Tag Archive: electricity


Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. I am staring outside of my living room window, and wondering why all of the rain that is falling is going completely to waste. Last winter we had a drought. This winter we’ve had an abundance of rain–even floods–but it has yet to dawn upon us to conserve our water for such periods. Jeez.

If you watched Kalam al-Nass a few days ago, then you also heard that outside of the conflict in the region, resource scarcity as it applies to electricity and water demotivate the propensity to invest in Lebanon.

In a country where 300 out of 365 days are sunny, and where we have enough rain to harvest and re-use it, we have within us to change this. We have an enormous resource available to generate electricity, and we can significantly reduce our water scarcity if we were to use our water wisely. The problem is not our lack of resources. Believe it or not, we have resources. The problem is our inefficiency at utilizing them effectively.

My fellow Lebanese, it is time for this to change. It is time for us to invest in the development of green technology for the purposes of our economy. It is time for us to invest in green technology for the purposes of our environment, our health, and our development. We can do it, Lebanon!

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Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. If you’ve been following the news, then you are familiar with the debate surrounding our electricity problems.  Minister of Energy Gebran Bassil wants to lease ships from two private companies (one Turkish, the second American) that will provide our existing plants with electricity. Prime Minister Najib Mikati calls for  the construction of power plants on the basis that they are more cost-effective and would remain  under state ownership.

My fellow Lebanese, it goes without saying that we need a solution to our power shortages. Lebanon produces less than 1,400 MW of electricity, but the country’s power  needs exceed 2,500 MW. Besides, electricity rationing could increase in the  coming years as a result of population growth, and increased demands on our resources. So what do we do?

Thus far, this has only been debated in economic terms. Reports say that over  five years, it would cost $429 million dollars to lease the Turkish vessel, which produces 180 MW.  It would cost  $427 million for the same period of time to lease the American vessel that  produces 180 MW. A total of 856 million, and the cost of the leasing does not include the price of the fuel. Building a power plant would cost 480 million and it would last over 25 years. It’s amazing that these plans have cropped up now, of all times. Do you want to know why?

A mere four years ago, on 13 July 2008, at the Paris Summit Meeting of the Heads of States and Governments of the Mediterranean Basin, Lebanon pledged to have 20% of its energy come from renewable sources by 2020. It later reduced that amount to 12%. I see no sign of even that. We said that we were going to use windmill power. I don’t imagine that establishing a wind turbine farm and having it generate electricity for us with no environmental consequences is a bad investment. Think about the damage that both of these projects will cause. Tossing hundreds of millions of dollars into projects that will pollute our air, sea, and our health. Leasing the ships is not a permanent option; it’s too expensive to do so and it is not sustainable. Building yet another power plant is environmentally unsound. So why not simply do what we said we would and build up our renewable energy capacities? Hmmm? Any thoughts?

Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. Do you remember when Gibran Bassil promised us 24 hour electricity? When he said that we wouldn’t need to rely on generators anymore? When he said we wouldn’t have to pay two receipts for power? Well, guess what.  We’re still paying two receipts, and the amount is about to go up. Those who run generator companies plan on raising their prices; mind you, we already pay $100 per five amperes.  So, my fellow Lebanese, how do you feel about that ?

I sincerely doubt that any politician will successfully deliver 24 hour a day electricity to us. Sadly, given our endemic corruption, that seems like too much hope for. Instead, for our own sakes, I propose using solar energy instead. The price of generators is going up, and it is not cost efficient or environmentally friendly to continue to use them. We might as well switch to clean solar energy which pays for itself in five years, saves us money after that, and doesn’t pollute the environment. Can we trust them to provide for us, anyway?

Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. If you have been following the news, then you’ve seen the citizen protests regarding power-lines that are densely packed among residential buildings in the Metn and Kesrouan. Nor will these residents cease their protests; they plan to continue their protests in Aramoun, the North, and other areas as well. The residents of these neighborhoods have every right to be both afraid and angry. Let us examine why.

Power lines emit high levels of electromagnetic radiation (EMFs).  They interfere with cell functioning, break DNA strands, and erode the immune system. The initial symptoms of high exposure to power-lines are dizziness, fatigue, headaches, nausea and digestive disorders. However, chronic exposure to power-lines, such as that of the residents of these areas, yields far more serious health hazards, particularly among children, pregnant women, and the elderly.

These health conditions include childhood leukemia, other forms of cancer, depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, miscarriages, radiation poisoning,  genetic mutations, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia. The atrocious effects of power-lines do not stop here.  These cables can spark fires; they can even cause electric shock to persons or animals. They can also overload and destroy electrical equipment, such as our generators. In addition, because the radiation emitted from these cables mutates DNA, they also effect the quality of our vegetation and produce. Chronic exposure to radiation also create infertile soil, which is very difficult to reverse. However, the urgent needs of the citizens have gone unheeded.

Lebanon, these power-lines in the Metn and Kesrouan are very, very, dangerous. Take a look at them:

 

Note that these are strung between residential buildings. Fun.

My fellow Lebanese, these cables cause harm to all of us in terms of our health and environment. Fortunately, there is an easy, clean, and inexpensive way to literally wipe out these problems. Investing in renewable energy. Using solar power has no harmful health hazards, does not hurt the environment, is cheaper in the long run, and is a successful long-term investment. We have only to gain by investing in renewable energy. Lebanon, it is time for us to advocate for these power-lines to come down and to use cleaner and healthier sources of electricity. We can do it, Lebanon!!

Hello, Lebanon. It’s me, your friendly Green Patriot. Did anyone see the news tonight? If so, you heard exactly what I heard; politicized comments starting to emerge regarding our electricity.
 
 As many of us know, our parliament passed a bill in August of 2010 which calls for the creation of a treasury and a committee to oversee the exploration and oil drilling in Lebanese waters. Currently, the maritime borders of Lebanon, Israel, and Cyprus are being studied by the U.N. for this purpose; to decide to the water and economic rights of each country. It is essential that each country know its rights and borders.  That said, this process is getting hairy. Minister of Energy Gibran Bassil went to Damascus, Syria on Tuesday. Yesterday he was asked as to whether or not President Bashar al-Assad requested that Lebanon “grant the priority” to a Russian company interested in Lebanon’s oil resources. He replied that President Assad did not ask him about this at all. 
 
Where the truth of the matter is we do not know. What we do know, however, is that oil drilling can have devasting effects on the sea, on marine life, and is a not a renewable source of energy. We also know that our energy problem is becoming politicized, and that foreign intervention in this matter, be it by Syria, Russia, the U.S., or anywhere else,  will not improve our situation. What we need are clean, renewable sources of energy that come from our own nation. Do we need more political bickering? Do we need more foreign intervention? Do we need more environmental pollution when we have a source of renewable energy right under our noses? 

 
Lebanon, WE HAVE WHAT WE NEED. We have the potential to use solar energy! If an individual installs solar energy panels, the device pays for itself in five years, and then you start to save money. You no longer need a generator, or pay as much for electricity. In addition, if this is widespread and publicly implemented, we spare ourselves the politicized problems we are facing regarding energy. More and more people are installing solar panels, and are better off for it. It is time for us to invest in our own clean resources. We can do it, Lebanon!!