The vertical or technical management approach consisted of four key steps:
1. The first step was to undertake a thorough review of existing plans, programs, projects, studies and reports in the area of study, complemented by a field survey to acquire all missing data (municipal; industrial; farmers and agricultural input suppliers; complementary and confirmatory river and lake, water and sediments, sampling…).
2. The second step consisted of translating the collected data into maps and tables of pollution pressures and database of medium (river and lake) state, and accordingly analyzing the situation.
3. The third step was to assess the enabling environment (institutional, legal and financial) for the various pressure sectors (solid waste, wastewater, agriculture, etc.).
4. The final step consisted of identifying the possible solutions and mitigation measures for all sectors, along with assessing respective costs and undertaking a prioritization strategy.
The complementary horizontal management approach, or participatory approach, consisted of engaging the various stakeholders throughout the four steps of the technical knowledge management above, as follows:
1. Knowledge management within the Ministry of Environment, through the formation of a coordination committee that grouped the heads of the Ministry’s technical departments, thus representing all disciplines; the committee met on a regular basis to assess work progress and exchange information, knowledge and experience.
2. Knowledge management between the MoE and other public agencies (e.g. National Council for Scientific Research, Council for Development and Reconstruction, Litani River Authority, etc.) or other Ministries (e.g. Ministry of Energy and Water, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Industry, etc.) through bi-lateral meetings to access existing studies and reports and discuss related past, current and prospect plans, programs and projects and thus establish the database described in step 2 above.
3. Knowledge management between the MoE and local authorities (municipalities, etc.), where the various towns and municipalities in the area of study (99 towns represented by about 60 municipalities) were involved in the survey discussed in step 1 above, through questionnaires and sites’ visits.
4. Knowledge management between the MoE and the private sector; where a total of 294 industrial establishments were located during the filed survey and a total of 105 farmers were interviewed. Findings were assessed in light of current initiatives to incentivize polluters to comply with environmental standards.
5. Knowledge management between the MoE and the NGOs and citizens at large, through a workshop that was held in the area of study few weeks after the preparation of the business plan was initiated and where the fore-mentioned methodology was presented, discussed and later refined based on comments and feedback.