In the framework for monitoring the implementation of ongoing projects through the European regional initiative SUDEP-South in six MENA countries in the area of Energy efficience and renewable energy, a delegation from DG NEAR visited Lebanon from 14 to 18 March this month.
During the visit, an initial briefing was carried out with the Ministry of Interior as the National Focal Point and responsible entity for managing local municipalities followed by another briefing of the Ministry of Energy / Lebanese Center for Energy Conservation. Respectively, both National Authorities expressed appreciation for the exemplary cooperation with the EU in general and SUDEP-South project in particular that constitutes a true pragmatic project which fits perfectly with the needs of municipalities with regard to their objectives to be sustainable and intelligent cities and with the National Energy Efficiency Action Plan (NEEAP) for which the EU was and remains a major partner in its implementation.
Part of the mission was devoted to site visits to view the work in progress in four beneficiary municipalities; Ardeh, Baakline, Halba and Koura where each project includes several activities comprising applications of renewable energy and efficiency energy technologies, capacity building, awareness in addition to communications & visibility. The municipalities and their project partners such as NGOs and academic institutions expressed their gratitude and satisfaction with the EU contribution to finance projects and the associated technical assistance through the SUDEP-South Support Mechanism.
The project sites will include renewable energy and energy efficiency applications such as Solar Photovoltaic augmented LED public saving lights, disbursement of efficient lighting for municipality residents, solar powered water pumping, installation of solar water heaters for residential and public buildings, the utilization of energy efficient home appliances and the production of fuel bricks made from olive waste.
During all visits it was noted that the local authorities drew special attention to the importance of implementing renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives as part of the SUDEP South project and believe that it will form the groundwork for successful replication of the projects at the national level. Through the support mechanism, the SUDEP-South project planned additional assistance to work with the stakeholders on developing local strategies which will ensure the sustainability of these projects and allow for the roll out of further self-funded initiatives using the models and tools provided by SUDEP South.