Riachi said that economically and infrastructurally deprived areas are in most need of funding for water projects. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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Lebanon witnessed an exceptionally wet winter in contrast to the severe drought which the country saw last year, a development which many hoped would help solve the country's chronic water shortage.Laws guarantee a tight relationship between water control and land ownership.Drawing from previous surveys, Riachi said that 75 percent of the Lebanese household budget goes to private water providers, with the other 25 percent spent on water from the government. Riachi explained that three main pillars of focus underlie the water situation in Lebanon: ownership laws, political discourse on dams, and understaffed public sector water institutions.Riachi stressed that politicians should be focusing on the consequences of laws that have crystalized the relationship between control of water and land ownership. However, the current political discourse is over increasing dam construction and privatizing water management. Riachi said that there are many dams under construction, financed through international loans, yet, concurrently, 50 percent of existing water networks suffered from leakages and needed repairs.Riachi also spoke on the consequences of water-intensive agriculture production.
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