In the framework of the Solid Waste Management programme funded by the European Union, HE the Minister of State for Administrative Reform, Nabil De Freige, and the Head of the Sustainable Development section at the Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon, Marcello Mori, launched the training workshops on solid waste management. The ceremony was attended by the representative of the Minister of Interior and Municipalities, the Director General for Local Councils and Municipalities Judge Omar Hamze, and the municipalities that benefited fromthe programme.
This training on solid waste management is the result of a joint effort between the Office of the Minister of State for Administrative Reform and the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities. It also represents the first ever activity that reflects synergy between two EU-funded projects, MUFIN (Support to Municipal Finance Reform – Capacity Building component) and SWAM (Solid Waste Management). The training aims to provide the participants with basic knowledge on solid waste management, including an overview of the operations and maintenance process in the solid waste management plants.
Minister De Freige stated that "this training session is essential in light of the Cabinet's decision that was adopted to save the citizen from the waste crisis, and that stipulates that municipalities or unionsof municipalities are to manage the waste file with the assistance of a technical committee chaired by HE the Minister of Interior and Municipalities and composed of representatives of the Ministry of Environment, the Council for Development and Reconstruction, the Ministry of Finance and our office, to assess the projects submitted by municipalities and evaluate them and their effectiveness in managing waste in the proper internationally adopted methods. He added: "This training will enable the beneficiaries of the Solid Waste Management programme to learn the basics of solid waste management and to acquire knowledge about the structure/(hierarchy) of solid waste management, starting from "waste reduction" to the least efficient process of "disposal" (reduction, re-use, recycling, retrieving and disposal), as well as its costs and the importance of interacting with citizens in a frank and transparent way and providing them with accurate information about solid waste collection and disposal."
Mr. Marcello Mori said: "Since the onset of the waste crisis, the European Union has been working closely with the Government of Lebanon to find feasible solutions. The EU-Funded Project on-going and planned interventions in the municipal waste sector amount to over 77 million Euros, ranging from support to infrastructure to capacity building." He added that "the EU financial support would not have been sufficient to make this event possible in the absence of a commitment by our national counterparts; this workshop is an exemplary illustration of national ownership and efficient coordination between two beneficiaries of EU support: OMSAR and the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities whose staff, with the support of the EU-funded technical assistance under the MUFIN programme, joined spirit of initiative and expertise to make this event happen."