A man fills water containers in Barouk, Wednesday, July 16, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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For the third consecutive year Lebanon has had less-than-average rainfall, likely leading to water shortages for many throughout the summer of 2016 .The lower-than-average precipitation, the extremely hot weather, and the chronically poor water management all play a role in the near-annual water crisis.For some, the water shortage of this summer may come as a surprise considering the three different storms which hit Lebanon in the past winter: Vladimir, Ursula, and Thalassa.Although many predicted a harsh and tough winter, rain was sparse and in most regions of Lebanon precipitation was far from the yearly average.On the other hand, in Tripoli, rainfall was somewhat above average with 943.2 mm, higher than the 825 mm anticipated annually.Although rainfall levels were not as low over the past winter as they have been in the previous two years – indeed the winter of 2013-14 had less than half the expected rainfall – it is still a source of concern.Poor water resource management compounds the issue of lower-than-expected rainfall. While these long-term plans will be of little solace to those without water through the long, hot summer heat, by taking action Lebanon could head off severe water shortages and drought in the future.
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