Monthly Archives: December 2014

UN: Israel should pay for polluting the Lebanese coast


Source: Indymedia

Last week, the UN General Assembly passed a resolution calling on Israel to pay over $US 850 million in compensation to Lebanon for causing a major oil slick during its raid on a power plant in 2006. Four containers were completely burned leading to over 10,000 tons of fuel oil to disperse in the sea. The wind caused the fuel to move north reaching the Syrian coast. The spill has destroyed marine habitats and harmed the livelihoods of fisherman as well as thousands of Lebanese dependent on coastal resources. The resolution was voted in favor by 170 countries, six countries voted against the resolution while three abstained. A General Assembly resolution is not legally binding and it seems unlikely that Israel will voluntarily abide by this when they have violated scores of legally binding Security Council resolutions and broken international law on numerous occasions. Continue reading

Pollution in Lebanon, a result of lack of standards and enforcement


Source: Old Door Economy


Lebanon’s main obstacle in protecting the environment is its inability to enforce laws and prosecute violators. There is also an absence of a comprehensive environmental legal framework that can fully protect the local environment. Before 2002, the few existing pieces of legislation aimed at safeguarding the environment had been passed during the French mandate. In 2002, a major step was taken in with the issuance of Environment Protection Law No. 444, consisting of 11 environmental principles and forming the basis for an environmental legal framework in Lebanon. In order for it to become enforceable, many follow-up application decrees were required, some of which were passed, such as the decree requiring environmental impact assessment, while many more await adoption. Continue reading

Lebanon’s waste problem: no end in site


Source: Utilities ME

After last year’s waste crisis the government promised to shut down the Naameh landfill by January 2015. However, no suitable alternative option has been found and the closure of the dumpsite has been postponed until April 2015. With the myriad of political and security problems that Lebanon is weathering, the postponement comes as no surprise. But this inaction could lead residents of Naameh to return to their demonstration and close access to the dumpsite once again. Continue reading