Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. The protesters outside of the Naameh Landfill have been quite active.

Yesterday, Tammam Salam negotiated a deal, requesting that the protesters in front of the Naameh Landfill allow the road leading to the dump to be open for 48 hours after promising that a solution will be found, and that a committee will be created to address environmental issues once cabinet was created. At first, the protesters accepted the deal, then they rejected it. Today on the news, it appears as though the deal went through, and the road is open for 48 hours.

I cannot confirm if this true or not, as the trash is still piled high in my neighborhood.

In any case, I cannot remember an environmental protest that has had such profound effects within days. This should indicate to all of us that we cannot allow our waste mismanagement to continue. There is much we can do with it. We can recycle a lot of it (and we have recycling plants, although they are not operational). We can process our non-recyclable waste much more effectively. Believe it or not, we have solid waste management plants that are not operational.

We can even create biofuels and generate electricity from our biodegradable waste. Given that we spend 18-20 hours a day on generator power, we could certainly use eco-friendly and cost-effective energy generation. We would both pay less and pollute less. Alternatively, to boost our agricultural sector, we could convert our biodegradable waste into mulch or organic fertilizers.  This is an inexpensive process, and a timely product, considering the state of agricultural sector at the present.

Come on, my fellow Lebanese. Let’s think about what good we could do with our waste. It’s about time we start thinking about the good we could do with our waste.

Dumping it is insufficient, and forcing citizens to accommodate five times the designated amount (it was set up to accommodate 2 million tons, the dumpsite actually accommodates 10 million) is completely unacceptable. I hope this is resolved in a fashion that is both environmentally friendly and sustainable.