President's Blog

3 Oct 2018 15:54 Age: 1 year

Workshop on the new Waste Law in Lebanon

Category: ISWA BLOG


The Lebanese Parliament recently voted on a new Waste Law, that was pending for approval for more than ten years. After an official request by the Office of the Minister of State for Administrative Reform (OMSAR), ISWA provided several comments and proposals for improvements and ISWA’s experts presented them in a dedicated workshop that was organized by OMSAR on September 27th at the Lebanese Parliament. As ISWA’s Managing Director Arne Ragossnig mentioned “OMSAR’s request was welcomed as ISWA’s mission is to provide exactly this kind of expertise to the countries that require it”.

Opening the workshop Her Excellency Dr. Inaya Ezzeddine, Minister of OMSAR, spoke about the roots of the waste crisis in Lebanon and analyzed the need to consider both local and international experiences as well as best practices to shape a law that will reflect waste management as a social output, rather than a technical problem. 

Ad Lansink, the founder of the waste hierarchy and the author of the book “Challenging Changes – Connecting Waste Hierarchy and Circular Economy” that recently received the ISWA Publication Award 2018, explained the need to use waste hierarchy as a legal instrument and the relevant experiences from EU and Netherlands, from 1970s till today. 

Arne Ragossnig, ISWA’s Managing Director, explained the conditions required for a successful implementation of waste to energy projects and described the lessons learnt from EU and Austria. He also presented the EU legal framework and its functionality.

Derek Greedy, member of the ISWA’s Board of Directors, detailed the governance aspects of waste management, described the UK legal framework, and focused on the need for proper regulations, communications and enforcement. 

Antonis Mavropoulos, ISWA President, presented ISWA’s views on the law, proposed specific amendments and suggested that the law is just the beginning of a long regulatory process that involves trial and error and should be open to a continuous consultation with the society and the NGOs, based on the positive and negative experiences from what works and what does not work.  

Following the initial presentations, a great panel discussion and interaction with the audience took place, coordinated by Mr. Mohamad Baraki, OMSAR Project Manager of OMSAR Solid Waste Management projects.  

ISWA President commented that “ISWA is really happy to help Lebanon to overcome the on-going waste crisis – what we did for the Lebanese law is a simple but effective way in which ISWA can help developing countries to shape their legal framework for waste management, as a first step towards a national integrated sustainable waste management system. We are ready to be engaged with other developing countries too, and there are several cases in our pipeline”. 


Photos (starting from the top: 1) the Minister of OMSAR Dr. Inaya Ezzeddine receives Ad Lansink’s book signed by the author, 2) Derek Greedy delivering his presentation)