Last update:
3 November 2009
15 Thu AlQe'da 1430

Environmental Concerns

Some of the information and photos appearing in this page are courtesy of The Committee for Environmental Guidance (Tripoli)

Tripoli > Present > Environmental Concerns

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Please send your comments, suggestions, or contributions to: Dr. Ghazi Omar Tadmouri.

In Brief

Green Lebanon. That name was given to a country whose valleys, and mountains have been covered with carpets of green. Unfortunately, neglect, over-exploitation, urbanization, and unawareness caused subtantial detriment to the country's natural and cultural heritage. During the past two decades, man's uncontrolled activities and improvised, unplanned, and chaotic development have destroyed most of the Lebanese natural coastal habitats. This, associated with all sorts of pollutants, destructive fishing methods, intensive beach-sand extraction, construction along the coastal strip, seaside urbanization, extension of hundreds of pleasure jetties over the relatively narrow continental plateau, are presently threatening the very last natural features of the coastline. Such agression is causing great imbalances in the marine productive syatems leading its fisheries to almost total annihilation. In addition, this violent enmity aganinst Lebanon's coast has rendered the precarious littoral flora, of which many are endemic rock or sand flowering plants, extremely rare, or, on the verge of extinction.

However, within the last few years, the state, along with non-governmental and international organizations, have consecrated efforts to retain samples of the country's green splendors. By preserving various elements of the country's nature, they are able to introduce the Lebanese to their natural heritage and bring eco-tourism back to the fore-front.

The protection of coastal and maritime nature sites has become most urgent for their multiple interest. The main aim is to safeguard evidence of the original natural beauty and to conserve floral and faunal resources. This is vital for the natural rehabilitation of the succumbed networks of food relationships along the littoral and on the plateau, and for the restoration of living resources necessary for biologic diversity in the Eastern Mediterranean.


The Protected Areas Project

The project entitled the Strengthening of National Capacity and Grassroots in-situ Conservation for Sustainable Bio-diversity Protection, aims at protecting endemic and endangered species of flaura and fana, and "incorporating bio-diversity conservation as an integral part of sustainable development." The 5-year project focuses on the preservation and management of three demonstration areas: Horsh Ehden (Forest of Ehden), Palm Islands, and Arz-al-Chouf (Cedars of al-Chouf). Launched on November 15, 1996, the project is financed by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) through the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and guidance from the World Conservation Union (IUCN) with the execution of the Lebanese Ministry of Environment. The project's main goals are to establish nature reserves, train the work force and prodce promotional material for public awareness.

Photo Album
Aerial view of Tripoli and ElMina
Aerial view of Tripoli and ElMina (1990s) showing severe pollution of the coastal areas.

Centaurium erythaea (Centaury); a protected plant in the Palms Islands Natural Reserve.

Cackile maritima (Sea Rocket); a protected plant in the Palms Islands Natural Reserve.

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