As climate change effects become more tangible every year, Morocco hopes to tackle them before it is too late.
Rabat – Morocco’s National Office for Electricity and Drinking Water (ONEEP) has allocated around MAD 1.18 billion (€111 million) for several projects in the Guelmim-Oued Noun region, southern Morocco, announced the head of ONEEP’s agency in Guelmim, Ahmed Salem Benjimouaa.
The projects aim to strengthen and diversify drinking water resources, optimize the demand management, reinforce the drinking water supply in rural areas, and extend and rehabilitate distribution networks and wastewater treatment plants.
Benjimouaa made the announcement at a regional meeting held about Morocco’s 2020-2027 national water plan, held on Wednesday, January 29, in Guelmim.
The newly unveiled projects are part of the national water strategy.
Morocco’s water-saving plan
The plan, adopted on Monday, January 13, has a total budget of MAD 115.4 billion (around €10.9 billion). It aims to consolidate and diversify Morocco’s drinking water supply, to guarantee water security, and to combat the effects of climate change.
The program revolves around five main actions to combat the water situation in Morocco. It concerns improving water supply through building dams, managing demand, developing irrigation systems for the agricultural sector, and securing drinking water supply in rural areas.
The strategy also aims to reuse treated wastewater in the irrigation of green areas and raise awareness about the importance of preserving water resources and rationalizing their use.
The plan’s budget is set to cover several infrastructure projects, including building 20 large dams, exploring groundwater to mobilize new resources, and building new seawater desalination stations.
The water situation in Morocco
The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) projected a continued warming trend in Morocco. Every decade since 1970, the average temperature in Morocco has increased by 0.5 °C, exceeding the global average by 0.15 degrees.
Over the next 20 years, IPPC estimates Morocco will become more vulnerable to drought and other extreme weather events.
Reports note that temperatures in Morocco could keep increasing by up to 7 °C by 2100 unless serious preventive measures are taken.