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Water pollution in Lebanon reaching dangerous levels

Activists and scientists are increasingly concerned about water pollution in Lebanon and request action from the government, which has not acted on the urgent situation so far.
Sewage is pictured flowing on the seaside in the coastal town of Khalde, south of the Lebanese capital Beirut, on September 22, 2016. / AFP / JOSEPH EID        (Photo credit should read JOSEPH EID/AFP/Getty Images)

Lebanese TV network LBCI published a picture June 19 showing a large polluted area along the coastline of Beirut, which then quickly appeared on Lebanese social media networks. A video shared June 1 by the Lebanese Transparency Association, a nongovernmental organization fighting corruption, also showed how badly polluted the water is a few meters below the surface. Although this problem is not new, it seems to reach a new level every year, polluting even underground currents.

“The world’s most beautiful pollution” — that's how blogger Claude El Khal referred to the coastal waters of Lebanon on his blog after LBCI shared the picture of a brown-colored area in the sea, close to the shore where people usually enjoy a swim in summer. Already in 2002, university student Lena Kakati warned on the Planetary Notions website, a global student platform that addresses topics of environmental importance, “Our natural waste greatly harms our health.”

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