Beirut is a concrete and pollution mayhem. Ironically, the high pollution levels are not caused by the industries that they do not have, by the crippled political system, by armed militias or by foreign interferences, but instead, it is a problem from within the populace itself, which has proven throughout the years to be uncooperative and inconsiderate towards its surrounding, to the extent of rejecting the mere idea of replacing the Humvee with a smaller car, or the “blasphemy” of riding a bike to work.
On the other hand, the geographical and the physical condition of Beirut itself presents a tremendous amount of constraints, mainly due to the fact that the built form and the urban explosion has taken over all the territory within the city and has even spread outwards towards the mountains. It is almost impossible to plan for new green spaces without having to demolish many of the existing buildings (which is practically impossible).
Moreover, the social and the political constraints are even more biding, as the few remaining empty lots are very expensive, and neither their owners nor the real estate agencies are willing to sacrifice them for a bit more greenery, and the municipality and the legal authorities have neither the will nor the power to implement radical regulations