The Association of Lebanese Industrialists (ALI) has partnered with the Lebanon Water Project (LWP) to implement the Water Efficiency in Lebanese Industry (WELI) Project. Funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Project assisted nine marble and granite industries in installing and enhancing their water efficiency mechanisms in 2019. The grants covered 50% of the industries’ investments in water-saving initiatives and enabled them to save up to 90% of the water used during their manufacturing operations.
The Project focused on an economically sustainable water conservation approach through establishing a culture of water conservation in the stone-cutting sector. The assistance was divided into five different phases:
- Selecting and engaging nine marble and granite industries.
- Assessing the industries through a pre-water audit that was conducted by an environmental consultant.
- Organizing a workshop to recommend the most appropriate solutions for the protection and conservation of water resources.
- Implementing agreed-upon solutions by the industries.
- Conducting a post-water audit to demonstrate the impact of the Project.
The Project proved to be a success with multiple positive outcomes that included:
- Protecting groundwater and reducing water-purchasing costs. Treated wastewater can help stone-cutting industries regain up to 90% of their water.
- Reducing maintenance costs and space and contributing to better compliance with government regulations.
- Protecting rivers and groundwater and minimizing leaching by installing new treatment equipment.
- 20 Industries saved around 67.7% of the water used, resulting in 45,618 m3 saved per year.
- Improving suspended solid levels in water by 91.8%.
- Reducing quantities of sludge by an of average 80.2%.