BEIRUT — The Beirut and Mount Lebanon Water Establishment announced Tuesday that it is “reluctantly forced” to start rationing its services for reasons related to the electricity supply, the increase in the price of fuel and the depreciation of the lira.
Here’s what we know:
• In a statement, the establishment said it was "reluctantly forced to begin adopting a drastic rationing program in coastal areas.” Water establishments supply water using pumping stations that run on electricity, which rely for the most part on private generators, since Electricité du Liban only provides an average of two hours of power per day across the country. “We hope that the situation will improve, because if it continues like this, it will lead to a total inability to supply water and a total cut in the supply,” the establishment continued.
• The water establishment also said that any damage to its facilities would require “securing hard currency [US dollars] to buy new parts.” The lira was trading at LL33,700 to the US dollar on the parallel exchange market this morning, its all-time low rate.
• The Beirut and Mount Lebanon Water Establishment said it is "sorry for this paralysis" and called for "goodwill" to help it recover, especially as summer approaches when water demand will increase significantly.