Adonis Diaries

Archive for January 21st, 2018

Water: Blue Gold promises to monetize water wealth?

So far, climate change has reached Lebanon snow fall rate: snow thickness and duration is diminishing every year and our ground water supply will take serious hits.

Mind you that domestic and agricultural demand is estimated to increase respectively by 5% and 3 percent annually.

Elias Sakr published in The Daily Star this Dec. 11, 2013:

Blue Gold promises to monetize water wealth

BEIRUT: Despite an annual rainfall average of 8 billion cubic meters, Lebanon posted a deficit of 73 million cubic meters in water supply in 2011, according to the latest available official statistics.

Yet, the country could reverse the trend and generate more than $600 million from a water surplus by 2020 if a comprehensive national strategy to reform the sector is implemented, according to the Blue Gold initiative launched Tuesday.

The Blue Gold project is a five-year plan for the management of the water sector in Lebanon, initiated by the Civic Influence Hub – a lobbying group of leading business people – with the support of more than 40 water experts.

“In addition to ensuring the daily needs of the citizens from the water, the Blue Gold project aims to introduce the concept of converting our surplus of water from a consumption need to a national economic wealth,” said expert Fahd Saccal, a member of the CIH steering committee.

However, the failure to take immediate action is forecast to result in a deficit of 876 million cubic meters in water supply by 2020 as domestic and agricultural demand is estimated to increase by 5 percent and 3 percent annually, the study showed.

Due to inefficient management, Lebanon makes use of only 17% of its available water, said Saccal, who outlined the strategic aspects of the Blue Gold project before hundreds of participants attending the launch event at the Phoenicia Hotel in Beirut.

Out of 2.7 billion cubic meters of available water through eight aquifers and 17 perennial rivers fed by more than 2,000 springs, Lebanon makes use of only 1.4 billion cubic meters, with agriculture being the primary driver at 55 percent of the total demand, the study showed.

The rest of the water is lost in storage, due to Lebanon’s soil that drains water from dams; in distribution, due to depleted pipes or a lack of connection to storage facilities; and misuse, due to archaic irrigation methods and lack of water consumption discipline.

The Blue Gold project outlines work on all three fronts to exceed demand with a surplus of 500 million cubic meters through its 2015-20 first phase, estimated at a total cost of $5 billion.

The plan includes reforestation, new water recycling plants, repairing the distribution system, drilling public wells and constructing 11 new dams.

The surplus water would generate more than $600 million if used in exports and bottling industries, while the rehabilitation of water distribution networks would save $310 million in technical losses, the study forecast.

The socio-economic impact of the Blue Gold initiative extends to households, providing water on a 24-hour basis while decreasing the average annual water bill by 40 percent from the current $700 per person to $380, according to Wafaa Saab, another member of the CIH steering committee.

Households in Beirut are the most dependent on private water suppliers for both drinking and domestic use since a large number of neighborhoods in the capital only receive three hours of water per day during dry seasons. (We pay two bills for water and electricity: one bill for the private providers and the public services)

Saab added that the project would also cut the bill of tourism enterprises by 30 percent, decreasing the hotels’ average yearly water bills from $50,000 to $35,000, according to the study.

On a national level, Saab said the project would save around $800 million in health expenditures caused by water pollution, which represents 2 percent of GDP, and would boost the productivity of the agricultural sector by 20 percent.

“Blue Gold will create in the first phase more than 3,000 permanent jobs and 40,0000 seasonal jobs and encourage people to stay in their communities,” Saab said.

The Blue Gold national water plan is to be funded by international institutions and public-private partnerships to ease the burden on the indebted state Treasury and generate profits for the government from public-private partnership projects, according to CIH.

The private sector would be able to earn an annual profit of12 percent from service-provider contracts, according to the proposal that allows Lebanese citizens to invest in the water sector through crowd funding and receive a minimum annual return of 12 percent after taxes.

“Leveraging the concept of PPP in all sectors that tackle daily needs of citizens should be distanced from political tendencies and monopoly and should be influenced by science, qualification and efficiency, with the concept of involving citizens,” CIH CEO Ziad Sayegh said.

While the Blue Gold project looks promising, according to experts, the road ahead for its implementation remains a long one that requires first the drafting and ratification of a law to regulate the water sector in Lebanon.

“With these obstacles in mind, we are determined not to fail, but our bet is to convince the decision-makers to give priority to the national wealth,” CIH board member Elie Gebrayel said.

“We are in the stage of completing the draft law establishing the National Council for Water, which we propose as a new model of partnership between the public and private sectors on one hand, and Lebanese citizens on the other hand,” Gebrayel added.

The two other phases of the Blue Gold will be implemented over a medium- and long-term interval extending from 2020 to 2030 and beyond.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on December 11, 2013, on page 5.

Read more:
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News ::

The four elements of entrepreneurship

Are successful entrepreneurs made or born?

Entrepreneurial behavior isn’t about scale, it’s about a desire for a certain kind of journey

We’d need to start with an understanding of what an entrepreneur is. They’re all over the map, which makes the question particularly difficult to navigate.

There’s the 14-year-old girl who hitches a ride to Costco, buys 100 bottles of water for thirty cents each, then sells them at the beach for a dollar a pop. Scale that that every day for a summer and you can pay for college.

Or the 7-time venture-backed software geek who finds a niche, gets some funding, builds it out with a trusted team, sells it for $100 million in stock and then starts again.

Perhaps we’re talking about a non-profit entrepreneur, a woman who builds a useful asset, finds a scalable source of funding and changes the world as she does.

The mistake that’s easy to make is based in language. We say, “she’s an entrepreneur,” when we should be saying, “she’s acting like an entrepreneur.

Since entrepreneurship is a verb, an action, a posture… then of course, it’s a choice. You might not want to act like one, but if you can model behavior, you can act like one.

And what do people do when they’re acting like entrepreneurs?

1. They make decisions.

2. They invest in activities and assets that aren’t a sure thing.

3. They persuade others to support a mission with a non-guaranteed outcome.

4. This one is the most amorphous, the most difficult to pin down and thus the juiciest: They embrace (instead of run from) the work of doing things that might not work.

As far as I can tell, that’s it. Everything else you can hire.

Buying into an existing business by buying a franchise, to pick one example–there’s very little of any of the four elements of entrepreneurial behavior.

Yes, you’re swinging for a bigger win, you’re investing risk capital, you’re going outside the traditional mainstream. But what you’re doing is buying a proven business, not acting like an entrepreneur. The four elements aren’t really there. It’s a process instead. Nothing wrong with that.

All four of these elements are unnatural to most folks. Particularly if you were good at school, you’re not good at this. No right answers, no multiple choice, no findable bounds.

It’s easy to get hung up on the “risk taking” part of it, but if you’re acting like an entrepreneur, you don’t feel like you’re taking a huge risk.

Risks are what happens at a casino, where you have little control over the outcome.

People acting like entrepreneurs, however, feel as though the four most important elements of their work (see above) are well within their control.

If you’re hoping someone can hand you a Dummies guide, giving you the quick steps, the guaranteed method, the way to turn this process into a job–well, you’ve just announced that you don’t feel like acting like an entrepreneur.

But before you walk away from it, give it a try.

Entrepreneurial behavior isn’t about scale, it’s about a desire for a certain kind of journey.

Notes and tidbits posted on FB and Twitter. Part 130

Note 1: I take notes of books I read and comment on events and edit sentences that fit my style. The page is long and growing like crazy, and the sections I post contains months-old events that are worth refreshing your memory.

There are two viable solutions for the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, short of exterminating one party or most probably both, that has been spreading death, disabilities, miseries, indignities and humiliation since 1920.

From a psychological necessity, a Palestinian State will make them feel that persistent resistance and countless “martyrs” for re-establishing their rights as legitimate and independent people have brought fruits, as any genuine national resistance ultimately should.

It would be inevitable that the Palestinian State be guaranteed a neutrality status (no preemptive wars within and outside its borders) by the world community and the regional powers (Like in Switzerland?).

Mago of Carthage wrote the masterful 28 volumes on agricultureTreatise on Agriculture” and considered by the Romans as the “Father of Agriculture”

Pythagoras’ mother was Phoenician and she sailed from the island of Samus to Lebanon Afka Temple in order for her son to receive the lustral consecration (baptized according to the rite that is still performed in Lebanon).

Il apparait que, tant que tu lis passionement, si la Mort est de passage, Il se penchera pour lire ton livre. Tant que tu lis, la Mort te protege

Pour briser les moules, il faut d’abord les connaitre. On apprend toujours les methodes conventionelles: c’est l’ecole.

L’effet tunnel: Voir le monde a travers une longue-vue, se trouver a l’exterieur des choses et la vie. Ca s’appelle l’ angoissse, le stress.

Around the world, a growing body of evidence is showing that people with lower levels of stress and higher levels of mental well-being are more creative, more productive and take less time off work.

White males coping with financially difficult times (the poorer classes) view firearms as “morally and emotionally restorative” to society’s problems.

My second impression of the USA is that the citizen projects an attitude of positive happiness to life; he smiles, he is friendly, and he is conscious of his value. (Einstein as he landed in the late 40’s)

The Europeans demonstrate critical minds and absence of generosity and compassion. The European asks a lot from his entertainments and readings. (Einstein as he landed in the late 40’s)

So far, Iranian mullahs have been consistent in safeguarding the territorial integrity in the Middle-East. Saudi Kingdom has been consistent in the last 90 years of executing the plans of the power of Evils (US expansionist policies, Israel apartheid regime and extremist religious sects)).

Do tell us Saad Hariri when you board your private jet, so we can locate you in time of difficulties

Yalla, yi teer bi doun ma yesta2zen majless al wouzarat wa President saaret min khabar kaan




January 2018

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