Souss Massa - Meeting new energy demands through renewables

Assessment of the territories’ climate action


Association Climate Chance (Climate Chance)

Since 2015, the Climate Chance Association has been involved in the mobilization in the fight against climate change. It is the only international association that proposes to bring together on an equal footing all the non-State actors recognized by the UN. In order to strengthen their action and to give credibility to the climate stabilization scenarios, the Climate Chance Association launched in 2018 a Global Observatory of Non-State Climate Action, which aims to explain the evolution of greenhouse gas emissions, by crossing national public policies, with sectoral dynamics, private actors’ strategies, local public policies, and actions undertaken by the actors of the territory. In 2019, in order to analyse the coherence of local public policies, Climat Chance proposes 13 new case studies of cities and regions. Here, the region of Souss-Massa created in 2015 within the framework of Morocco’s territorial division plan.

To download : climate-chance-2019.pdf (1.5 MiB)

Governance and integration of climate policies

The Territorial Plan to Combat Global Warming (PTRC) of the Souss Massa region (October 2018), is the first territorial climate plan in Morocco that operationalizes at the regional level the National Strategy for Sustainable Development (SNDD). The document explains how the achievement of regional objectives will contribute to the objectives of Morocco’s Determined National Contribution.

In consultation with the actors of the territory (interviews, thematic workshops, etc.) and coordinated by a steering committee, the PTRC defines the contours of vulnerability to climatic hazards and carries out the first inventory of greenhouse gases in the region. The climate committee is in charge of its implementation and the monitoring-evaluation (Measurement, Reporting & Verification (MRV)) of the results. It will be supported by the Regional Information System for the Environment and Sustainable Development (SIREDD).

The PTRC provides for a bank of mitigation and adaptation projects representing a total investment of 2.98 billion euros (PTRC, p.41).

Monitoring and evaluation of climate policy

Energy-related emissions (44% of the total) are made up half of transport (45%), followed by buildings (27%), agriculture (15%), and industry (10%). As for non-energy emissions related to agriculture and land use (33% of the total), these are mostly emissions from enteric fermentation of livestock (58%), which could increase by +500% by 2030 in a run-of-river scenario. They are followed by direct and indirect NO2 emissions from managed soils (32%) and manure (10%).

The PTRC projects a 75% decrease in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, which is not expected to come from a decrease in energy consumption, which is projected to triple by 2030. Electricity demand is already growing at an annual rate of 7%. The total energy consumption of the territory in 2013 was 1 476 Ktoe (of which 720 Ktoe were oil products and 86 Ktoe coal).

Energy - Developing the renewable potential of Souss Massa

In order to achieve its objectives, the Souss Massa Region is above all counting on the decarbonation of its energy and in particular on its rate of sunshine, one of the highest in the Kingdom exceeding 8kWh/m2/day. This solar potential is added to the wind potential of the coasts. The rapid exploitation of this renewable energy potential, combined with an energy efficiency strategy, should contribute to the energy autonomy of the region and the country with a production of 1,120 MW of solar energy targeted by 2030.

At present the region is mainly based on pilot projects. The Ibn Zohr University (UIZ) and the Research Institute for Solar Energy and New Energies (IRESEN) are developing with the region maps of photovoltaic potential, which should help investors and individuals to assess the profitability of projects. At the same time, UIZ is developing solar cookers to reduce the use of wood for cooking in rural households. The Pumped Energy Transfer Station at the Abdelmoumen Dam is expected to have a hydropower production capacity of 350 MW. Finally, the 500 MW planned with the Noor Tata solar power plant project, which is part of the Moroccan Solar Plan, should reduce emissions by 9 MtCO2eq.

In 2018, the Regional Council validated a partnership agreement with the Moroccan Agency for Energy Efficiency, worth 2 million dirahms (Mdhs), 1.2 of which is dedicated to wind energy. This partnership will enable the creation of two units to measure wind speed in the rural communes of Ait Wafka (Tiznit province) and Tamri (Agadir Ida outanane) (Femise 2018).

On the side of energy efficiency and demand management, the regional strategy remains at the diagnostic stage. Agriculture has a high potential for energy savings, estimated at 30% in conventional water pumping systems and 20% in conditioning units. Finally, it is also worth noting the projects carried out either by the Region, such as the adoption of 70,000 photovoltaic LED street lamps in 10 communes of the Region, or by the actors of the territory, such as the Atlas Kasbah ecolodge, which avoids 17,900 kgCO2eq each year.

Waste - Making organic waste a source of energy and employment

Waste accounts for only 6% of emissions, but remains an important issue both as a means of reducing plastic pollution and as a source of energy since the majority of waste is organic and comes from agriculture and horticulture. The 950,000 tonnes of waste from early market gardening and citrus fruit production estimated in 2011 alone (INRA-CRRA of Agadir), could also solve the problem of soil impoverishment (via biogas or composting).

The FP thus focuses on the recovery of waste via biomethanisation. This strategy is already in use in Greater Agadir where the rehabilitation since 2009 of the Bikarrane landfill site has made it possible to generate biogas through the fermentation of waste. This degassing system (47 wells installed) would have made it possible between 2009 and 2015 to reduce GHG emissions by 68 MtCO2eq via flaring (L’économiste, 2017). The FP is continuing along this path on a regional scale with the establishment of a network of regional platforms for the recovery of agricultural waste (200 Mdhs), a project for the biomethanization of animal dejecta and manure (200 Mdhs), and a solid waste methanizer is planned in the Plaine area, south of the coastline (100 Mdhs).

Another response is the rehabilitation of local know-how such as the agdals, systems for the preservation of common forest and pastoral environments, or tanast systems that allow the Amazigh community to manage and time the distribution of water and to adapt to the new situation.

to water scarcity (Portail Sud Maroc 2016). The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has introduced a Japanese technique « Porous Alpha » in the market gardening production of Souss Massa, the results of which have demonstrated savings in water and inputs, as well as better yields.

Adaptation - Water resources, the region’s main vulnerability

Souss Massa is under increasing water stress due to a drop in the water table, which is ongoing, along with increased flood risks (260 points identified). A drop in rainfall of between 10 and 20% is already observable in the Anti-Atlas and Tata areas (Vulnerability study, 2016), and threatens to accelerate a drop in yields and exploitable areas, especially rainfed crops, and in oasis systems. 43% of the FP adaptation budget is thus allocated to support projects for water resource management (LesEco, 2018).

Many responses have already been made with the stakeholders of the territory both on the water demand and supply sides. A public-private partnership (PPP) has been implemented to improve access and sustainable management of the Souss aquifer by the 700 farmers in the EL Guerdane perimeter. Similarly, the seawater desalination plant in Chtouka, work on which (PPP) began in 2018, will be used to irrigate and artificially fill the water table of the entire region (Afrik21, 2018). In 2017, according to the Office régional de mise en valeur agricole du Souss-Massa (ORMVASM), 71,000 hectares of the region were equipped with drip irrigation systems as part of the Green Morocco Plan (MAP, 2017).


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