-1999) to build national capacity in order to fulfill its convention requirements. Three Main activities were undertaken under this project:

- A first National inventory of greenhouse gases for baseline year 1994 was developed;

- A national greenhouse gas mitigation strategy was prepared that comprises options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from main sources such as the energy sector, waste sector, industrial sector and the forestry as a potential sink of CO2.

- Lebanon’s vulnerability was assessed to climate change. This analysis comprised the terrestrial ecosystem (forestry, protected areas and agricultural crops), the marine ecosystem, coastal zones and water resources.

The outcomes of this project haven’t been materialized yet.

The UNDP project on Lebanon-cross sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operation aims at assisting Lebanon curbing GHG emissions resulting from inefficient end-use energy consumption in all sectors of the economy. This will be achieved through removal of barriers to the wide scale introduction of energy efficiency and energy conservation measures in all sectors of Lebanese society.

Status

Attempts are now being made by the Ministry of Environment to propose alternatives to the use of leaded fuel in the transport sector, still nothing is being approved by the Council of Ministers for potential adoption. 

Lebanon is not an energy producing country, it is rather a heavy importer of energy sources (import more than 97% of fossil fuel).  Lebanon is thus highly affected by changes occurring at global level, since the country is not a producer, thus importing all of its needs. Therefore, any increase in international oil prices will cause the country’s fuel bill to rise substantially.  

Until 1998, the government retained a monopoly over the petroleum market, but a number of private companies have subsequently been authorized to import and distribute petroleum. A total of 21 companies are importing pertroleum in addition to the government and large industries. In addition to importing companies, 84 private companies are involved in the distribution of petroleum products to end-users. 

On the other hand, very few companies are still in the business of solar energy technologies. Out of more than 20 companies still registered, only a third continued to be operational, due to many obstacles mainly the lack of support form the government side.

Unleaded gasoline has been introduced, but is not much used. For power generation emission control, $110 million is earmarked, but no implementation has yet been initiated.

Until 1990, most of the Lebanese areas were deprived from electricity. Since 1993, the electricity is enhanced in terms of availability to households and industrial complexes.

Until now, electricity provision is still considered insufficient or bit expensive, especially for the private sector. Because EDL was unable to continuously provide electricity, many domestic, industrial and commercial users have supplemented EDL supplies with their own private generators. In fact many industries started to be electricity self-sustained due to the high EDL tariffs during peak hours (see below), which is equivalent to 3 times the cost of electricity self-produced. Adding to that the frequent shortage lead to numerous stops in the industry’s process, resulting in product loss and equipment damages.

Finally, the Lebanese market is marked by an expansion of generator use. Whether residential or industrial, this tendency continued long after the war ended, as government electricity remains expensive and often unreliable. The use of EDL electricity and privately owned generators is an attempt to reduce energy fees.

The following table summarizes the fluctuations in consumption patterns of energy for year 1997 till August 2000, knowing that Lebanon consumes the totality of the quantities imported.

Gas (Tons)

Fuel (Tons)

Diesel (Tons)

Kerosene (Tons)

Fuel oil
(Tons)

Asphalt
(Tons)

Total

EDL

Local market

Private sector

Local market

EDL

2000 (till August)

101 191

860 963

357281

468601

82 201

41 892

106 597

895 640

45 856

2 960 222

1999

135 269

319905 (92 octane)
764 965 (98 octane)
259 226 (unleaded)

88111.216

866969.921

126 166

91 162

216697.201

1217218.938

83270

4 961965.276

1998

138 000

447 073 (92 octane)

742181 (98 octane)

222502 (unleaded)

543 275

881 343

106 881

 

148 648

1 439 732

109 535

4 779170

1997

141 241

1 320 000

337 374

670 365

108 454

 

338 053

1 466942

87 585

4 837789

Sources: Department of Energy, Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, (October 2000).

The Lebanese market especially through the war witnessed an expansion of solar companies exceeding 35 companies in the eighties. Presently, only few companies remain active, offering local or imported products. The main group targeted being the residential sector representing 60% to 70% of total sales, followed by hotels then hospitals.

The first observations showed the negative attitude of consumers for adopting solar energy systems and the carelessness of the government towards assisting the solar energy market, which is especially translated by a high tax imposed on this industry. During the last years, the number of manufacturing firms or businesses in the solar sector declined due to various technical and social conditions.

Challenges

Energy sources are considered the primary sources of pollution in Lebanon. Industry, energy and transportation contribute almost equally to emissions of CO2 and Total Suspended Particulate, while industry and energy are the primary sources of SO2 emissions and transportation is the primary source of NOx and lead emissions. Vehicle emissions, particularly in urban areas, are causing elevated regional ozone concentrations, especially during hot days when pollutants are trapped and photosynthesized due to air temperature inversion. Ambient sulfur dioxide concentrations were measured near the Jiyeh and Zouk power plants revealed that these concentrations are higher than the annual average standard of 75µg/m3 in Lebanon. These concentrations were also recorded in the area neighboring Zouk power plant, an area with high population density.

These levels of pollution have an adverse impact on health and economy. A study undertaken by Harvard Institute and the Ministry of Environment reported that approximately 15% of total hospital admissions are related to respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, and around 20.000 admissions to hospitals are due to air pollutants. This study estimated the social and economical impacts to reach 130 million US$ in Beirut, based on an average concentration of 200 µg/m3.

An immediate action to enhance transport system quality is considered as a priority to reduce the levels of pollution in urban areas.

 

Although a country like Lebanon could represent an important potential for the development of renewable energy sources, a multitude of obstacles hinders its application. The project document of the UNDP project on Lebanon-cross sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operation listed these obstacles as follows:

-           Information barriers:

-           Shortage of data on patterns of end-use energy consumption in all sectors of the economy;

-           Lack of documentation regarding the economic, environmental and social implications of end-use energy conservation on a national as well as on a sectoral level.

-           Awareness barriers:

-           Decision maker skepticism about the social, environmental and economic benefits, resulting from the introduction of energy conservation measures and policies;

-           As a result of lack of institutional point responsibility as well as relatively low energy pricing, a low level of general and specific awareness and motivation exists on the part of both consumers and industrials and commercial managers towards energy efficiency.

-     Lack of awareness relative to the advantages and uses of solar energy in specific, and environmentally friendly applications in general.

-           Institutional barriers:

-           Absence of institutional focus: there is no entity with the mandate or responsibility to monitor the nation’s efficiency and to design policies and programmes to improve it.

-           No national explicit policy currently exists to promote more efficient use of energy.

-           Capacity barriers:

-           Throughout Lebanon, and especially within the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources, there are very few people who are knowledgeable about energy efficiency. This covers all aspects of efficiency to manufacturing and labeling of efficient products to identifying and implementing potential measures.

-           Insufficient capacity among relevant government and private entities to audit, monitor and plan energy efficiency options and interventions.

-           Technical barriers:

-           Buildings, and especially old ones, are not designed to facilitate the installation of solar energy systems.

-           Water pressure is often too low to help the good operation of the system.

Lack of required know-how by some companies working in the solar energy field, leading to incorrect or poor installation, thus a negative image is taken on solar energy systems.

In addition to the barriers/challenges mentioned in the previous question, the same project document of the UNDP project on Lebanon-cross sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operation pointed out to major financial challenges as being:

The unavailability of financing. There are no dedicated schemes or special incentives provided for energy efficiency initiatives. This is especially important due to the high capital investment costs needed for some interventions that require the installation of specialized equipment.

-           With insufficient financial incentives to invest in energy efficiency equipment, no local market has developed for energy efficient measures and equipment.

-           No market currently exists for energy efficiency services. 

 On the other hand, the study made by Envirotech (consulting firm) on the energy sector in Lebanon: preparedness of the market to adopt energy saving techniques and renewable energy sources reveals other financial challenges pertaining to solar energy techniques in specific. According to the study, solar panels used for heating purposes:

-           Products remain too expensive to be affordable by everybody;

-           Solar energy equipment are classified in the same way as any other electronic equipment, thus high taxes are imposed on such products.

As for the solar panels used for central heating purposes, these systems could be used for heating a facility only during wintertime. Thus, in a warm country like Lebanon, their usage will be limited to a very short time, in which savings could be made. Thus, the payback period for such products can prove very long, rendering the whole idea sometimes uninteresting.

Finally, the photovoltaic systems used to generate electricity are still occupying a very minimal portion of solar energy market. This is mainly due to high investments needed for such systems.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

A UNDP funded project executed at the Ministry of Environment, released “the good housekeeping guide”, a first environmental management guideline aiming at improving economic efficiency, reducing the production cost and enhancing the overall productivity of Lebanese firms. Translated into Arabic, the guideline contains main elements related to energy saving techniques set up in the form of checklists. The guideline’s use is left optional, depending on the industry and not yet enforced by the Ministry of Environment. 

The Green Line is a national NGO aiming among its objectives to highlight to the public at large the dangers resulting from the use of fuel that adversely affect health and environment.

It is also expected that the “Energy Efficient Buildings” project will work on disseminating information tools and increasing public and policy-makers’ awareness of cost-effective energy-efficient building material, methods and designs, as well as energy efficient measures in buildings.

The following examples were extracted from the guidebook “Environmental education: curriculum and goals”- Pre-university levels. This guidebook was published by the Ministry of Education and disseminated to all schools in 1998 based on law no. 73/M/98, date 13/11/1998. It is to note that this law obliges schools (private and public), publishing houses, and schoolbook writers to abide by the obligations included in this law. The energy and natural resources are tackled in primary (3 sessions) and secondary schools (1 session) under the general title of the “natural environment”. 

Content

Session One
Year: 1st, 2nd, 3rd

Session 2
Year: 4th, 5th, 6th

Session One
Year: 7th, 8th, 9th

Secondary level
Year: 10th, 11th, 12th

* Energy and Natural resources. - Relation between movement and work with energy.
- Food as a source of primary energy for humans and animals.
- Nature is the only source for energy.
- Raw materials existing in Lebanon.
- Renewable and non-renewable resources.
- Sustainable development.
- Sustainable energy use.
- Use of non-polluting energy.
- Energy classification: - Chemical, thermal, etc.
- Classification of natural resources into:
Renewable and non-renewable.
- Sustainable use of energy.
- The environmental concept of the five resources: substance, energy, scope, time and diversity.
- Alternative non-polluting energy.

Ministry of Education- The guidebook "Environmental education: curriculum and goals"- Pre-university levels – 1998.

Information 

Energy-related information is obtained from the Directorate of Energy and the Electricité du Liban. Additional data is gathered from the Council for Development and Reconstruction, the Ministry of Environment, ALME and some universities. However, data relative to monitoring the air pollution is not accessible on the national level, due to limited available funds that hindered so far making measurement sampling in different areas in Lebanon (other than Beirut and areas neighboring power plants and cement factories). It is expected that the equipment for measuring stack air emissions will assist in obtaining accurate data in various areas in Lebanon. 

Data is usually obtained through visits and interviews made to the concerned ministry/institution, and review of available documents.

Energy-related information is usually disseminated through:

-           Conferences organized by the Directorate of Energy and Electricité du Liban;

-           Council for Development and Reconstruction progressive reports and website: www.cdr.gov.lb;

-           Ministry of Environment through reports forwarded to conventions ratified by Lebanon, filling questionnaires, participation in national and international conferences and seminars, its library as well as its web sites;

-           Publications of the Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie et de l’Environnement (ALME) (published in French and English);

-           Annual reports of funding agencies: UNDP; EU; Worldbank; etc.

 

And the following web sites:

-           Ozone depleting substances: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/ozone.

-           Climate Change: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/climate.

-           UNDP website: www.undp.org.lb

-   ALME: www.almee.org 

Available data on energy issues are available for public use through:

1-      The public library established at the premises of the Ministry of Environment (from 8.00 a.m. till 14.00 p.m. daily, except Sundays);

2-      UNDP and UN-ESCWA libraries;

3-      Publications of the Association Libanaise pour la Maitrise de l’Energie et de l’Environnement (ALME) (published in French and English)

4-      Websites:

-           Ozone depleting substances: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/ozone.

-           Climate Change: www.moe.gov.lb/moe/climate.

-           UNDP website: www.undp.org.lb

-           www.almee.org 

 

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

The Five Year Development Plan prepared by CDR outlined the following project to be financed between 2000 and 2004 on the electricity sector:

-           Removal of the remaining transmission bottlenecks: 12.000.000 US$ (foreign fund);

-           Removal of distribution bottlenecks that contribute to regional gaps in electricity consumption: 23.000.000 US$ (government fund);

-           Power sector restructuring and improvement of EDL’s profitability and institutional capacity of total amount corresponding to 13.090.000 US$, that includes:

-           Technical assistance and Development: 5.000.000 US$ (government fund);

-           IPP consultancy for energy: 3.090.000 US$ (foreign fund)

-           Review of tariff structure for business customers (study): 500.000 US$ (EU);

-           Support and Development of environmentally friendly energy sources: 8.110.000 US$, including:

-           Rehabilitation and modernization of hydroelectric plants for ONL: 7.000.000 US$ (government spending);

-           Promotion of the use of domestic water solar heaters in Lebanon- project at initial phases of formulation: 1.110.000 US$ (UNDP). 

- Electrical infrastructure (10 year plan of the Ministry of Hydraulic and Energy Resources): 10.000.000 US$ (public funding);

Projects to be financed by the Private sector (BOT): 681.000.000 US$, including:

-           New connections: 75.000 US$;

-           Syrian-Lebanon Gas pipeline: 206.000.000 US$;

Construction of the Liquid Natural Gaz Terminal at Selaata-Batroun: 400.000 US$.

In addition, several projects are funded (or in the process of being funded) some of them as a result to the First National Communication report undertaken by the Climate Change Project (1997-1999).

GEF: - Lebanon cross-sectoral energy efficiency and removal of barriers to ESCO operations

-           Energy Conservation Center (4 million US$).

-           Capacity building for the adoption and the application of energy codes for buildings: 500.000 US$.

UNDP: Climate Change Project (292.000 US$).

METAP/ Harvard Institute: Air pollution in Lebanon (15.000 US$).

FFEM/AFD/ALME: Building energy efficiency in Lebanon (5.700.000 French francs).

Top-Up funding, Climate Change enabling activity, additional financing for capacity building in priority areas (100.000 US$).

The Lebanese Government is deploying all possible efforts to attract investment in this respect. However, these efforts are not all oriented towards sustainable energy use and conservation (see question no. 35), a large part of these investments is currently needed to build infrastructure required to upgrade the energy management in general.

Cooperation

Lebanon ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on 15 December 1994 and has begun to respond to the obligations of the convention with assistance from the Global Environment Fund (GEF). A project will be executed for Building Capacity for the Greenhouse Gas Inventory and Action Plans.

Cooperation is highly active with GEF, Fonds Français pour l’Environnment Mondial (FFEM), UNDP, l’Agence Française pour le Développment (AFD), and other international funding agencies. The above-mentioned activities come within an overall programme that would include formulating policies, research and technology transfer in addition to the capacity building component.

Lebanon ratified the United Nations Convention on Climate Change in 1994. Since then all obligations pertaining to this convention were fulfilled, mainly the First National Communication Report executed within the framework of the Climate Change project. As for the Kyoto Protocol, the Lebanese Government is still studying the possibility of signature and ratification after the outcomes and mechanisms of the mentioned Protocol are being clarified.

Lebanon is a signatory to Montreal Protocol. It is operating under the article 5, paragraph 1, of the Protocol since its consumption of ODS is less than 0.3 kg per capita. According to this signature, the Lebanese Government fulfilled his obligations regarding the freezing of its ODS consumption in 1999 according to the rate of years 1995/96/97. In addition Lebanon is obliged to reduce 50% of his consumption in 2005. It is to note that the Lebanese Government, represented by the Ministry of Environment, attends all meetings pertaining to Montreal Protocol.

Lebanon is a signatory to several international treaties and conventions, mainly:

  1. The Lebanese Government is a member state of the International Treaty relative to prohibiting polluting the Sea with fuel oil (Law 68/88 date 26/11/1966) that allowed the Government to sign the International Treaty of 1954 and amended in 1962 by the International Conference held in London pertaining to the same subject.

    2.    Law no. 9226, date 12/10/1974 allowing the ratification of the international convention pertaining to interfere in the sea in       case of accidents resulted or resulting in sea water pollution due to fuel oil, held in Brussels date 29/11/1969.

    3.    Law no. 13/83 date 28/5/1983 allowing the Lebanese Government to join the International Convention on avoiding the              pollution of sea waters with fuel oil, held in London date 3/11/1973 and the protocol relative to this Convention held in              London date 17/2/1978.

    4.    Law no. 28/73 allowing the Lebanese government to sign the convention related to civil responsibility resulting from              damages caused to sea waters by fuel oil, held in Brussels in 29/11/1969. 

As a party to the Mediterranean Action Plan, Lebanon has obligations to prepare for emergency response to accidental spills at sea. In this respect, an action plan was prepared to develop national oils spill emergency response capabilities. However, no measures have been taken to implement the proposed action plan.

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th and 9th Sessions of the Commission on Sustainable Development.  Last update: November 2000.

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FORESTS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

Decision makers include the Ministry of Agriculture, the Rural Development and Natural Resources Directorate, and the Green Plan.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The Ministry of Agriculture is responsible for the Integrated Capacity Building 5-Year Plan that was prepared in collaboration with FAO and other donor organisations, the private sector and NGOs. Tree nurseries were created in the different Mouhafazas and a decree was issued that prohibits cutting trees. Fine payments and even imprisonments are possible in case of violation. Towards the end of this program, ten million plants are expected to be available annually as of 1998.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

In addition to government organizations, NGOs, CBOs, and the private sector account for a large part of the efforts.

Programmes and Projects 

Annual reforestation campaigns also take place through NGOs and CBOs and with support from the private sector. A request by the Lebanese Government has been presented to the Friends of Lebanon conference hosted by the American Government in December 1996 for $10 million for an integrated programme of the following components:

  • Preparation of a detailed reforestation plan;
  • Preservation of an area of 5000 ha in the first phase;
  • Reforestation of an area of 4500ha.

The sustainability of all these efforts can only be measured with land resources data being brought up-to-date with modern methods.

Status

Forests in Lebanon are a high national priority.

Forests cover 7% of the country's surface. In 1982, FAO estimated the country's need for new forests to be equivalent to 200,000 ha. This would increase the forest area from 7% to 20%. On the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification in 1995, the Minister of Agriculture announced an ambitious five year programme of afforestation of 40,000 ha.

Challenges

Forests suffer considerable destruction as a result of forest fires. Unless an integrated plan to combat forest fires is set up, afforestation efforts may not be effective. Around 1,200 ha of forest trees are lost every year because of fire, cutting and urban encroachment.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: June 1997.

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FRESHWATER

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The following are involved in the coordination of water resources management and development: the Council of Ministers, the Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR), the Ministry of Hydraulic and Electric Resources (MOHER) and the Litani River Authority, which overseas water resource management in the Litani river basin. MOHER is responsible for setting of national policies, new major equipment, feasibility studies and new water supply networks.

Water resource management is also under the responsibility of 22 district water authorities which oversee all water resource management issues within their respective jurisdictions. A new administrative setup is awaiting final approval for implementation by which the country will have 5 regional water authorities in addition to the Litani River Water Authority. Three of these five will oversee all aspects of water management (including wastewater) while two of them, the Bekaa and the South, will have agricultural water supply administered by the Litani authority. The government decrees setting up the above arrangement are Nos. 9626-0930 dated December 13, 1996.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Enforcement of existing laws is lacking, e.g. to prevent wastewater to be sent down well shafts into the ground water. Efforts are being made at the Ministry of Environment to set standards for liquid effluents from industrial facilities, but enforcement will not begin in the near future. Lebanon uses the European standards as its national norms for chemical and organic contamination.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

At present, there is no national plan for integrated land and water management and development. But with the new water authority setup, the regions would have wide authorities of policy making which would allow in the future, for regional integrated land and water management.

Pricing policies

Water resources from the country's natural resources are allocated to various areas based on current needs while trying to take into consideration future projections. No integrated policy for water supply as relevant to economic development promotion currently exists.

A given water authority does have the power to raise prices after prior approval from MOHER. The current policy is to recover the operational costs within each authority while new investment costs being picked up by MOHER. A new policy will be in place when the 22 district water authorities are actually reduced to the five regional authorities whereby investment costs will also be incorporated into pricing.

Some water authorities such as the Litani look to recover complete costs when pricing for agricultural water. Some industrial facilities (and hospitals) do have water meters installed. For household use, the current pricing policies are to have one unified price/cubic meter/day for all household connections within a given water authority's jurisdiction. This fixed water quantity is set through a water gauge.

With the five regional authorities coming to existence, plans exist to install water meters to house connections whereby pricing will reflect individual household usage rather than fixed per day water supply. Price scales will reflect investment recovery. It must be noted, that installing water meters on a mass scale to households entails technical difficulties which need a long time to overcome.

Current policies do not take into account poverty. It is to note that the price of water is low within all water authorities compared to international standards; additionally, the existence of illegal connections to the public networks is widely practised in poor areas.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

In general, there are no mechanisms to provide for participation of major stakeholders in decision-making for water management. Policies are set by the Ministry of Hydraulic and Electric Resources, consultations infrequently occur with some industrialists and farming cooperatives. Participatory mechanisms are required for the implementation of assistance programs, e.g. through UNICEF or USAID, and only within these programs participatory and conflict resolution mechanisms exist.

The private sector is involved in water management only through consultants which conduct assessments and studies for government agencies. This sector could have a wider role when the new water authority setup is initiated. This new setup allows for water authorities to subcontract water resource management to the private sector.

Programmes and Projects 

No information is available.

Status

Freshwater is a top national priority in Lebanon. Water, particularly its quantity, is the most politically sensitive environmental issue facing Lebanon and the whole Middle East Region. It should be noted that the Litani is the only major river in all the Near East not crossing national borders. Water issues are tightly guarded by the Lebanese Government.

Freshwater supply and waste water treatment

Annual withdrawals of ground and surface waters are 40% of all available water or 900 million m3. Domestic consumption of water is 60 litres/day/capita. Much of the water supply is only chlorinated or not treated at all in cases where it is withdrawn from the ground water. Overall modern water treatment facilities are needed for surface and ground waters, although authorities consider ground waters to be acceptable for public use.

The Lebanese government does have plans to enlarge the water supplies available to the population through the transport of water through pipelines, such as the additional supply planned for Beirut from the Awali river.

At this time, there is no wastewater or sewage treatment at all in the country. Several primary treatment facilities with sea outfalls have been earmarked for the coastal zone and by the year 2002 all wastewater is planned to be subject to primary treatment. Secondary treatment plants have been earmarked for inland areas where the effluent from these plants will be used for specific agricultural uses. Technologies for primary and secondary treatment, trunk sewers and house connections are needed.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

There are no programs to raise awareness or enforce the conservation of fresh water. UNICEF and NGOs do run occasional campaigns on this issue while CDR is making progress in reducing losses in existing networks. Getting people aware of the importance of water conservation on a per capita basis would require changing long held water consumption habits and is considered a major challenge.

Information 

A major effort for bio-chemical monitoring of Lebanon's water sources was conducted by UNICEF in collaboration with AUB. 70% of Lebanon's fresh water sources were found to be subject to bacteriological pollution, mainly due to household effluents and industrial pollution. Samples for measurement are being collected every two weeks through AUB and the Department of Environmental Health. Also BOD in water bodies is measured every two weeks. Results will be available in June 1998 after a whole year of sampling.

All water needs information is collected by the various water authorities under the direct supervision of MOHER, and to a lesser extent other government agencies such as CDR. Needs assessments are based on projection built on international norms of usual consumption patterns.

The main sources of data for the evaluation of water resource quantities in the country are based, to a large extent, on desk research and literature review of sources prior to 1982. Empirical research is still lacking to provide detailed analytical information covering comprehensive inventory of water resources, particularly in ground water. Thus, the water budget is one of the major issues of political/economic debate with various studies producing surpluses or deficits in this budget.

Information is rarely distributed to the general public; concerned ministries would have access to information at the MOHER. However, information is available through academia such as the Ecole Superieure des Ingenieurs de Beyrouth (USIB) water centre; information on water quality management is available through UNICEF and The American University of Beirut. The National Council for Scientific Research (NCSR) also distributes whatever information is made available to it.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

Since 1992, $500 million have been spent to improve water supply, another $670 million have been requested for this purpose. In addition, $520 million have been requested for dams and water transport facilities and $735 million for waste water treatment.

From 1992 to 1997, a total of $320 million has been granted from external sources to improve water resources management and development. This is 64% of all expenditures in this area. Assistance was provided from the World Bank, the European Investment Bank, the Arab Fund, as well as from the Governments of Kuwait, France and Japan.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submissions to the 5th and 6th Sessions of the Commission on Sustainable Development. Last update: December 1997.

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LAND MANAGEMENT

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of Agriculture through The Green Plan, the Ministry of Public Works, and Directorate General of Urban Planning, are key entities while the Ministry of Environment has an advisory role. The European Union, UNDP, UNDCP, FAO and NGOs, CBOs are also involved.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

One of the main problems in this area is the scarce data base. Whatever is found tends to be outdated, having mostly been collected in the 1960s. Several problems plague the land resources of Lebanon, most prominent of which is the lack of integrated planning and management. Salinization from natural sources or as a result of irrigation is a major environmental issue for the future of the country. Ground water which originates from highly calciferous lime-stone formations is excessively used for irrigating the Bekaa. The irreversible reduction of vegetative cover followed by the disappearance of topsoil has resulted in desertification conditions in many areas. The unsustainable forms of land management, socio-economic policy and institutional factors are also a drawback. Crude studies have shown that localized excessive grazing in the South and North of Lebanon, in addition to the Bekaa and Arti Lebanon have caused the degradation of pasture lands. Excessive construction in the coastal zone and Mount Lebanon is a major area of lack of sound integrated management of land resources in urban areas.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

There is no specific international, regional or bilateral programme on integrated approaches to planning and management of land management. Some on-going projects indirectly lead to integrated land management such as the Baalbeck-Hermel integrated rural development programme administered by UNDP/UNDCP and the EU vegetation programme.

International programmes with NGOs and CBOs focus on terracing and reforestation.

  • $2 million from EU for a vegetation programme
  • $2 million on average per year from FAO, UNDP, UNDCP combined

 


    * * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997.

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MOUNTAINS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of Agriculture, through the Rural Development and Natural Wealth Directorate oversees this issue. Additionally, the Ministry of Public Works has authority through the Directorate of Urban Planning. Also involved are the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Displaced, Ministry of Hydraulic and Electric Resources, CDR, the private sector, and UN organizations.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

The major mountain systems in Lebanon are:

  • Mount Lebanon range to Litani excluding southern mountain area: 480,000 ha
  • Arti-Lebanon area: 187,000 ha
  • South Lebanon (upper Galilee, Jabal Amel): 70,000ha

Mountain areas development is administered through national reconstruction plans. No specific programme is geared towards mountain areas in particular but rather to rural areas in general, though mountain areas are mostly rural areas. Figures for indicators pertaining to mountain issues per se are almost non-existent, particularly in such areas as flooding, land slides, etc.

Social programmes going on in Mountain areas are:

  • Irrigation schemes through MoA
  • CDR executed school rehabilitation
  • Ministry of Health constructing new hospitals
  • Ministry of Hydraulic and electric resources renovating water and electric networks.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

Some steps are being taken to raise awareness among the population regarding general environmental awareness. A separate joint project for public environmental education by UNIDO/UNESCO/FAO exists. There are some social, economic, and cultural incentives for farmers in mountain areas to undertake conservation. The tree nurseries and agriculture cooperatives of the Ministry of Agriculture provide farmers with seedlings, plants, and fertilizers at low prices. Reforestation and public environmental awareness activities are progressively increasing through environmental NGOs and schools in collaboration with local communities.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

Funding is spread out through the various items of the National Reconstruction Plan Horizon 2000.

Cooperation

No information is available.



* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997.

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OCEANS AND COASTAL AREAS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

Several ministries and institutions are involved with coastal zone management issues, namely: Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Public Works, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Housing, the Council for Development and Reconstruction, and concerned Governorates and Municipalities. Added to that, other institutions such as the "Conseil Exécutif des Grands Projets" and the Investment Development Authority of Lebanon.

In the area of marine environmental protection, both from land-based activities and from sea-based activities, the responsible authorities are the Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Petroleum, Ministry of Public Health and the Marine Centre for Scientific Research.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Environment and the Marine Centre for Scientific Research are responsible for matters relating to the sustainable use and conservation of marine living resources (both of the high seas and under national jurisdiction).

No co-ordination committee has yet been established on the national level. The National Coordinator of MEDPOL, acting through the Ministry of Environment, was supposed to create this mechanism and play the role of facilitator among the responsible institutions and organisations, especially in the field of marine environment protection from land-based activities. However, this co-ordination was not achieved due to the lack of appropriate human resources capable to follow-up this matter.

On the other hand, the Code of Environment, which is currently in the Parliament for adoption, is establishing the basis for a Higher Council of Environment. This Council will be mandate to ensure facilitating co-ordination among all public, private, scientific and non-governmental bodies.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

Considerable legislation applies to the three issues areas covered in this programme area. These are discussed, below.

With respect to integrated coastal zone management and sustainable development:

Lebanon already has a wide range of sector-specific environmental laws and regulations, some dating back to the 1930s, and which require a lot of updating and integration within a well-articulated environmental policy framework. Generally speaking, these laws and regulations deal indirectly with coastal zone management. After the war, specific Decrees and Decisions were formulated to alleviate the impact of negative activities on the coast (solid waste, industrial regulations, health, etc.), but this was not considered to sufficient due to poor implementation.

Some of these coastal zone related laws and decrees are:

  • Decree No 4809, 24/6/1966: Coastal zoning (including zoning maps scale 1/20.000; 1 to 11);
  • Decree No 3362, 26/5/1972: Coastal Code of Northern Lebanon Coast (including zoning maps scale 1/20.000 and 1/5.000; 1 to 23);
  • Decree No 5450, 17/4/1973: Zoning of Code of Southern Lebanon Coast (including zoning maps scale 1/5.000; 1 to 32);
  • Decree No 4811, 24/6/1966; amended by Decree 4918, 2/3/82 (Beirut, zone 10: Zoning regulations of the Corniche area extending from the Bain Militaire to Raoucheh;
  • Decree No 1915, 14/9/1971 (master plan of Tripoli el Mina);
  • Decree law No 144/S, 10/6/1925 (Definition of the maritime public domain);
  • Decree No 4810, 24/6/1966 (Conditional use of the maritime public domain by abutting properties);
  • Decree No 7482, 23/8/1995 (Approval of the master plan of Sidon’s seaport extension);
  • Decree No 8304, 19/4/1996 (Conditional use of 8.300 m2 at Batroun, for a recreational touristic development including sports and swimming facilities);
  • Council of Ministers’ Decision, 13/4/1983 (Establishment of six public beaches).

With respect to marine environmental protection:

General laws were promulgated to control various types of pollution and which are applied on both coastal and inland areas. Unfortunately, these laws are still not enforced neither implemented. Examples on these laws are:

  • The Law No 974 executed by Decree No 8735, 23/8/1974 (protection of the environment from pollution caused by solid and liquid waste, especially from sewage and septic tanks. This Law obliges industrial establishments to purify their water before disposing of it;
  • The Law No 64, 12/8/1988 (making pollution by dangerous substances a crime punishable by hard labour, or even the death. This type of pollution includes changes in the environment, damage to man, flora, fauna, water and air. The dangerous substances are listed in a decree, which is an appendix to the law.
  • Decree No 10659, 21/9/1970 and Law No 1178, 24/4/1978 and Council of Ministers’ Order No 71, 1983 (pollution by chemical products e.g. insecticides, fungicides, chemical fertilisers, etc.)
  • In 1996, a decision issued by the Ministry of Environment promulgated standards for water, air and soil pollution (14 environmental media and parameters e.g. drinking water, bathing waters, wastewater, air emissions, etc.). However this decision was not effectively implemented neither enforced.
  • Lebanon is a signatory to MARPOL I and II whereas all signatory countries are required to provide reception facilities for Annex I wastes (ballast water). However, Lebanon has not equipped yet any of its ports with the necessary reception facilities. For that purpose, policy and studies on discharges of ballast from shipping and oil spills are launched, in close collaboration between Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Petroleum and the National Marine Research Centre. Results are still in their primary phases.
  • Also, the Code of Environment includes a chapter on marine environmental protection. Certain of the suggestions included are currently ready to be declared as legislation.

It is worth noting that the Code of the Environment, which is currently under discussion in the Parliament, includes the guidelines for a sustainable coastal zone management as well as the concept of all ratified conventions, international laws and standards.

With respect to sustainable use and conservation of marine living:

The conservation of marine living resources laws are mainly restricted to fishing regulations in the Lebanese Law, the marine flora being hardly mentioned. Some of these fishing laws are:

  • The Law published by statutory order No 1104, 14/11/1921, modified by Council of Ministers’ Decision No 138, 16/9/1983, which forbids fishing in ports, the use of products that anaesthetise or poison fish or pollute the water, and the use of explosives in fishing. It also forbids factories to let their waste flow into the sea.
  • The Law No 1/84, 13/6/1984 and Law No 14/50, 20/8/1990, which regulated sponge fishing. Statutory Order No 63/11, 16/3/1993 forbade sponge fishing for five years.
  • Statutory Order No 95, 9/5/1939 and the Law dated 19/11/1947, modified by Law No 1490, 20/8/1990 and by Decree No 11882, 3/6/1948, regulated river and freshwater fishing.
  • In case of the decision made by the Ministry of Environment (Decision 52/1) regarding standards on water, air and soil, implementation by industries remains voluntary.

A series of decrees are under preparation, such as the environmental impact assessment decree, land-use planning, etc.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

There is no specific national strategy or policy in this area.

The Ministry of Environment also conducted a national plan for industrial waste management (1996- 1997). Implementation of this plan is expected to start soon.

The Tourism Plan for Development and Reconstruction (1996) prepared by UNDP and The World Tourism Organisation addressed the Coastal zone management. It recommended the coastal freezing development for one or two years until a coastal master plan is established. This plan shall identify the following features and action areas:

  • Urban poles for tourist access and service;
  • Tourist sites of main and secondary importance;
  • Sites needing short and medium-term tourism master plan.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

With respect to the role of Major Groups in decision-making, oceans and seas issues are still limited to government level in the decision making process. As the municipalities were newly elected (last June 1998) in Lebanon, their involvement in the decision making process is still very limited. Non governmental organisations are involved in awareness activities while scientific institutions participate in technical consultation.

Programmes and Projects 

The following programmes and policies are relevant:

  • With respect to integrated coastal zone management and sustainable development:

The Biodiversity Enabling Activity Programme, implemented at Ministry of Environment, developed a national strategy to conserve, study and sustainably use the biological diversity. The strategy that was achieved in November 1998 includes a chapter on the conservation of marine ecosystems (including marine living resources) and the protection of the Coast. Implementation has not started yet.

A programme funded by the World Bank and designed for integrated coastal zone management will be launched in 1999. The programme consists of three sub-programmes that include:

  • The formulation of national, regional and local level coastal zone management program, strategy, plan, and coastal investment strategy;
  • Legal, regulatory and institutional capacity strengthening; and
  • Training in advanced integrated coastal zone management planning and management, and
  • Environmental Impact Assessment techniques related to the coastal zone.
  • With respect to marine environmental protection
  • With respect to the sustainable use and conservation of marine living resources (both of the high seas and under national jurisdiction).

The Biodiversity Enabling Activity Programme developed a strategy that includes a chapter on the conservation of marine ecosystems (including marine living resources) and the protection of the Coast. Implementation has not started yet.

An action plan was set for the conservation of Palm Islands marine resources in the context of the GEF Project on Protected Areas. Also, the Regional Programme for the Conservation of Wetlands in the Mediterranean will be implemented in two Lebanese areas: Aammiq Swamp and Tyre Beach, where terrestrial, marshal and marine resources will be conserved and protected. The Programme will start acting mid 1999.

Some of the major programmes that have been developed to deal with these and other issues include:

A programme for the protection of marine water from land-based sources is currently under way to be formulated within the framework of activities of the REMPEC/ MAP.

The Integrated Coastal Zone Management Programme will be launched in 1999 in the Council for Development and Reconstruction.

The Regional Programme for the Conservation of Wetlands in the Mediterranean will be launched soon in Lebanon. Activities include the protection of marine living resources in Tyre Beach (reserve declared by law) mainly from land-based sources.

A Coastal Area Management Programme (CAMP) will be initiated in May 1999 in the context of the Mediterranean Action Plan activities. A feasibility study is under preparation to explore local CAMP implementation in the area between Khaldeh and Tyre.

The rehabilitation of sewage collection and disposal has established nine wastewater treatment plants all over the coast (total cost is about 405 million dollars).

A National Plan for Industrial Waste Management will be implemented soon.

Status

Lebanon’s coast is about 250 km long. Urban areas stretch over 50 km of the coastline (21%), while beaches and dunes cover a total length of about 49 km (20%) and bare rocky outcrops about 11% (4.7%). Fruit trees on wet soil (primarily citrus groves) border the coastline over 34 km. In addition, large industrial or commercial units occupy about 24 km (10%), tourism resorts about 18 km (7.5%) and ports about 13 km (5.3%). Salines border the coastline over a stretch of 6.7 km.

On the other hand, coastal central Lebanon comprises 63% of the population of the coastal zone, North Lebanon 23% and the South of Lebanon 14%.

The percentage of the economy contributed by fishing and methods in place to encourage sustainable use and conservation of marine living resources.

Fishing statistics are rare. While there are an estimated 4,000 fishermen and crew, not all fishermen are Lebanese and not all rely exclusively on fishing as a source of income. Estimates on fish catches from the sea range from 3,000 to 6,000 tonnes per year. Fish catches from rivers are about 50 Tonnes per year (activity weakly developed, since it is considered as a sport activity). Six hundred to seven hundred tonnes are produced yearly by aqua farming. In 1997/1998, fish import was around 6000 tonnes per year, equivalent to 30 million dollars per year.

Fishing in Lebanon is entirely artisanal or traditional. Dragnet, trawl line and fishing lamps are the main fishing equipment used, even though law prohibits trawl line. The Lebanese fisheries have suffered considerably during the war. Explosives and toxic bait (lindane) were considerably used. Analysis of the population dynamics of pelagic and semi-pelagic fish has shown high death rates and very low average weights due to over-exploitation. Until now, no direct methods adopted by the Government were put in place to conserve marine living resources, however, since the end of the war, the use of explosives has diminished dramatically due to the Lebanese Army’s control. In addition, fishermen in the South cannot venture out at the sea for security reasons, a matter that helped indirectly in replenishing fishing stocks.

The impact of shipping on the sustainable management of coastal zones: The movement of oil tankers along the Lebanese Coast as well as docking, unloading and storage represent a potential oil spill hazard, with serious impact on marine and coastal ecosystems. As a party to the Mediterranean Action Plan, Lebanon has obligations to prepare emergency response to accidental spills at sea. But until now, oil spills response facilities do not exist in the Country. Fortunately, no major negative impact occurred apart from some very minor oil spills on the coast coming from the high number of petroleum shipping.

The impact of other coastal- and marine-based industries (including tourism) on sustainable development of coastal areas: Industries are considered as the major source of sea pollution in Lebanon. During the war, some industries were established without any permit, others obtained permits to locate in non-industrial areas. Around 20.000 units are located in the coastal zone. The scattered distribution of a large number of industries (cement, electroplating, fertilisers, food processing, tanneries, textiles, etc.) all over the coast resulted in coastal degradation in land use, water, soil and air.

On the other hand, the increase in tourism settlements has led to the privatisation of public domains and huge constructions are built all along the shore.

The primary sources of land-based pollution of the marine environment may be summarised as follows:

  • Industrial plants (tannery, steel, cement, fertilisers, food processing, etc.);
  • Tourism settlements;
  • Agricultural effluents;
  • Municipal waste sewage.

The primary source of sea-based pollution of the marine environment is oil shipping (very limited).

Other relevant issues include:

  • The presence of uncontrolled waste dumping sites led to negative impacts on the coastal area, and
  • Sediment extraction on beaches for the supply of sand to the construction industry that used to be widespread.

Sanitary landfills have been adopted to replace open waste dumpsites.

Challenges

Priority constraints include:

  • Lack of national planning authority: The Ex-Ministry of Planning, created in 1950’s, was not able to prepare a national land use plan due to political difficulties. In 1977, the Council for Development and Reconstruction replaced the Ministry of Planning, with duties not widened enough to include land use and planning functions.
  • The overlapping and uncoordinated environmental management responsibilities: The overlapping in institutional responsibilities for environmental management contributes to poor implementation; added to that the clear institutional gap in environmental management co-ordination.
  • The severe lack of enforcement of environmental regulations: Deficient enforcement is not always due to lack of clarity and internal inconsistencies in legal and regulatory texts, but it also results from institutional weaknesses, such as resting most if not all enforcement powers with the Ministry of Interior. As a result, line ministries lack the means to enforce the legal requirements falling under their jurisdiction.
  • Failure to establish environmental impact assessment decrees and procedures: With the absence of national EIA requirements, only projects financed by international donors appear to be subject to an EIA. Government and public institutions’ staff are not familiar with these procedures and do not have sufficient capacity to monitor implementation of mitigation measures.
  • The shortage in staff involved in this matter (especially on the institutional level) for implementation and follow-up: Public institutions and research institutes are understaffed and poorly equipped. Rather than calling on them to support policy development and implementation, it is often relied on private consulting firms.
  • Outdated and inconsistent environmental laws and regulations, with it required modernising them and establishing implementation tools.
  • Shortage in financial resources;
  • Lack in technical support and training.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising 

In 1998, a guideline decision was designed by the Ministry of Environment to assist industries in combating pollution especially liquid effluents that goes into the sea (mainly cement and fertiliser factories). Implementation of this guideline-decision is improving.

In 1998, the Ministry of Environment, environmental NGOs, schools and universities conducted The Big Blue Campaign. This Campaign is conducted every year to raise awareness for the safeguard of the Mediterranean Sea in general, and the Lebanese Coast in specific. Other minor campaigns were conducted in parallel by scouts, Red Cross and concerned NGOs.

SOS Environment (a local NGO) conducted an environmental educational training course called "Blue School", which focused on the importance of conserving marine living resources. This course was done in collaboration with the World-Wide Fund- Italy.

Greenpeace conducted water analysis for industrial pollution all along the coast.

Information 

The following national information is available to assist both decision-makers and planners working in coastal areas:

Sustainable Management of Fishery Resources

  • The available information regarding the fishery sector in general could be obtained from the http://www.agriculture.gov.lb. Ministry of Agriculture website.

Marine Pollution

  • Information provided by the National Centre for Marine Research and to a lesser extent from the Ministry of Environment.

Mineral resources

  • Not available

Living Resources Other Than Fish

  • The biological diversity report (prepared by the Ministry of Agriculture), which includes data about terrestrial fauna and flora; marine and coastal flora and fauna; aquatic fauna and flora; agricultural and livestock habitats and nature reserves; socio-economic factors affecting the biodiversity. The complete report is available on the Ministry of Agriculture website mentioned above.

Critical Uncertainties

Monitoring systems are not in place yet.

Geographic Information Systems have been used in various coastal management projects, including:

  • The regional environmentally assessment report on the Coastal zone of Lebanon produced GIS ARC/INFO land use maps, based on the CORINE nomenclature.
  • The Protected Areas GEF programme is currently producing land use maps for the natural reserves of Barouk Cedars, Horsh Ehden and the Palm Islands reserve.
  • The Remote Sensing Centre, affiliated to the National Centre for Scientific Research produced several types of GIS maps concerned with water pollution, green cover, etc.
  • Private consulting firms used GIS for studies on coastal land use and industrial distribution.

Information is available through a http://www.sdnp.org.lb Web Site developed by the Ministry of Environment, through the Sustainable Development Networking Programme.

The http://www.cnrs.edu.lb National Centre for Scientific Research is conducting a programme for Coastal Zone Marine Management that aims to develop an ocean data and fleet operations management systems. The National Centre for Scientific Research.

Other information can be available from the following addresses:

The Ministry of Environment will launch the Lebanese Environment Development Observatory (LEDO) that will aim to fill the gaps in key environmental data (e.g. air and water pollution levels, industrial wastewater, etc.) and calculate the cost of environmental degradation. LEDO will act as a catalyst for the collection of data, and work with other ministries, agencies and academic institutions to agree on a limited number of environmental and development indicators of relevant importance to rivers and seas in Lebanon. The Observatory will start acting end of March 1999.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

This programme area is financed by the following:

  • National budget of concerned ministries.
  • The National Centre for Marine Research’ budget allocated from the National Centre for Scientific Research; however this budget is very limited and insufficient.
  • External assistance (World Bank, Japanese loans, European Investment Bank, etc.) channelled through the Council for Development and Reconstruction which mandate is to co-ordinate and supervise projects and financing.
  • GEF Project on Protected Areas.
  • FFEM Project for the management of wetlands in the Mediterranean.

Cooperation

Lebanon is a party to the Barcelona Convention and its five protocols. The Convention includes an action plan and guidelines for the Protection of the Marine Environment and the Sustainable Development of the Coastal Areas of the Mediterranean, to be adopted on the national level. However, this action plan, which was conducted within the MEDPOL - Phase III activities, was prepared but never implemented, nor was there any follow-up.

Lebanon is a Party to the following Agreements:

  • Barcelona Convention plus five protocols;
  • United Nations Framework on Biological Diversity;
  • The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance Especially Waterfowl Habitat;
  • The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea;
  • The MARPOL Convention, Annex I and II;
  • United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change;
  • The Paris Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage.
  • BASEL Convention.
  • MEDPOL activities in the framework of the Mediterranean Action Plan (land based activities);
  • Convention on Biodiversity

 

 

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This information was provided by the Government of Lebanon to the seventh session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development. Last update: April 1999.

To access the Web Site of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, click here:

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TOXIC CHEMICALS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of the Environment (MoE) is the lead agency in decision making; implementation is a collaboration between MoE and the Ministry of Industry. Also involved are the Lebanese Industrial Association and national and international NGOs such as Green Peace.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Toxic chemicals are a high national priority in Lebanon. Large quantities of toxic chemical substances are imported into the country for national use in industries. The management of these substances is limited to customs and MoE at points of entry. All other operations that follow do not conform to international standards and are poorly managed. There is sufficient staffing and lab equipment in the private sector, but these resources are not being used due to lack of regulations. For these reasons, Lebanon has a major problem related to toxic waste management.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

The private sector provides financing for the dumping of the toxic waste produced by it.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

 

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This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997.

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WASTE AND HAZARDOUS MATERIALS

Solid Waste and Sanitation

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of the Environment (MoE) and CDR oversee solid waste. MoE, CDR and Ministry of Hydraulic and Electric Resources are in charge of waste water.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

The MoE plans to adopt the following for all solid waste treatment facilities: sorting for recycling, composting, bailing, incineration to a limited extent, and sanitary landfilling in compliance with geotechnical standards.

The master plan includes the rehabilitation of waste water drainage, which will mitigate the negative impacts of waste water on ground water. Feasibility studies were undertaken and sewage networks were installed so far in few areas. Others are still using collection wells which are a major source of ground water pollution. In both cases, treatment is non-existent.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Solid and hazardous waste collection and disposal services were severely affected by the war. Solid waste collection equipment was either damaged through acts of war or has deteriorated due to ageing and lack of maintenance. As a result, solid waste is dumped indiscriminately along roadsides, in vacant lots and irrigation canals causing water pollution problems as well as blockages in the irrigation system. Existing solid waste disposal sites are overfilled and waste from those sites along the seacoast are often washed away by the sea and carried to other countries. Industrial solid waste and medical waste are generally mixed with municipal refuse. Another critical problem is the illegal disposal of industrial hazardous waste from highly polluting industries (tanneries, paint, metal industry, etc.) and the disposal of thousands of barrels of hazardous waste imported during the war period.

Solid waste collection in Greater Beirut and a few areas of Mount Lebanon has been resolved, however the management and treatment of the wastes has not been initiated yet and remains an urgent issue. The MoE lately came up with an emergency plan to close the Borj Hammoud dumpsite and rehabilitate the incinerator at Amroussieh and the compost plant at Quarantina. Currently, some 1,300 tons per day are dumped at the Bourj-Hammoud open dump-site.

Waste collected at other Lebanese territories is monitored and contracted by local municipalities, in some areas waste collection has been awarded to private companies. The dumping sites at these areas are randomly selected and completely uncontrolled. Neither Environmental Impact Assessments nor Environmental Audits are being made in this domain. A Master Plan for Lebanon to properly manage the solid waste is of utmost urgency.

Challenges

All waste water is channelled directly to rivers and the sea. The second phase of the master plan includes the rehabilitation of waste water treatment plants, which will improve coastal water quality.

Other problems in this sector:

  • Master plan of reconstruction allocated few funds for waste disposal;
  • Unattractive financial remuneration for professionals;
  • Procurement of new managerial and technological systems is highly affected by politics rather than feasibility.
  • Sukleen, a private waste management company, has recently began door to door collection of waste for recycling/reducing purposes. A composting plant will start operation soon under the management of this company. These activities are taking place under the supervision of the Ministry of Environment. UNDP'S LIFE and UMP programs sponsored solid waste recycling programs in various forms.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

Projects are also financed by: the MoE, the World Bank, and the Independent Special Fund of Municipalities. The World Bank provided $55 million and HRC provided $22 million for solid waste. The EIB and Japan are also donors. $400 million for sewage treatment has been requested from the Friends of Lebanon Conference.

Cooperation

No information is available.


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This information is based on Lebanon's submissions to the 5th and 6th Sessions of the Commission on Sustainable Development. Last update: December 1997.


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Hazardous Wastes

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Ministry of the Environment (MoE) is the lead decision-maker and customs collaborates with MoE on enforcement at entry points.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

National and international NGOs such as Green Peace are also active.

International NGOs (Green Peace), local NGOs and the media participated in bringing up the issue of hazardous waste through daily follow-up and public awareness campaigns. With the support of Green Peace, a local NGO, Green Line, issued a book on hazardous waste and its dangerous impact on humans, animals and vegetation.

Programmes and Projects 

No information is available.

Status 

Hazardous wastes have a high national priority for Lebanon. The extent of hazardous waste imported into Lebanon during the war varies depending on the source of information from several hundred to 17,000 barrels. More waste has been imported into the country in recent years. A portion has been located, while the remaining quantities have not been accurately determined.

Aspects of hazardous waste in Lebanon include:

  • A bilateral agreement was signed between Lebanon and Germany to control import of used batteries in 1994 according to article 11 of the convention;
  • In 1994, Lebanon faced the problem of the presence of 20 ethylacrylate barrels which were eventually exported to France;
  • Lebanon has a major problem concerning the industrial waste of the Lebanese industries, especially because the necessary installation (recycling, etc.) for treatment of this waste does not exist;
  • The Lebanese Government passed the decree No. 22/1 dated 17/12/96 concerning the organization of plastic waste import according to the green, red and orange lists approved by the European Union;
  • Recently, preventive measures for limiting traffic of illegal hazardous wastes have been strengthened. A Government decree has been issued limiting the import of several plastic substances not previously listed in the 1988 law on Hazardous waste. Various wastes have been confiscated which originated in developing countries;
  • There is a lack of specialized experts and limited effective monitoring equipment;
  • The expense of retrieval of imported hazardous wastes is provided by originating countries;
  • Government financing is being provided for rehabilitation of hazardous waste dumps in Lebanon.

In cooperation with the MoE, the Lebanese Institute for Norms and Standards (LIBNOR) is preparing a study on norms and standards for the industry.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and their Disposal was signed and ratified in 1994. The latest information was provided to the Basel Convention Secretariat in 1997.

In March 1996, an agreement was signed by Mediterranean countries to eliminate twelve toxins including aldrin, chlordane, chlorinated dioxin and other toxic substances.

With support from the World Bank and in cooperation with the MoE, the Council for Development and Reconstruction has commissioned a feasibility study on biomedical waste management. It is foreseen to set up a treatment plant for biomedical wastes with the help of internationally expertised companies.

 

 

* * *

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: June 1997.

For direct link to the Web Site of the Basel Convention, click here:

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Radioactive Wastes

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The National Council for Scientific Research (NCSR) has a mandate to formulate safety standards and develop regulations and procedures for importing, use and disposal of radioactive sources and to develop local capabilities for monitoring doses and radioactivity in humans and the environment. The Lebanese University is in the process of establishing a laboratory for nuclear analytical measurement.

Decision-Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups Involvement  

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

No information is available.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

The IAEA finances:

  • $131,000 for the NCSR for regulations projects;
  • $101,000 for the Lebanese University for lab capacity building.

 

* * *

 

This information is based on Lebanon's submission to the 5th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997.

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| Social Aspects | Institutional Aspects | Economic Aspects |

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