Turning Sun Into Water In Parched Rural Morocco

Turning sun into water in parched rural Morocco

TAFOUGHALT, Morocco, Nov 9, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 09th Nov, 2016 ) - In the arid mountains of eastern Morocco, people know the value of water all too well. "Every drop is like gold. It should almost be measured by the carat," said local activist Najib Bachiri. Eight hundred kilometres away in bustling Marrakesh, negotiators are this week thrashing out the details of a landmark global agreement designed to stave off disastrous climate change.

But in Tafoughalt, a little village deep in the mountains of Morocco's Berkane province, that impact is being felt already. Rising temperatures are among the factors making the rains increasingly unpredictable. As a consequence, life for the residents of Tafoughalt -- who largely survive on subsistence farming -- is becoming harder than ever. "Here, the farmers work on small plots that are barely enough to feed their families," says Bachiri, head of campaign group Homme et Environnement ("Man and Environment").

The group is working to reverse an exodus from the mountains as people seek easier lives elsewhere. Bachiri says local problems feed into each other; isolation makes life difficult, which encourages people to quit the countryside. Abandoned fields lead to land erosion, which in turn also spurs on the exodus. And in the background, there is the constant shortage of water.