AU awards Morocco for efforts to fight climate change, transform agriculture

Morocco awarded Best Performance in Climate Change Award, Best Performance of the Year Award 2020 for implementation of Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation.

LONDON – Morocco’s ongoing efforts to fight climate change and transform agriculture were awarded Monday at the 33rd summit of the African Union (AU) in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa.

The North African country was awarded the Best Performance in Climate Change Award and the Best Performance of the Year Award 2020 for the implementation of the 2014 Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation.

These two prizes recognise the fruit of Morocco’s efforts in contributing to the sustainable development of the African continent, which is the most exposed to climate change that has destroyed crops and livestock due to severe droughts and flash floods.

Morocco was ranked as the 22nd-most water stressed country in a report last August by the World Resources Institute, a watchdog of global resources.

Agricultural income is volatile in semi-arid Morocco due to the adverse outcomes of climate change.

The North African country said last month that it would spend $12 billion on water supply between 2020 and 2027 to meet increasing demand.

Morocco has invested billions of dollars in renewable energies as part of its strategy to reduce the carbon footprint and its heavy reliance on fuel energy.

The Noor Ouarzazate Solar Complex project, which is the world’s largest concentrated solar power plant and part of the Moroccan Solar Energy Programme NOOR, seeks to cut global carbon emissions by an estimated 760,000 tonnes annually.

In 2015, Morocco announced ahead of the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris that it aimed to reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases by 13 percent by 2030.

Green Morocco Plan

The AU hailed Morocco’s Green Morocco Plan as a model from which many African countries could draw inspiration in order to meet the people’s expectations.

Since its launch, the Green Morocco Plan helped grow agricultural output by 60%, from $8.17 billion in 2008 to almost $13 billion in 2018.

Morocco’s export agency Foodex said that the country’s agricultural exports rose by 97% between 2010 and 2019.

In 2014, African leaders agreed to pursue agriculture-led growth as the main strategy towards food and nutrition security in order to meet the growing population’s needs.