Archive | Environment

Horsh Beirut is Open Again to The Public

Horsh Beirut has been closed down by the Municipallity of Beirut for several month now ever since a disease spread among the pine trees there and was threatening the whole area. Fortunately, the municipality back then took the matter seriously and closed down the park to treat the issue by cutting down and burning the infected trees, which eventually resulted in containing the disease.

Accordingly, Horsh Beirut has been officially opened again to the public as of yesterday except for some areas where the municipality is still working to clear the invasive insects.

For those interested, the park will be open from 7AM till 1PM on weekdays, and from 7AM till 7PM on weekends. Barbecue and Shisha are of course still forbidden inside, and thank god for that!

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Middle East Airlines Among the Least Environmentally Friendly Airlines

Earlier last week, London’s Heathrow Airport issued a list of 50 global airlines ranked according to how environmentally friendly they are, and our national carrier Middle East Airlines turned out to be among among the worst coming in the 48th position.

The airlines in the list were assessed based on 7 categories among which are arrival times, efficient landing approaches, nitrogen oxide emissions, and noise pollution. Therefore, this of course has nothing to do with travelers experience on board but rather with the footprint that airplanes flying out of Heathrow Airport leave on the environment.

The only two airlines that scored worse than MEA were Kuwait Airways and Israel’s El Al, while British Airways topped the ranking followed by Aer Lingus, Etihad Airways, Scandinavian Airlines System, Finnair and American Airlines.

You can check the full list here.

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What Are These Excavation Works in Ramlet El Bayda?

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Many activists have been sharing photos since Thursday of excavations works currently happening at Beirut’s last public beach in Ramlet El Bayda but nobody was able to explain their purpose yet.

Over the last couple of years there has been a lot of talk about the area being a private property and that a resort will be built there by Achour Development. However, right before the previous municipal council’s term ended last spring, it was announced that the municipality of Beirut will be claiming back the beach and surrounding land in order to keep it accessible to the public. News about the whole thing then eventually stopped circulating until these photos started surfacing online.

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Knowing that the “Byeirteh” list’s promise when they were elected was to keep Beirut for its people, I hope they were considering Ramlet El Bayda a part of the capital when they made their promise back then.

In all cases, I tried to reach both of Ziad Chbib (Beirut governor) and Jamal Itani (Beirut mayor) to know the purpose of these excavation works and will definitely post an update if they reply to me.

Photos via Lama Karamé and Joelle Boutros.

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Lebanon Ranked 3rd Worldwide in Pollution Index

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It’s good to know that all the effort we have been putting over the past year in piling up the garbage on our streets and then disposing them in the most unhealthy landfills has finally paid off! According to Numbeo Lebanon is now ranked 3rd worldwide in their pollution index right behind Afghanistan and Ghana.

And it isn’t like we have been trailing way back in the previous years, back in 2013 we were ranked just 13th but we eventually did some serious work and almost made our way to the top.

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photo via Al Jazeera

Update:

I didn’t notice this when I first shared the chart, but it’s worth noting that the figures are based on the perception of Numbeo website visitors and therefore the ranking is unreliable. Mustapha wrote about the whole thing on his blog and I recommend you check it out.

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The Garbage Crisis is BACK!

Everyone remembers that white powder we had become accustomed to last year during the garbage crisis. That white powder used to keep away insects, pests and whatnot. Well guess what? That white powder is back in full force, well at least in the Metn region, and it is a clear indicator that a new crisis is upon us.

Check these few pictures I snapped today during my morning commute (Mansourieh, Mkalles and Sin el Fil)

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