Lebanon’s water supply networks ‘on the brink’
22 July 2022
Lebanese children are at risk as water supply systems across the country teeter on the brink of failure, UNICEF has warned.
“While a total collapse of public water supply networks has so far been averted, the (water supply) systems remain on the brink, which poses a threat for the health of millions of people, especially children,” UNICEF said in a statement.
The UN body said Lebanon’s limited power supplies make it impossible to pump enough water, and in some cases, “cause pumping operations to shut down entirely.”
It added that it had previously warned “a year ago that the water system has reached a breaking point.”
Edouard Beigbeder, UNICEF’s representative in Lebanon, said that “millions of people in Lebanon are affected by the limited availability of clean and safe water, and addressing the issue is of (the) utmost importance for the health of children and families in Lebanon.
“Since the beginning of the crisis, per-capita water supplies from the water establishments have decreased dramatically amid frequent blackouts, falling short of the 35 liters a day considered to be the minimum acceptable quantity,” he said.
“The average cost of 1,000 liters of trucked water increased to 145,000 Lebanese pounds ($6 at the Sayrafa exchange rate) in April 2022, an increase of almost 50 percent compared with the same month in 2021.