Circular economy: a necessity for Morocco tomorrow

For ESEC, it is necessary to incorporate the principles of circular economy in the treatment of household waste and wastewater, which has a negative impact on national GDP. To do this, he recommends intervening with 4 axes.

A circular economy is no longer an option, but rather an obligation for Morocco if it wants to face the challenges of tomorrow. This finding was reaffirmed by the Economic, Social and Environmental Council (CESE), when it issued an opinion this Wednesday in Rabat on the circular economy, specifically those related to the treatment of household waste and wastewater.

Implicitly, according to figures presented in the presence of Nizar Baraka, Minister of Equipment and Water, and in front of EESC members, the economic bill resulting from environmental degradation due to the discharge of unprocessed wastewater has reached at 11.7 billion. dirham in 2014 according to the World Bank cited by the ESEC, which represents 1.26% of gross domestic product (GDP) with reference to the January 2017 report of this establishment.

Similarly, the damage caused by waste to the environment in Morocco is close to the equivalent of 0.5% of the national GDP for the year 2003, i.e., 3.7 billion dirhams. Which is considered one of the highest rates in the MENA region, not to mention the loss of job opportunities that should be generated by waste recovery.

In total, Morocco annually produces 8 million tons of household waste, including approximately 6 million tons at the city level, of which more than 65% of waste is evacuated to uncontrolled landfills, and nearly 2 million tonnes at the rural level. “NMD insists on circular economy so that it is present in various transitions, especially, ecological and circular.

The development of this economy is part of the government program. This question needs the support of all stakeholders who are collectively aware of this topic ”, explained Nizar Baraka, in his speech.

He added that “the circular economy is a death knell for Morocco which must call on unconventional resources to face all the challenges”.

Circular economy: Réda Chami advocates a national approach
In this sense, 26 controlled landfills receive nearly 32% of household waste while they could, in the future, receive nearly 46% with the goal of building six other first-class controlled landfills dedicated in the treatment of household waste and assimilated.

Moreover, according to CESE, wastewater discharge, in recent decades, increased from 48 million m3 to 600 million m3 between 1960 and 2005 to reach 700 million m3 in 2010, hence the forecasts for evolution, by 2030, will be close to 900 million m3.

According to the presentation made by the ESEC, as well as the main conclusions and recommendations of its opinion, the efforts made and above all the legal arsenal have shown its limitations to guarantee a transition to the circular economy because the current model is based. in a linear economy. So this arsenal needs to be updated in accordance with the details of the New Development Model.

“The current model of production and consumption has a negative impact on the environment and quality of life, so it is necessary to opt for a sustainable model based on the circular economy which is an alternative to the linear economy.”, Explains Ahmed Reda Chami , President of the EESC, in his opening remarks.

According to him, “It is important to adopt a national strategy for the transition to a circular economy because of the economic, social and environmental achievements it will generate for our country”.

Make the circular economy an option state
To do this, the number of recommendations released in the context of the ESEC opinion testifies to the hope placed on this project. There is no rumor that these recommendations were uttered around the four axes presented in detail by Mohamed Benkaddour, EESC member and rapporteur on this topic, and clearly uttered by Reda Chami.

In detail, for the first axis, it is a question of making the circular economy as a state option in establishing an institutional framework while establishing a governance model specific to the circular economy to activate modalities and mechanisms. associated with mobilization. of all sectors.

For Reda Chami, “it is also a question of setting up a coordination entity under government authority to ensure convergence and synchronization between different stakeholders to ensure this transition to the circular economy in through a sectoral approach. and territorial “.

It is also a question of setting up a structured law governing the circular economy and revising law 28.00 to facilitate this transition from linear economy to circular economy. In addition, it is necessary to launch a national strategy related to the circular economy and the activation of the polluter-pays principle in the field, as well as the extended producer responsibility (EPR) system.

It will also be necessary to set up a national and regional mechanism for monitoring and managing such a transition between different stakeholders. Regarding the second axis, it aims to change the perception that different actors and citizens have vis-à-vis waste, especially by talking about the notion of resources while redirecting policies. in management from one linear model to another. circular.

Regarding the third axis, this includes strengthening the technical capacity of operators by mobilizing technical and financial means to ensure this transition regarding household waste management, by integrating recovery with designated management contract. and the condition of state support through the strengthening of the circular economy.

Added to this is the fact of avoiding the import of costly technical and financial solutions without taking into account the national, regional and local contexts. In part, the fourth axis focuses on investing in research and development and innovation to make this transition a reality.

Yassine Saber / ECO Inspirations

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