Commitment to Quarry Rehabilitation
Sustainable development, which includes biodiversity management, is embedded into Holcim’s long term business strategy. In compliance with Holcim Group guidelines and the Quarry Rehabilitation Directive (QRD), Holcim Lebanon is committed to effective management and rehabilitation of its quarries.
A Pioneering Initiative in Lebanon and the Region
Holcim Lebanon signed a memorandum of understanding with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Regional Office of Western Asia (ROWA) to restore an abandoned quarry in Chekka. The project is a joint collaboration with experts from the National Council for Scientific Research-Lebanon (CNRS) and The Association for Forests, Development and Conservation (AFDC), and is implemented under the supervision of IUCN ROWA.
The quarry rehabilitation pilot project in Chekka is expected to provide a model for the rehabilitation of Holcim Lebanon quarries and the abandoned quarries of Lebanon, in order to be replicated elsewhere in the region.
- To show the challenges of rehabilitating a quarry in order to be a learning opportunity for stakeholders.
- To substantiate Holcim Lebanon’s commitment and credibility towards the local communities in dealing with environmental challenges.
- To strengthen Holcim Lebanon’s position as pioneers in the sustainability commitment in the industrial sector in Lebanon.
Pre intervention - Lowland zone
Post intervention - Lowland zone
Experts explain the project in the following documentary
Rehabilitation Activities on site
The rehabilitation scheme divides the quarry site into 4 main subunits:, Cliffland, Highland , Coreland and Lowland according to the main concept of the design aiming to create coherently structured subunits respecting the key principles of ecological restoration and providing a fair space for education and scientific research purposes.
Gabions as a defense line
The cliffland promotes mosaic habitat creation through the alternation of bushes and grass spots.
The area was covered with an irregular layer of topsoil and planted with native species and shrubs. The natural landform was expanded and used as an “impluvium” (catchment basin) to retain soil. And internal gabion structures were installed to serve as a second defense line.
The Highland uses gabion structures and will serve for research and monitoring purposes
This section aims to break the visual impact of the excavation scars, create an adequate habitat attracting fauna species, increase biomass on the terrace and respect the natural dynamics occurring at the head of the quarry wall. One section included unplanted gabions to retain the soil fine materials while the other was covered with planted gabions with native shrub species.
The Coreland intends to create embedded and connected water loops.
The focus in the Coreland is to create a “water web” composed of a network of three ponds aiming to slow down water run-off, guide water across the site and create temporary water retaining structures that provide humidity to the site. As such, creating a network of sub-humid habitats in the dry environment, and improve amphibians and insect frequentation.
The Lowland acts as a “panel” for the rehabilitated quarry and a “demonstration” spot for the site.
The Lowland area aims to create a demonstration spot composed of adapted plant species used in the site restoration. A stone/retaining wall of 100 cm is built in order to retain soil and stabilize the structure, along with Terrace-like structures of approximately 20 to 25 cm height are mounted across the arena and planted with trees and shrubs used in the reforestation of the site to improve visual integration.