USAID DAWERR Project Signs MOUs with Lebanese Municipalities to Promote Sustainable Solid Waste Management

On July 22, 2021, the USAID Diverting Waste by Encouraging Reuse and Recycling (DAWERR) Activity, a five-year, $15 million activity implemented by ECODIT, signed Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with six municipalities to improve solid waste management (SWM) through a set of pilot interventions. The MOU signatories included the mayors of the municipalities of Batloun, Baskinta, Chanay, Jezzine, Qaraoun, and Rachaya El Wadi, as well as DAWERR Interim Chief of Party Rachel Mallah.

The MOU signing ceremony was held in the presence of USAID Lebanon’s Local Development Office Director, Claude Zullo and Program Development Specialist, Sana Saliba, aas well as ECODIT President Joseph Karam and ECODIT’s partners Berytech, Compost Baladi, and ECODIT Liban. DAWERR and its partners committed to developing sustainable processes for composting organic waste and to improving existing recycling efforts. The Municipalities have already formed Municipal Solid Waste Management Committees to support the municipalities in implementing the pilot projects.

DAWERR is a five-year activity designed to improve the social, environmental, and economic well-being of Lebanese citizens through sustainable solid waste recovery and diversion programs with municipal unions, and/or clusters of municipalities throughout rural areas. DAWERR promotes the reuse, recycling, and monetization of solid waste as a sustainable way to reduce landfill use. Participating municipalities are selected through a rigorous evaluation and selection process. These municipalities, along with their communities and their partners (e.g., non-governmental organizations, social enterprises, private sector entities) will receive tailored technical, financial, and business support to design, implement, and manage the pilots. Eventually, DAWERR will replicate successful pilots and expand Integrated SWM solutions into other municipal unions. 

“Today we are signing the MOUs to reaffirm the partnership with the selected municipalities and engage with their local communities to design, implement and sustain solid waste diversion and valorization solutions that balance the need of the community and the environment with long term financial sustainability,” said DAWERR Interim Chief of Party Rachel Mallah at the event. “We will do everything we can to ensure that DAWERR will leave a legacy of enhancing local governance and SWM services, improving the health and quality of life of the Lebanese people, and creating sustainable jobs and livelihoods,” added Mr. Karam.

By the project’s end in 2025, DAWERR anticipates its activities will improve the quality of life for 300,000 people served by sustainable SWM systems in 18 municipalities and three unions of municipalities. The project will also establish 40 public private partnerships to support improved SWM, create 100 sustainable full-time equivalent jobs in the recycling value chains, and generate additional financial returns from composting and recycling.

ECODIT is a U.S.-based small business with 28 years of experience working with governments, businesses and local communities to advance environmentally and socially responsible development around the world. The firm has implemented several a number of environmental, water, energy, and livelihood projects, both in Lebanon and around the world. To learn more about ECODIT, visit and follow the firm’s social media accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. (Photo Caption: From left, ECODIT President Joseph Karam, DAWERR Interim Chief of Party Rachel Mallah, George Alam (Mayor of Baskinta), and USAID Lebanon Local Development Office Director, Claude Zullo; Photo Credit: USAID DAWERR)