Target: Bassam Sabbagh, head of Lebanon’s Ministry of Environment’s Urban Environment Authority
Goal: Commend Lebanon’s government for implementing an environmentally sustainable waste treatment plan
For the past 15 years, the landfill in al-Nehmeh, a southern suburb of Beirut, has created serious health and environmental hazards. Unable to suffer through these conditions any longer, residents recently staged a sit-in that prevented local garbage collection trucks from reaching and dumping into the landfill. Now the issue of waste treatment is back on the national agenda, and Lebanon’s government finally plans to implement an environmentally sustainable solution.
Since the arrival of Syrian refugees, Lebanon produces about 7,000 tons of waste each day. Each province treats its waste through its own landfills and sorting centers. Since the governmental resignation in 2013, the nation’s proposed waste management solution faltered. Following public outcry, a new strategy involving construction of new waste incinerators and recycling will be implemented. According to Bassa Sabbagh, head of the Ministry of Environment’s Urban Environment Authority, Lebanon “will use the latest generation of environmentally friendly incinerators, which are used in Europe.”
Sign the below petition to commend Lebanon’s government for taking control of its waste treatment problem and devising an environmentally sustainable solution. Waste doesn’t only affect human health, but also the environment, the economy, and tourism.
Dear Mr. Sabbagh,
Thank you for keeping environmental sustainability in mind as you develop a new waste management solution for the Lebanese region of al-Nehmeh. Waste treatment has been an issue in Lebanon since the 1990s, and remains a vital topic of concern still today.
I understand that the construction and implementation of the new incinerators will cost around $9 billion. However, much of this cost could be paid for by recycling portions of the waste and using it to generate electricity. Lebanon produces more waste now than it ever has before, since the arrival of Syrian refugees. As you have noted, waste affects human health, the environment, the economy, and tourism.
It is the responsibility of the Ministry of Environment to monitor and audit the effectiveness of this system. I am urging you to work with government officials at all levels to implement a system of cost recovery and payment of waste management costs. Please push the government to move swiftly in this regard, as residents of al-Nehmeh are suffering every day. Continue to consult with environment and waste experts to move forward with the most environmentally friendly and sustainable waste management solution for the future.
[Your Name Here]
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