A Roadmap for 100% Renewable Energy in Morocco

The development and promotion of renewable energies have become central topics for Morocco, the host country of COP22.

In 2009, Morocco announced its goal to raise the share of renewable energies to 42% of its total installed capacity by 2020. And during the COP21, the government increased this to 52% by 2030.

Currently, renewable energies are the subject of a diversified portfolio for solar, wind and hydro anchored in a legislative framework, notably Law n. 13-09 on renewable energies to liberalise and develop the renewable energy sector in Morocco.

Morocco can go further and faster. Morocco still imports 95% of domestic consumption. The country faces a growing electricity demand increasing at an annual rate of 6.6% in the last ten years. And forecasts for Morocco see an increase in temperatures of 0.5 to 1°C by 2020 and 1 to 1.5°C by 2050 and 2080. Rainfall could decline by 30% between now and the end of the century.

The progressive liberalisation of the energy sector has been accompanied by the establishment of institutions to take up the challenges of the energy transition, amongst which: MASEN, ADEREE, SIE, IRESEN.

Further, in 2013, the government of Morocco announced the reform of fossil fuel subsidies, which cost 5% of its GDP. Since 1st December 2015, the prices of fuels obey the free play of supply and demand. Only the price of butane continues to be subsidised.

In this RE development, advantages are beginning to be shared by society as a whole. For example in NOOR Ouarzazate, the first project launched by the Moroccan solar energy agency (MASEN), covering 3,000 hectares with a total capacity of 580MW by 2018, Moroccan companies contributed « almost one-third of the value of the plant, supplying metallurgical, cabling, construction and public works components or services ». This generated 2,000 jobs of which 40% in the region.

Nevertheless, Morocco can go further and faster. Morocco still imports 95% of domestic consumption. The country faces a growing electricity demand increasing at an annual rate of 6.6% in the last ten years. And forecasts for Morocco see an increase in temperatures of 0.5 to 1°C by 2020 and 1 to 1.5°C by 2050 and 2080. Rainfall could decline by 30% between now and the end of the century.

Today, there remain a good number of political, economic, technical and cultural obstacles which stand in the way or slow down the transition towards a 100% renewable energy system. Moreover, the majority of actions are concentrated on the electricity sector, neglecting the heating and cooling as well as the transport sector.

To move towards a 100% renewable energy system offers the opportunity to change this reality. The challenge for the country is not so much a lack of energy resources but to fundamentally transform the way in which the energy system is structured.

Today, there remain a good number of political, economic, technical and cultural obstacles which stand in the way or slow down the transition towards a 100% renewable energy system. Moreover, the majority of actions are concentrated on the electricity sector, neglecting the heating and cooling as well as the transport sector.

In order to address the complexity, challenges and opportunities of the energy transition in Morocco, the World Future Council organised a process of reflection for Moroccan actors playing a leading role in this transition: parliamentarians, political actors, academics and civil society.

In this spirit, parliamentary hearings, conversations, and roundtables were organised between 2014 and 2016, guided by the following questions:

  • Morocco’s current energy context: challenges, renewable energies potential and energy strategy
  • Morocco’s leading renewable energy projects: main features, total installed power, production capacity, estimated cost, financing and entry into service dates.
  • Socio-economic benefits of renewable energies in Morocco: challenges being addressed up by renewable energy projects.
  • Guidelines for energy transitions: legislative, institutional and economic reforms.
  • Principal challenges for deployment of renewable energies in Morocco: political, economic, technical and cultural.
  • Recommendations to guarantee a successful energy transition for Morocco.

Overall, the goal has been the to identify the solutions for putting into place a coherent political framework which allows the materialisation of a 100% renewable energy Morocco.



A roadmap for 100% RE in Morocco

Morocco, COP22 host country, has since 2009 prioritised renewable energies and energy efficiency. Aware of the nature of the opportunities and stakes confronting its energy landscape, the nation has mobilised to share the message about the urgency and advisability of changing the pathway.

In order to address the complexity, challenges and opportunities of the energy challenge, the World Future Council organised a process of reflection for Moroccan actors playing a leading role in this transition: parliamentarians, political actors, academics and civil society. The round tables and conversations we organised between 2014 and 2016 are reflected in this report. We also highlight solutions for putting into place a coherent political framework which allows the materialisation of a 100% renewable energy Morocco.