A project was launched in August to protect Jeita spring water. This will be done through the establishment of wastewater networks and the construction of a wastewater treatment plant.
The $30 million project will be partially funded by the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, through a $27 million loan. The Lebanese government will pay the remaining amount.
Nabil Haddad, General Manager of Mapas, the company which operates Jeita Grotto, said: “The treatment plant would benefit an estimated 45,000 citizens.”
Jeita spring feeds more than 60 percent of the Greater Beirut area with potable water, after being refined at the Dbayeh plant.
Haddad said: “The plant will be located in Zouk Mosbeh and expropriations have just begun.” Expropriations will be made in order for the plant to be developed. An environmental impact assessment study was conducted by German experts on the geographical stretch going from Sannine through Afka to Jeita. The study examines where networks should be rehabilitated and developed and where to place possible treatment plants.
Haddad said the scope of the project was expanded in order to protect the largest area surrounding the spring’s source.
The Council for Development and Reconstruction (CDR) will now be in charge of holding tenders to choose project contractors.
The project funding and works are divided into two phases. The first costs $8 million and includes the installation of wastewater networks between Ajaltoun and Jeita. The second phase costs $22 million and is pending the Council of Ministers’ and Parliament’s approvals. It includes the construction of treatment plant as well as establishment of wastewater networks from Kfardebian to Bkaatouta and Bekaata.