Lebanon: A Greening Economy. By Dona Challita
lthough converting water, wind, and sun into renewable energy is cost-effective, efficient, and economical, a green economy is based on other sectors besides renewable energy. These sectors include green buildings, clean transportation, water and land management, and waste management. Lebanon has exerted more efforts to develop these sectors.
A book entitled “Lebanon: A Greening Economy. Prospects for 2020”, demonstrates that Lebanon is on the way to developing a green economy. It highlights the prospects in this regard for 2020.The decision to build a green economy has been taken by both the public and private sectors.
Dona Challita, the author, has recently launched her book under the patronage of the Ministry of Economy and Trade. She aims through her achievement to promote the culture of "the human right to a clean and healthy environment" as she said, through the use of alternative energy from water, wind solar as well as the sustainable transport such as electric vehicles rails and biking.
Razi El Hajj, economic expert and representative of the Minister of Economy and Trade said that the author has attempted to highlight the development of a new economic and environmental concept in Lebanon, and succeeded in summarizing the plans that have been conducted by both public and private sectors.
He also found out that the only way to achieve the green economy concept is through a national vision that encourages creativity in addition to finding support from various segments of the society. “For instance, it is important to develop training and skills to support innovation, and researches to spur green investments,” he added.
El Hajj noted that the Rio+20 conference, held in October 2010, encouraged governments to adopt this concept through the creation of an investment climate to attract projects, technologies and develop legal institutional and national frameworks.
Ziad Zein, Public Relations officer at the Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation (LCEC) at the Ministry of Energy and Water, summarized the initiatives that have been adopted by the Lebanese government, including:
- The completion of all plans related to wind technology, sun, and biomass.
- Building the first model solar field project in Lebanon, Beirut River,which has a capacity of 10 MW.
- The launch of a tender for the production of energy from wind ranging from 60 to 100 megawatts through the private sector.
-The application of the net metering.
-The installation of 3,000 lighting columns, working on solar energy.
-The launch of the national strategy with the aim of adding about 396 megawatts of hydro power plants.
- The distribution of 3 million energy-saving bulbs to a million houses.
He highlights the efforts made by of the Ministry in coordination with the Central Bank to provide soft loans at zero percent interest rate.
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STRATEGIES & PLANS
A fundraising event, entitled Think Green, will be held by Zero Waste ACT for all its business members on September, 10,2013, at WHITE, Dora.
The Green Mind Association invited all Green Mind Award Participants, finalists, runner ups and winners to the GREEN MIND DAY on Jan-16-2013 in Beirut, to create a platform where interested Venture Capital and Potential Investors met with participants.
A green initiative launched by Ashrafieh 2020 project aims to transform Ashrafieh into a tranquil and unpolluted area.Green spaces allow residents to walk and ride bicycles.