Review: We Made Every Living Thing from Water

MK recommended this short documentary (40 min, free to watch) on worsening (collapsing) water management in Lebanon.

It focuses on the decline in water quality due to failures to control pollutants flowing into waters, the abuse of watersheds (building dumps on top of springs, etc.), and the non-operation of wastewater treatment plants build with outside funds (due to local failures to bring sewage to those plants). On the quantity side, there are leaking systems (>50% losses), unregulated wells, and over-pumping-driven saltwater intrusion.

What’s even more sad is that the situation has only gotten worse since the film was made in 2015: the 2019 protests against corruption and political incompetence, the 2020 port explosion that destroyed a large part of central Beirut, the 2021 energy crisis “fueled” by an energy mafia blocking grid operations. The Lebanese pound has lost 99% of its value.

I give this documentary FIVE STARS for its useful investigation into the many causes and effects of water mismanagement in a country that is (basically) a failed state.

Author: David Zetland

I'm a political-economist from California who now lives in Amsterdam.

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