USAID DAWERR Helps Lebanese Municipalities Improve Solid Waste Management

The USAID Lebanon Diverting Waste by Encouraging Reuse and Recycling (DAWERR) Activity announced its second round of support to three new groupings of municipalities to improve solid waste management (SWM) services, thus diverting significant proportions away from landfills. USAID/Lebanon Mission Director Mary Eileen Devitt, Minister of Environment Dr. Nasser Yassin, Dr. Joelle Jandry representing Minister of Industry George Boujikian, and heads of municipalities of three selected groupings and DAWERR’s initial pilot projects, along with DAWERR partners Berytech, Compost Baladi, and ECODIT Liban, and representatives from international organizations in Lebanon and the private sector attended the event. 

The participating municipalities -- (1) Ansarieh, Loubieh, Saksakiye, Sarafand, (2) Ras El Matn, Deir El Harf, Qortada, (3) Anfeh, Bichmezzine, Fih, and Kfarhazir, in addition to DAWERR’s pilot projects in the municipalities of Baskinta, Batloun, Chanay/Majdel Baana, Jezzine, Qaraoun, and Rachaya El-Wadi --, 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 their activities. 

In her remarks, USAID Mission Director Mary Eileen Devitt stated, “A year ago, we launched partnerships with seven municipalities to promote user-friendly waste management approaches that balance the needs of the community and the environment. This year, we are building on this support by collaborating with 11 new municipalities to encourage better stewardship of Lebanon’s environment while generating much-needed income to support other essential municipal services.”

The event also marked the launch of the RELIST Application by Nadeera, the winner of the DAWERR Clearinghouse, a program that challenged innovative startups and small and medium enterprises to develop an e-commerce digital platform for source-separated recyclables. RELIST is an online recyclables marketplace that allows users to buy and sell directly. The winning startups of the DAWERR Ideathons 2021 and 2022 “Reconcrete”, “LU Biochar”, “RBNTech”, “Pulp” and “Eplastr” also showcased their winning prototypes and ideas at the event. Both Ideathons allowed young entrepreneurs and startups to compete in bootcamps and incubation programs to develop and present innovative solid waste management solutions. In addition to business support through workshops and clinics, the winners received USAID funding to support them in creating a prototype or enhancing a minimum viable product. 

DAWERR is a five-year, $15 million Activity implemented by ECODIT, which supports USAID/Lebanon’s work to develop sustainable processes for composting organic waste, reduce the amount of solid waste that goes to landfills, and improve existing recycling efforts throughout rural areas in Lebanon. By 2025, DAWERR anticipates diverting 55% of waste in the target municipalities and improving the quality of life for 300,000 people served by sustainable SWM systems in roughly 50 municipalities. The project will also establish 40 public-private partnerships to support improved SWM, create 100 sustainable full-time equivalent jobs in recycling value chains, and generate additional financial returns from composting and recycling. 

ECODIT is a U.S.-based women-owned small business with 29 years of experience working with governments, businesses, and local communities to advance environmentally and socially responsible development around the world. To learn more about ECODIT, visit and follow the firm’s social media accounts on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.