Funding of 836 million dirhams (MDH) will be mobilized to ensure the continuity of the supply of drinking water at the level of the Oum Rbia basin, the Minister of Equipment and Development said on Monday in Béni Mellal. Water, Nizar Baraka.
As part of the participatory management of water resources in the region, a partnership agreement costing MAD 836 million was signed for the financing and execution of urgent and structural measures at the level of the Oum Rbia basin. said Mr. Baraka, who chaired the work of the Board of Directors of the Oum Rbia Hydraulic Basin Agency for the year 2021.
The Ministry of Equipment and Water will ensure the implementation of this agreement by accelerating the pace of work on the Tagzirth and Oued Lakhdar dams and the raising of the Imfout dam, specified the minister.
It also concerns the programming of the construction of the Tioughza dam in the Azilal region in 2027 and the construction of small dams and hill lakes in the Oum Er Rbia basin, while providing financial and technical support. to the Oum Er Rbia Water Basin Agency for the implementation of urgent and exceptional drinking water supply measures at the basin level, added Nizar Baraka.
It is also a question of the construction of a seawater desalination plant to ensure the supply of drinking water to the city of Safi, and the establishment of a water desalination station. sea in the Casablanca-Settat region to ensure the supply of drinking water to the region in satisfactory conditions, which will reduce the pressure on the water resources of the basin, explained the Minister.
The Minister also cited, in this context, the realization of the project to link the supply systems north and south of Grand Casablanca to build capacities from the Bouregreg basin (Sidi Mohamed ben Abdallah Dam), and reduce the pressure on the Oum Rbia basin, as well as the realization of the project to link the Sebou, Bouregreg and Oum Er Rbia basins to transfer a total annual volume of water of between 500 and 800 million m3 per year.
Among the measures planned in this direction, the Minister also cited the continuation of efforts in the field of groundwater exploration in order to mobilize additional water resources and meet the growing needs for drinking water, and the continuation of efforts to strengthen the repair of water supply networks and increase their efficiency.
During this meeting, Nizar Baraka observed that the Oum Rbia basin is marked by an irregularity of water resources in the face of strong demand, noting that the hydrological year 2020-2021 experienced a remarkable deficit in precipitation. compared to the annual average, which negatively affected the volume of water supplies at the level of dams in the region, recording a total deficit of 53% compared to the annual average.
After stressing that water is an important pillar for the development of all countries and the locomotive of socio-economic development, he indicated that Morocco is committed to a water policy which has always been characterized by strength and proactivity. He affirmed, in this regard, that the Kingdom of Morocco, guided by the enlightened Vision of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, continues to implement in a sustained and sustainable manner the directives of this water policy, and to execute them. as part of an integrated and rational management of water resources, in order to ensure water security and achieve the desired sustainable development.
In this context, the Minister recalled the achievements made during the past year in the Oum Er Rbia basin, citing in particular the launch of calls for tenders for the construction of three dams (the raising of the dam Imfout in the province of El Jadida, Tagzirth Dam in the province of Beni Mellal and the Dam on the Oued Lakhdar in the province of Azilal).
He also reported on the completion of the renovation works of the drinking water supply pipe for the city of Safi over a distance of 4.5 km.
In addition, the Minister highlighted the growing socio-economic dynamism experienced by the region of Beni Mellal-Khénifra, in particular thanks to its large and medium-sized irrigated perimeters. He explained that great efforts have been made to achieve the necessary infrastructure to ensure the supply of drinking and industrial water in this basin, and in the Tensift basins and the Atlantic coasts, in addition to the water supply. irrigation.
Nizar Baraka added, in this context, that these efforts have enabled the Oum Rbia basin to acquire ten large dams with a total volume of reservoirs of 4.9 billion m3, and which help meet the needs. in water, especially potable, despite consecutive drought years.