Finally! The Naameh landfill was closed on Friday, 17 July 2015. It only took the Lebanese government about 11 years, an extra 13 tons of waste, and several protests by residents of the area to finally shut it down.
But as we all know, our very "efficient" government is incapable of actually resolving the issues our country is faced with. For example, according to a report by LBCI, the Naameh landfill was opened in 1998 as an alternative site to the overfilled Bourj Hammoud dump. This was supposed to be a temporary solution and the Naameh landfill was scheduled for closure in 2004. But the government repeatedly postponed the closure until February 2014, when they announced that the Naameh landfill was scheduled for closure on 15 January 2015. Then that didn’t happen either.
As would follow logically, the government was supposed to identify an alternative disposal site when they decided to shut down the Naameh landfill, but they failed to do even that. So now, Sukleen, Lebanon’s waste management company, has suspended garbage collection because the Naameh landfill has been closed and there’s nowhere else to dump trash.
Now, thanks to our very proficient government, we have mini-landfills all over the country. You can find these mini-landfills at your nearest Sukleen dumpster. And to make things worse, Environment Minister Mohammad Machnouk won’t be addressing the issue until Thursday, when the cabinet meets. Does the government realize that they have literally allowed the country to become a giant garbage dump? Not to mention it’s mid-July and the smelly mountains of trash that have already accumulated are nauseating!