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Lebanon News

Moqbel: Importing water discarded

Minister Samir Moqbel arrives at the Parliament in Beirut, Thursday, April 3, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)

BEIRUT: Lebanon has discarded a plan to import water from Turkey to alleviate its worst water shortage crisis in decades and resorted instead to digging more wells to siphon groundwater, Deputy Prime Minister Samir Moqbel said Thursday.

“Following a thorough discussion of the study prepared by Water and Energy Minster Arthur Nazarian, it was agreed that for the time being we will be dealing with water shortages through digging wells,” Moqbel declared after chairing a meeting of the ministerial committee tasked with finding solutions to the crisis.

Moqbel said work has started already on a number of wells, and that more will be dug once the geological studies are completed to identify the proper location of ground waters, fulfilling part of the needs.

“We also agreed on the need to follow up on the implementation of water saving projects, including building dams and lakes as mid and long-term solutions,” Moqbel said.

“What has been circulated in the media about importing water has been discarded,” Moqbel added.

Lebanon is struggling with one of the worst water shortages in recent memory, following an unusually dry winter, exacerbated by the influx of over 1.1 million Syrian refugees.

 
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