Expanding Lebanon’s “temporary” landfills: an inevitability of incompetence

Yesterday, the Lebanese Cabinet of Ministers asked the Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR) to conduct a study on the expansion of the two landfills in Costa Brava and Bourj Hamooud in 15 days. An Environmental Impact Assessment before the construction of both landfills were not prepared and both landfills face legal challenges from the Lebanese Judiciary. 

The following two images are aerial shots from Google Earth showing the Costa Brava region before and after the landfill. The landfill is situated on reclaimed land in the sea. While it is not clear how the landfills will be expanded, it seems obvious that the Costa Brava will be expanded on more reclaimed land, while its environmental impacts are still unknown.

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Picture on left: March 22, 2016; Picture on right: April 11, 2017

The problem with this news is that it seems the current government is willing to do the same mistake every single Lebanese government has done since the establishment of the Naameh landfill. When the government declared the establishment of the two new landfills, they stated that the facilities will only be operational for 18 months or 2 years. This looks less likely now, and we seem to be on track for another Naameh.

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