SDG 13.3.4: Informing and supporting the local or regional government in local climate change disaster/risk early warning and monitoring

Climate change is now affecting every country on every continent. It is disrupting national economies and affecting lives, costing people, communities and countries dearly today and even more tomorrow.

People are experiencing the significant impacts of climate change, which include changing weather patterns, rising sea level, and more extreme weather events. The greenhouse gas emissions from human activities are driving climate change and continue to rise. They are now at their highest levels in history. Without action, the world’s average surface temperature is projected to rise over the 21st century and is likely to surpass 3 degrees Celsius this century—with some areas of the world expected to warm even more. The poorest and most vulnerable people are being affected the most.

Climate change is the global phenomenon of climate transformation characterized by the changes in the usual climate of the planet (regarding temperature, precipitation, and wind) that are especially caused by human activities. As a result of unbalancing the weather of Earth, the sustainability of the planet’s ecosystems is under threat, as well as the future of humankind and the stability of the global economy.

Over the past two decades, Lebanon has actively worked on improving its capacity to adapt to and mitigate climate change. The country has actively participated in the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change). Lebanon’s overall GHG (greenhouse gases) emissions are minimal compared to other countries due to the country’s size and relatively small industrial sector.

The university, through the strategy it adopted, has been working to reduce the effects of climate change through the adoption of several policies, including relying on green spaces outside and inside the university campus to reduce the percentage of carbon, interest in afforestation of the surrounding lands and motivate students to care about the environment by engaging them in multiple activities aimed to protect the environment and educate them environmentally through holding several seminars and workshops aimed at introducing them to the effects of climate change and the available means to reduce its negative effects on the environment and people.

13.3 Environmental Education Including Disaster Planning
The University strategy states the following “The promotion of sustainable and balanced development across Lebanese territory and the evolution toward global” and which is from the major social challenges that are tackled in the strategic plan of IUL. Also, it is mentioned in the letter of the President of the University which states that: “IUL has issued new specializations that are harmonized with the global change.


13.3.4 Does your university as a body inform and support local or regional government in local climate change disaster/risk early warning and monitoring?

Earthquake Preparedness IN LEBANON Webinar



Memorandum of Cooperation with MoA

At the invitation of the President of the Islamic University of Lebanon, Prof. Dina Al-Mawla, His Excellency the Minister of Agriculture and Culture, Mr. Abbas Mortada, visited the university headquarters in Khaldeh, at the head of a delegation of his advisors and heads of interests from the ministry. His advisors included: Dr. Ali Ataya, a. Najwan Al-Saghir and Dr. Muhammad Hamiya, Engineer Marwan Nassar, and Director of Agricultural Wealth in the Ministry, Engineer Muhammad Abu Zaid, Director of Rural Development and Natural Resources in the Ministry, Dr. Shadi Muhanna.

An expanded meeting was held that included the President of the University, Minister Mortada, and his accompanying delegation: Assistant President of the University’s Board of Trustees, Prof. Nazih Jammoul, Secretary General of the University, Prof. Hussein Badran, Dean of the College of Engineering, Prof. Hassan Noura, Dean of the College of Health Prof. Adnan Murad, Director of Public Relations, Dr. Hisham Al-Husseini, Director of Student Affairs and Registration, Dr. Gadi Moukalled, President of the Survey Engineers Association in the Engineers Syndicate, Mohamed Hammoud, Head of the Surveying Engineering Department at the College, Prof. Kamel Alou, Dr. Walid Fahs, Eng. Bilal Sharkawy, and Eng. Makram Chehayeb.

At the beginning of the meeting, research projects from the Department of Surveying, Computer Engineering and Communications, Dean of the College, Prof. Hassan Noura, then the Honorable President welcomed the Minister as one of the people of the university and not a guest, thanking His Excellency and the accompanying delegation for their visit to the Islamic University, which puts its capabilities and many applied projects at the disposal of the Ministry for what the public interest requires, to address the problem of deprivation, especially for the Bekaa and Akkar regions, where the farms pay our price. with it.

And she added, “Previously, a traditional idea prevailed that the mission of the survey department is limited to the field of organization, planning and demarcation of borders and real estate, while modern technologies and studies have proven the importance of space in terms of planning agricultural production and plant wealth and their geographical distribution in addition to the requirements of the environment.”

Al-Mawla indicated that this major is one of the first majors that was opened at the university, saying that the university, with its nine faculties and its seventy majors, is at the disposal of His Excellency Minister Mortada through the memorandum of cooperation that was signed.

After that, the head of the survey department at the university, Mr. Kamel Alo, presented the project that he prepared with a group of survey engineers, graduates of the university, in the field of agricultural research and engineering studies related to surveying agricultural land and determining the appropriate crops for it. The project is an agricultural atlas that identifies suitable places to grow certain types of fruits and vegetables. It is a preliminary study at the level of the South Lebanon region and was presented at an international conference in Barcelona, ​​where it was ranked as the best research. The study will be expanded to include all Lebanese regions. The project helps reduce the impact of the human factor error in the use of natural resources by conducting a scientific assessment that allows matching the lands with their capabilities.

During the meeting, Dr. Walid Fahs from the Department of Computer Engineering and Communications presented the project, which is in two parts. The first section of it relates to artificial intelligence and modern technologies to help farmers irrigate and monitor crops in a better way with the least amount of water and improve their methods using advanced technology such as drones, robots and remote sensors, which allows collecting information and images about agricultural lands, plants and crops. The second section is related to the observation of vegetation cover (plants, herbs, trees) and methods of image processing and analysis.

For his part, Minister Mortada delivered a speech in which he thanked the President for her invitation, stressing the issue of cooperation and integration between the public and private sectors overlapping their roles, pointing to the cooperation with universities through their researchers that contribute to formulating strategies and stimulating creative energies in the development of the agricultural sector, which culminates today in the signing of the cooperation protocol With the Islamic University of Lebanon for the advancement of the country.

And he stressed that this university edifice, from here today, belongs to him and one of his sons, “It brings us back to the hidden imam, Mr. Musa al-Sadr, who moved the Lebanese society from darkness to light, the light of science and knowledge. His project was to consolidate the bond of the Lebanese with each other and their country. It is a university for all the Lebanese.” I assure that no one will wait for us to develop our reality, as development is an internal will factor, leading to safety with science, research and progress.”

The president addressed the Lord and the university administration by saying: “We will be with you, by your side, for the benefit.”

In conclusion, a memorandum of cooperation was signed between President Al-Mawla and His Excellency Minister Mortada. Followed by taking souvenir photos with the audience.


Environment Minister at Geneva conference: earthquakes destroyed Beirut 7 times

Environment minister at the Geneva conference: earthquakes destroyed Beirut 7 times and despite all the progress Lebanon is still not ready to face disasters, environment minister nazim al-Khoury, representing the president of the republic general Michel Suleiman, participated today in the high-level dialogue held during the fourth session of the world disaster risk reduction platform in Geneva.
“Lebanon initially expresses its appreciation to the un office for disaster risk reduction and all partners for their ongoing efforts, particularly to organize the fourth session of the world disaster risk reduction platform,” he
“In the past, earthquakes have destroyed Beirut seven times and earthquakes, tsunamis, droughts and floods have caused enormous economic damage to the country,” the environment minister
said. “Lebanon is still not fully prepared for disasters.”
“Lebanon faces several challenges in introducing pollution risk reduction in its national and local policies in order to ensure a comprehensive and integrated approach to this issue,” the environment minister
said. since 2009, the Lebanese government has committed itself to making disaster risk reduction a national priority, and has embarked on a project implemented by the prime minister’s office with the support of the united nations development programme, and a national committee has been formed comprising all ministries and official bodies concerned, and developed countries must take practical steps to support countries such as Lebanon.”
“our country, Lebanon, is committed to building societies capable of responding to disasters and integrating the right governance while reducing disaster risk and implementing it at all levels,” he


Implementation of an automated snow monitoring system using MODIS products in Lebanon

Snow Cover Area monitoring is an important factor in studies of global climate change, regional water balance and soil moisture. Recently, the usage of remote sensing techniques has flourished. In fact, remote sensing data provides timely adequate snow cover information for large areas. While the National Center for Remote Sensing in Lebanon (CNRS) has recently established an operational monitoring room for natural resources and natural disasters, this paper presents the implementation of a fully automated snow cover monitoring system based on Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite images. The system uses snow products from EOS Terra, and Aqua satellites to monitor the Snow Cover of Lebanon during the snow season (i.e. November-April). The importance of this project lies in its daily and fully automated process of acquiring, processing, storing and displaying statistics of the snow covered areas in Lebanon. Applying a custom algorithm based on combining Terra and Aqua snow products will reduce cloud contamination.

Electrical Sensing and Tomographic Imaging Techniques

Research has been carried out with students that have informed the government on early warning and monitoring of climate change disasters, for example, Mahdi Saleh earned BE and ME degrees in computer and communication engineering from the Islamic University of Lebanon (IUL) in 2012 and 2015. During his master’s studies, he worked with the National Center for Remote Sensing to develop an automated system for measuring snow-covered regions using satellite-based remote sensing products. 

His research focused on electrical sensing and tomographic imaging techniques. For the past few years, he has been working on developing sensing systems to measure the thickness of oil films floating on the water surface during oil spills. This project, funded by the US Department of the Interior, aims to enhance the efficiency of current oil cleanup methods. The results of the project have been published in journal articles and several conference papers. In addition, a US patent application describing the sensor was published in 2019. They are now using the technology to enhance sensors measuring moisture. They received the top award in IFI’s 2018 Climate Change Student Competition for this project.