Here’s Why Morocco Is So Important to Renewable Energy

There is a sustained push towards renewable energy in countries situated all around the world at the moment, which makes sense for a number of reasons. For example, non-renewable sources of energy such as oil and gas are some of the largest contributors to the greenhouse effect, meaning that they need to be brought under control if climate change is to be kept at a manageable level. Furthermore, non-renewable sources of energy are often major sources of pollution as well, meaning that a switch over to their cleaner counterparts can produce remarkable increases in local residents’ quality of life. Finally, it should be noted that non-renewable energy is non-renewable, meaning that it is impossible to count on them forever for the simple reason that their supplies will run out at some point whereas the human need for energy will not.

However, it is important to note that switching over to renewable energy is not without its fair share of challenges. For example, solar power is more effective in sunnier regions, much as how wind power is much effective in windier regions, meaning that some regions will always be better-suited to the use of these technologies than others. However, said challenges are not without their solutions, as shown by the country of Morocco on the North African coast, which possesses the potential to play an important role in the renewable energy sector of the future.

How Is Morocco Leading the Way in Renewable Energy?

In brief, Morocco is in an excellent position when it comes to renewable energy because it has plenty of land that is well-suited for collecting solar power and wind power. As a result, it has a strong interest in capitalizing on that potential as soon as possible. In part, this is because it wants to minimize its reliance on non-renewable energy, which is not just expensive for it because it has no sources of its own but also the single biggest contributor when it comes to its greenhouse emissions. However, it should also be noted that Morocco is concerned about its water security in a world affected by climate change, meaning that a strong renewable energy sector could serve as the economic cushion that it needs to withstand the inevitable disruptions that will arise as a result of large-scale change with minimal harm.

Regardless, the extent of Morocco’s interest in renewable energy can be seen in the extent of its investments in the relevant infrastructure. For example, it opened its Noor One solar complex in 2016, is constructing its Noor Two solar complex as of 2016, and has plans for a Noor Three solar complex, which will be distinguished from its predecessors in that it will use a solar tower rather than concentrated solar power, meaning that mirrors will be used to direct the sunlight at a central point rather than tanks filled with liquid super-heated for the purpose of powering turbines. Likewise, Morocco’s interest in wind power can be seen in how a consortium of three companies won a bid in 2016 to build five wind farms situated throughout the country, which will add up to about another 850 MW of renewable energy. Based on these as well as other choices, it is clear that Morocco is serious about its plans to increase its share of renewable energy generation to 52 percent by 2030 with the installation of 10 GW.

Moreover, it is interesting to note that this push towards renewable energy is but one part of Morocco’s commitment to combating climate change. Further examples can be seen in its choices to ban plastic bags, expand public transportation networks in some of its most populous cities, replacing its vehicles with their more fuel efficient counterparts, and even launching an agricultural initiative meant to help African farmers adapt to the predicted effects of climate change on the continent. As a result, Morocco can be seen as an excellent example of countries that are taking the proper steps to prepare for climate change in spite of their limitations, which is rarer than they should be.

How Can Morocco Help Other Countries?

Even more interesting, it should be noted that Morocco’s interest in renewable energy could prove beneficial to not just its own residents in the form of between 270,000 and 500,000 jobs by 2040 but also to its neighbors. After all, renewable energy can be transmitted over enormous distances, meaning that Morocco could send what cannot be used by its own people to other people in other countries that are just in need of energy as they are. Something that could put them in an even better position to weather climate change.

Can Other Countries Follow in Morocco’s Footsteps?

Morocco is blessed in the sense that it has the potential for both solar power and wind power, which is something that it shares with other countries such as Iceland, which possesses a similar potential when it comes to geothermal power. However, it is important to remember that potential is meaningless without the willingness to capitalize upon it, which Morocco has shown plenty of

With that said, even when countries lack Morocco’s potential, there is still much that they can do to prepare for climate change. After all, just because solar power and wind power are more effective in the North African country than in most other parts of the world, that does not mean that they will become ineffective altogether elsewhere, meaning that their installation can still prove a useful augmentation to existing sources of energy. Furthermore, there is more to combating climate change than just setting up renewable energy, as shown by some of Morocco’s other environmental efforts. In particular, it is interesting to note the country’s plans to plant enormous swathes of trees, which are not just useful for capturing carbon out of the air but also providing a pleasing setting for people to take pleasure from. As a result, it is clear that preparing for climate change can come with more than enough benefits to outweigh the costs, meaning that other countries can and should follow in Morocco’s footsteps.

References:

  1. https://www.moroccoworldnews.com/2016/12/204743/morocco-can-create-500-000-jobs-renewable-energy-sector/
  2. https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2016/nov/17/cop22-host-morocco-lights-way-africa-renewable-energy-2020
  3. http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/articles/2016/09/how-can-morocco-achieve-52-percent-of-its-electricity-from-renewable-energy-in-2030.html

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