Post #12: Morocco’s Biggest Challenge

When looking at the present problems in Morocco, the country’s most challenging task is learning how to allocate its water usage. I’ve talked about this issue in several blog posts, but I feel that this issue is important enough to speak about more. The main reason for this is that I believe that water is life. Without water, there can’t be life. It’s a simple compound, but it is necessary for survival and future success.

On Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, the first need that must be met is physiological needs. If these needs aren’t met, then none of the other needs will be met. This creates a major problem, and I feel that Morocco must meet this challenge before it can address other political and economic challenges in the nation.

People in rural areas of Morocco have limited access to water (USAID), and since the agriculture industry generates 15 percent of Morocco’s GDP, this is also another main source of water in the country (Brookings). The country is having difficulty utilize its water supply to its best potential.

The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs labels Morocco as a freshwater scarcity country, meaning the country has a low water supply. This department also showed that the water supply in Morocco is being overexploited and is being used in the wrong way. The government has not had much control over the country’s water supply, and this has led to many mismanaged strategies when concerning the country’s water supply (UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs).

3043Mission to Morocco presentation (This is a link to information by the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs.)

The UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs also states that by 2025, about 35 percent of the population will be suffering from water scarcity and will have an extremely limited access to water. At this point, Morocco would become a “chronically water-stressed” country (UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs).

To add to this, a large amount of the water supply in Morocco is contaminated with pollution (Tribal Networks). This makes it increasingly difficult to manage the water supply, as any polluted water is essentially wasted. A large amount of the water supply in Morocco’s cities is contaminated by sewage and waste, and in the rural areas of the country, there is a high amount of nitrate in the water. The nitrate enters the water through the chemicals many farmers use to protect their crops from insects and diseases. The nitrate seeps into the ground water in the area, thus polluting the water and making it unsafe to drink (PubMed).

As a result of this scarcity, Morocco must now find a way to solve the problem.

Currently, one way of addressing the problem has been created. In some areas of rural Morocco, farmers have developed a new irrigation system to water their crops. This system is called the drip system, and it allows water to drip down onto crops without wasting gallons and gallons of fresh water. The system has proved to be effective, and there has been less water waste as a result.

However, this is only one solution to a greater problem. In order to stop the problem completely, much more work must be done. The country must understand how it can reduce pollution and waste. Also, Morocco needs to educate its students about how to live more environmentally friendly. Students can learn about the pressing issues that are facing their country’s environment, and they can be inspired to develop solutions to these problems.

These problems will obviously not be solved by one person, and it will take the country as a collective to solve the issue.

The government is not exactly helping the issue either. There is hardly any regulation on the quality or usage of water in the country, and most of the country’s waste is dumped into the water. Drinking water does have some regulations, but the regulations are hardly enforced in the country (Global Water Intelligence).

Also, as I mentioned earlier, water is a major part of Morocco’s agriculture and industry. Morocco is one of the largest phosphate producers in the world, and because of this, a large amount of their water supply goes to this industry. The government owns this factory, and it earns the US equivalent of $4.5 billion a year. This is equal to 3.5 percent of Morocco’s GDP (Global Water Intelligence).

As you can see, there are a large amount of stakeholders in Morocco’s water industry. The government can only take so much action, and since there are industries and jobs that depend on using a large amount of water, it will be difficult to regulate this sector without making someone angry.

There are solutions to this problem, and it is up to this generation to find the solutions. Innovation must occur in the water industry because water is life. In order for life to continue and prosper in Morocco, there must be new solutions to the problem of water scarcity. Water is not something that can be grown, and because of this, both Morocco and the world must find new ways to conserve and utilize water effectively. Life depends on these innovations.

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