The Saïss Water Conservation Project
Improving the climate resilience of agricultural systems in the Saïss Plain.
The resilience of the Saïss Plain is threatened by declining and unpredictable rainfall due to climate change, coupled with unsustainable groundwater use. Water scarcity is chronic, and demand is projected to increase in Morocco. 80% of abstracted water is used for agricultural purposes, so this water scarcity threatens agricultural production and rural livelihoods, with climate change being an important risk amplifier.
This project will switch the Saïss Plain from the use of highly unsustainable groundwater to sustainable surface water. A bulk water transfer scheme from the M’Dez dam to the Saïss Plain will be created, along with the preparation of a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) to implement new irrigation networks. This critical infrastructure will facilitate the transfer of water from a river basin with a surplus of water to the Sebou-Saïss basin with a shortfall of water resources.
Community involvement in water governance will be promoted, together with improved awareness of climate resilience issues among end users of water services, and the promotion of best-practices, efficient irrigation techniques with a significant demonstration impact across sector and region.
The result will be increased efficiency of water use and services, promoting drip irrigation and modern water demand management methods, thus strengthening capacity for adaptation to climate change in the Sebou-Saïss basin.
The project has an estimated lifespan of 40 years.
- Private sector
- Public sector
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