• Wednesday, Sep 26, 2018
  • Last Update : 03:28 pm

Make reefs, not war

  • Published at 12:48 pm July 30th, 2018
Environmental activists drop off old battle tanks provided by the Lebanese Armed Forces into the Mediterranean Sea, about three kilometres off the coast of the southern Lebanese port city of Sidon, on July 28, 2018, to create new habitat for marine life. / AFP PHOTO / Mahmoud ZAYYAT
Environmental activists drop off old battle tanks provided by the Lebanese Armed Forces into the Mediterranean Sea, about three kilometres off the coast of the southern Lebanese port city of Sidon, on July 28, 2018, to create new habitat for marine lifeAFP

Lebanon is sinking tanks in the Mediterranean to make new reefs

Dumping 10 old army tanks off a coast in the name of being environment-friendly may seem counterintuitive; however, that is exactly what one group has done in the Lebanese city of Sidon.

They hope it will not only attract tourists to the region, but also create a new haven for wildlife in the Mediterranean Sea, reports BBC.

Onlookers watched as the tanks were lowered into the water three kilometres off the coast on Saturday.

"This will be a paradise for divers and a place where we can develop underwater life," Kamel Kozbar, of Friends of the Coast of Sidon, the group spearheading the project, told news agency AFP.

According to BBC, he hopes seaweed will soon cover the tanks - a gift from the army - creating the group's vision of an "underwater park" - a world away from the beaches which have not escaped Lebanon's overflowing rubbish crisis.

In January for example, pictures emerged showing mounds of rubbish dumped on the beaches north of the capital Beirut.

But this is not just an environmental project. The group have also purposefully pointed the tanks towards their southern neighbour, Israel.

According to Mr Kozbar, it was done "out of solidarity for the Palestinian people".