Editor’s Note: Lebanon is on the mats again with the electric grid down. Houdini did not magically produce a fuel tanker to crank things back up. The interim solutions have complicated logistics and political hurdles to overcome, where hidden hands can throw a monkey wrench into the process.
There was no mention in this story of the hospital situation. They will have their own generators, but with the desperation now with everyone wanting fuel, a truck would seem to be a hijackable item or the army would have to supply an escort.
The banking sector, army, police, etc., certainly are keeping their systems up to supply some minimal services. But at the end of the day, their suffering is part of the cost of the orchestrated geopolitical chaos created by those looking to exploit it, their favorite game.
Beirut is a great place to visit, and for hiring a car and driver to be wheeled around quickly to grab some of the sites, especially the historic ones. VT had a great day in the Beqaa Valley, with Hezbollah drivers no less, as we were going into their territory where having a local guy at the wheel is necessary.
We hope they can come out of their dark tunnel before they become refugees in their own country, as so many others have in the region… Jim W. Dean
Lebanon’s national electricity grid collapses
from the Washington Post, by Nader Durgham and Liz Sly
Welcome to an average Bierut neighborhood for a single mother with two kids. She was lucky enough to work for an NGO that did grants for talented poor kid students. The scooter she has shows she has a job.
First published October 10, 2020
BEIRUT — Lebanon’s electricity network collapsed on Saturday after the two most important power stations ran out of fuel, leaving private generators as the only source of power.
The state-owned electricity company has been providing citizens with just a few hours of power a day for months, but the total collapse of the national grid will compound the misery of those who can’t afford to run generators and had relied on those few hours.
The outage marks the latest milestone in the unraveling of Lebanon, which is undergoing what the World Bank has described as one of the world’s three biggest financial collapses of the past 150 years.
The banking system was the first to implode in 2019, triggering a 90 percent slide in the value of the currency that has left the government unable to afford fuel, food and medicine imports while plunging millions of Lebanese into poverty.
…Lebanon will need a lot of goodwill from the world for the gas deal to come through, including funding and an agreement from the United States to waive sanctions on Syria so that the gas can reach Lebanon, Fayyad said.
But if it works, the gas supply will prove cheaper and more efficient than the current system, which relies on pricey fuel imports, enabling a big improvement, he said.
“Even if we have a short period of crisis, we hope we can overcome this,” he said.