Morocco to implement new measures tackling water scarcity amid worsening drought

Morocco to implement new measures tackling water scarcity amid worsening drought
Morocco is currently experiencing heightened water shortages due to a number of factors - including reduced rainfall and rising temperatures - in what has been described as the 'worst drought since the 1980s'.
2 min read
23 July, 2022
The ministry of Interior is urging local councils to encourage citizens to curb water usage [Getty]

Moroccan authorities on Friday instructed that the water flow distributed to citizens be regulated as the country grapples with a drought, exacerbated by scorching temperatures and decreased rainfall.

Interior Minister Abdelouafi Laftit also called for a pause to watering vast green spaces and golf courses, reported The New Arab’s sister site, Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

Other measures include the prohibition of washing of streets and public places with drinking water, the prohibition of illicit taking of water from boreholes, wells and springs, as well as the ban of using drinking water for washing machinery, added the Moroccan Francophone daily L’Opinion.

Laftit also sent a letter to the Walis- or governors- of Morocco’s administrative regions as well as workers and elected council heads, urging them to implement a set of measures aimed at reducing the excessive use of drinking water.

Morocco's Ministry of Equipment and Water declared a "water emergency" on 1 July due to declining water resources amid Morocco’s "worst drought since the 1980s".

Laftit has also appealed to local governors, asking them to urge elected councils to hold urgent sessions, in order to implement the necessary measures for the rational management of water resources and to ensure equitable distribution of water for all.

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The Ministry of Equipment has also launched a two-month campaign with the goal of raising awareness on water reduction practices, in light of the kingdom’s ongoing struggle with water scarcity.

In recent years, Morocco began to diversify its policies aimed at reducing to water shortages, issuing laws guaranteeing the right to water for all citizens.

However, recent data revealed alarming figures pertaining to the water deficit recorded at various water basins in the country. The National Office for Electricity and Drinking Water has admitted its inability to provide 54 cities and centres with drinking water in the summer of 2022, according to Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

Several determinants are said to have aggravated Morocco's recent water scarcity, such as environmental factors, high demands and over-exploitation of groundwater for farming.