USAID Senior Development Advisor Visits Solar-Powered Pumping Station in Majdel Anjar
Majdel Anjar in the Beqaa Valley is home to approximately 25,500 Lebanese and 32,000 Syrian refugees, which rely on two main water wells. Prolonged state-electricity outages coupled with the large presence of refugees have caused severe water shortages in the community. This prevented the Majdel Anjar municipality and the Beqaa Water Establishment from meeting residents’ water needs and led to communal tensions over access to water. In response, the USAID-funded Community Support Program (CSP) installed a solar farm to operate the town’s water pumping system, as well as rehabilitated its pumping station and upgraded its chlorination room. In parallel, to ensure the sustainability of this renewable energy solution, CSP trained municipal staff and workers from the Beqaa Water Establishment (BWE) on the operation and maintenance of the solar panels and chlorination system, including safety and cleanliness measures, as well as best management practices for any waste generated from the new system.
On May 16, 2023, USAID Senior Development Advisor Alexious Butler visited Majdel Anjar where she toured the solar-powered water pumping station along with the Mayor of Majdel Anjar and the Head of Water Stations at the BWE and met with residents benefiting from it. Since its technical completion in August 2022, this intervention is ensuring continuous access to water for around 19,000 beneficiaries while saving more than $95,000 a year for the municipality of Majdel Anjar and $80 a month per household that previously relied on trucked water. This is a significant amount, given that the average monthly household income in Majdel Anjar is $40 and the municipal budget is around $13,500 per year.
“Prior to USAID’s intervention, the municipality used to receive around 300 calls daily from residents complaining about water shortages. This solar project not only enabled us to provide potable water for the community, but also reduced municipal and residential costs while protecting the environment”, stated Said Yassine, Mayor of Majdel Anjar.