Whereas the National Authority of the Litani River is concerned with supervising all the work carried out by the concerned authorities and stipulated in Law No. 63 of October 27, 2016, and coordinating efforts aimed at eliminating pollution, with the motive of stopping the environmental deterioration occurring in the Litani Basin and restoring the nature of the water to its basic nature. Starting in the spring of 2018, the Authority began implementing the task of governance and combating pollution of the Litani River Basin by monitoring encroachments in the upper and lower basins, updating information related to pollution sources, whether from sewage, industrial, solid waste or agricultural activity, and surveying all towns, industrial and other establishments. In addition to activating the legal, judicial and administrative measures taken against the perpetrators of water and environmental crimes, and implementing the process of removing encroachments on the expropriation of the national interest and the prohibition of irrigation canals and affiliated water facilities. she has. Within the framework of the plan developed by the National Authority of the Litani River to limit the pollution that afflicted the water resources in the Litani River Basin, starting from the upper basin area to the lower basin, the Authority continues to date the tasks of periodic detection associated with procedures for removing encroachments on public water property within the scope of the Litani River Basin. Litani in implementation of the task of combating pollution of the Litani River Basin, in addition to taking a series of legal, judicial and administrative procedures and measures with all concerned parties to complete the aforementioned task and pursue everything that poses a threat to the environment and water resources.
Monitoring the water quality in the Litani River Basin
Monday 12 April 2021
According to the authority, the water of the Litani River in the upper basin in the northern and central Bekaa still does not meet the bacteriological standards to be used to irrigate crops, according to the standards of the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), especially since the percentage of total coliforms and the percentage of heat-tolerant coliforms In some locations, it amounts to more than 200,000 colonies per cent milliliter, according to the periodic analyzes conducted by the National Litani River Authority, while the maximum allowable per 100 milliliters is 1000 colonies for total coliforms, 100 colonies for heat-tolerant coliforms according to FAO, or 1000 colonies for heat-tolerant coliforms according to FAO. According to the WHO, meaning that germs exceed all international standards that have been set for irrigation water.
The technical teams affiliated with the Litani River Authority continue to take monthly samples from the Litani River in its upper and lower basins, whose water has become suitable for irrigation and therefore to monitor the water quality in the Litani River. The following points have been approved as sampling points:
Litani River - Marj Bridge - before the confluence with Ghazil River
Litani River - Rawda Bridge
Litani River - after the confluence with the Ghazil River
Litani River - Al-Taybeh
Litani River - Mustardali
Litani River - the bridge's conch
Litani River - Zararia
Litani River - Al Qasimia
The technical teams also take samples from the irrigation canals from which the irrigation water is distributed to the farmers in the lower basin throughout the irrigation season. The quality of the irrigation water is monitored in the following points:
Al Qasimia Channel - General Distributor
Al-Qasimia Channel - Saida Branch
Al-Qasimia TV - Tire Branch
Ras Al Ain pools
Ras Al Ain Canal - Qulaila area
Taking preventive and security measures in the vicinity of the Qaraoun Dam
Wednesday 19 August 2020
The Qaraoun Dam is the largest dam in Lebanon, as it supplies water to hydroelectric power plants, in addition to many irrigation projects for the past 58 years. Thus, the Qaraoun Dam is one of the national strategic installations in Lebanon and one of the most important dams in the Arab region, as its water reserve amounts to 220 million cubic meters, its height is 62 meters, and its summit is 1100 meters long. It is a rubble dam with a concrete facade with an area of 50,000 square meters. It is of utmost economic importance as it is the source of water for the following projects:
Four hydroelectric power plants with a total capacity of 195 megawatts, along with all water intake facilities, including tunnels and pipelines with a length of 31 km and a diameter of 3 meters.
Three irrigation projects in the south and the Bekaa: an area of 2,000 hectares in the Bekaa Valley and 4,500 hectares in the south.
Canal 800 irrigation project: It is under implementation and will irrigate 13,000 hectares and will feed more than 100 towns and villages with drinking water.
And that any sabotage encroachment on this dam will threaten the stability of this dam and will constitute a direct threat to public safety because of the huge quantities of water behind it. Up to the estuary at Al-Qasimia near the city of Tyre.
Circulating executive mechanisms for dam emergency plans:
It is expected that this dam will continue to perform this function for a very long time due to the proper operation and maintenance of its facilities by the National Authority of the Litani River (periodic topographical survey to monitor the movements of the dam body, daily measurement of the quantities of water leaking from the breaks of the dam body, daily measurement of the water level in the underground wells Investigations in the vicinity of the dam, annual maintenance of the dam’s body, annual maintenance of the unloading sash, inspection of the dam’s body and its separators by means of a ROV device (Remote Operated Vehicle) to detect smuggling areas, which is provided to the Authority as a gift from USAID under the LRBMS project.
Recent seismic safety analyzes conducted by the Litani River National Interest Support Project (LRBMS) in 2012 by USAID, have proven that the dam is in good technical condition and will safely withstand a major earthquake without any significant impacts on the dam's structure. However, due to any change that may occur to the dam’s body from the inside, or an earthquake with a higher capacity than the dam’s carrying capacity, precaution is required through the creation of an action plan in which the National Authority of the Litani River, the Civil Defence, the Red Cross, the Lebanese Army, the Disaster Management Authority in Lebanon and society participate. Municipalities such as municipalities and residents of the lower basin of the Qaraoun Dam, as well as taking public safety measures by all the aforementioned stakeholders in anticipation of any failure, which may occur partially or completely for the dam.
Everyone agrees that the announcement of the aforementioned emergency plan may cause some fear among the residents below the dam. However, experience has shown many times that ignoring the possibility of disasters, because they are excluded, increases their effects and negative consequences, while raising awareness and taking some simple measures may prevent loss of life and mitigate significant material damage.
The present emergency plan was accompanied by technical, administrative and security preventive measures taken and/or requested by the National Authority of the Litani River, given the strategic importance of this dam, as it constitutes a potential target for sabotage or aggressive acts that threaten the safety of the residents living in the area of the dam’s valley, as any crack in the dam will cause A devastating water wave that affects all residential areas close to the riverbed, starting from the Watti Al-Sad area in Mashghara, Suhmur, and Yahmor, all the way to the downstream area in Al-Qasimia, in addition to the national loss of production for the projects mentioned above, and the tunnels between the Abdel-Al plant in the western Bekaa and Birket Anan Jezzine is a permanent target for military actions or sabotage attacks, especially since sabotaging the dam may lead to repercussions in the area of action of the international emergency forces according to Security Council Resolution No. 1701 and the area of the defense strategy.
The National Authority of the Litani River has requested written letters to each of His Excellency the Minister of Interior, His Excellency the Minister of Defense, His Excellency the Secretary General of the Supreme Defense Council, His Excellency the Army Commander, His Excellency the Director General of State Security, requesting attention to this issue and assigning the concerned security agencies in the immediate manner to secure protection for these facilities with The matter was presented to the Central Security Council and the Supreme Council of Defense as quickly as possible to take these data into consideration. The Authority also repeated its request to approve the establishment of security protection centers for the facilities of the National Authority of the Litani River, in addition to patrols, inquiries and investigations, especially in the Qaraoun Dam and its tunnel entrances and hydroelectric power generation plants. This is to avoid any security breach that threatens payment and public safety, noting that the Authority is ready to secure all logistical requirements for the guard teams.
In accordance with the decision of the Secretary-General of the Supreme Council of Defense and the General Directorate of Internal Security Forces, a fixed protection point was installed on the eastern side of the Qaraoun Dam, and the Authority installed a fixed guard point on the western side of the dam, in addition to installing cement cubes at the entrances to facilities and tunnels, and installing iron gates at various sites It is implementing a monitoring project using advanced cameras and alarms to avoid any encroachment on the dam's facilities.
However, the Qaraoun Dam still needs protection and security care by the armed forces, as the National Authority of the Litani River has confirmed that this current guard is a formality, and in turn it has taken the necessary and administrative measures through:
First: Circular to users regarding the protection of facilities and strictness in this (Circular No. 3959 dated 11/8/2020), in which it was stated: In light of the difficult circumstances that the country is going through and in the interest of the safety of facilities and in order to preserve public safety and in light of the reluctance of the security authorities to provide protection to plug the
Preventing the exploitation and use of water from Lake Qaraoun and the Litani River
Tuesday 25 February 2020
Based on a recommendation from the Litani River National Authority, a decision was issued by the Minister of Agriculture, published in the Official Gazette, banning fishing in Qaraoun Lake and in the course of the Litani River until it is proven that it is not polluted and is fit for human consumption, and until the pollution problem in Lake Qaraoun is addressed.
Likewise, the National Authority for the Litani River sent a letter to the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities on 25/2/2020 requesting a ban on fishing from Lake Qaraoun and the main course of the Litani River, given the proven pollution of the river and the invalidity of water investment due to its negative impact on public health, health and food security. To the Lebanese and spread epidemics and diseases.
The National Authority of the Litani River sent two letters to each of the Governor of the Bekaa Valley, Judge Kamal Abu Joudeh, and the Governor of Baalbek-Hermel, Mr. Bashir Khader, in which they requested the prevention of irrigation of crops from the waters of the Litani River and its tributaries within the scope of the governorates of the Bekaa and Baalbek-Hermel, and the need to ensure the requirements of health security, the quality of irrigation water and food safety in Framework for seeking and searching for food security.
Searching for food security in light of water pollution and erosion of agricultural lands
Wednesday 12 June 2019
The National Authority of the Litani River asked all partners to enforce and respect Decree No. 14522 issued on May 16, 1970, which regulated the distribution of the Litani River water and other available waters from various water sources between the Beirut-Damascus road and between the Anjar-Shamsine springs and the groundwater in the northern Terbel area. This road is in the central Bekaa for irrigation purposes.
She also stressed the need to take into account the decisions of the Supreme Council for Urban Planning in terms of classification pertaining to the areas served by irrigation projects, and to apply the purpose in terms of their use after they have been classified according to the comprehensive plan for arranging lands in Lebanon, as the lands targeted by current and future irrigation projects are in constant erosion as a result Urban chaos and the absence of organizational and legal standards for licensing, and in some cases building without a permit, especially after the buildings were licensed by the municipalities without referring to the civil planning offices in the districts, which turns agricultural lands, which spend millions of dollars to irrigate them, into urban and urban lands, which causes Waste of public money and waste of the national plan for comprehensive and balanced development, and the phenomenon of changing the classification of agricultural lands, the absence of protecting fertile land, not allocating it for agriculture and allowing it to be sorted into small plots and used for construction, which led to the loss of hundreds of hectares of good agricultural land used for construction and parking lots as a result of irrigation projects affiliated with the Authority. Extension of urbanization, especially in the coastal region. Note that this loss is constantly increasing and has begun to spread to new areas in southern Lebanon.
And she emphasized that the requirements of food security necessitate taking into account the directive plan for the districts of Zahle, Western Bekaa and Rashaya, according to the decision of the Supreme Council for Urban Planning No. 22/2019 dated 12/6/2019 and the decision of the Supreme Council for Urban Planning No. 28/2013 in terms of classification related to the areas served by irrigation projects and the protection of agricultural lands. And to confirm its classification according to this purpose, and the Ministry of Environment deposited the details related to the southern Bekaa irrigation project and the irrigated lands from the irrigation project at the level of 800 in Qalia, so that the agricultural lands included in it in the master plan project are protected.
The national interest of the Litani River was to take into account the protection of agricultural lands according to letters addressed to the civil organization and the relevant ministries and departments in a way that includes the agricultural lands served by its rent projects in the governorates of the Bekaa, South Lebanon and the Bekaa.
Believing in the importance of supporting the agricultural sector and ensuring a minimum level of food security, the National Authority of the Litani River took the initiative since 2019 to adopt a policy of investing all its agricultural lands in the south and the Bekaa Valley. In a first step, the authority took the initiative to plant the affiliated lands with grains, vegetables and fruit trees in the year 2019, and given the difficult living conditions that farmers are going through, the authority took the initiative to lease specific areas of agricultural land to enable them to improve their economic and living conditions.
It also created sites for agricultural experiments in the Ras Al-Ain area near the Ras Al-Ain pools, in Al-Khardali on the banks of the Litani River, in Al-Qasimia on the banks of the Litani River, and in Al-Zahrani in the expropriation of the interest near the new building to serve the subscribers and improve monitoring, control and distribution in the Qasimia irrigation project.
The total cultivated land of the Litani River National Authority has so far reached 1,447,904 square meters (one million four hundred and forty-seven thousand nine hundred and four square metres):
Real estate cultivated by the Litani River National Authority: Its total area is 381,781 square meters, three hundred and eighty-one thousand, seven hundred and eighty-one square meters.
The real estate that was included for farmers (within the scope of Bar Elias, Kafr Zabad): Its total area is 129,072 square meters, one hundred and twenty-nine thousand and seventy-two square meters.
The real estate that was rented by public auction to farmers (in the vicinity of Khirbet Qanafar, Jib Jenin, Lala): Its total area is 937,051 square meters, nine hundred and thirty-seven thousand and fifty-one square meters.
The crops were diversified as the following were planted: soft and durum wheat, olives, table grapes, pears, apples, peaches, nectarines, cherries, pomegranates, almonds, walnuts, apricots, quinces, plums, carobs, citrus fruits, cream, echidna, Avocado, beans.
Providing in-kind donations from the production of the agricultural fields of the National Authority of the Litani River Within the framework of the social responsibility of public sector institutions, the investment of agricultural lands and food security, the National Authority of the Litani River provided an in-kind donation of the production of its agricultural fields to all the General Directorate of Internal Security Forces, the Lebanese army, municipalities and civil associations, in addition to Providing an in-kind donation of the entire production of olive oil for the agricultural experiment fields of the Litani River National Authority in Lebaa and the rain-fed fields at the bottom of the Qaraoun Dam and in the expropriated lands of the Litani River National Authority, which are of the type of virgin oil (first class)