Oriental Region: More than 10 billion dirhams invested in drinking water and liquid sanitation over the last two decades (ONEE) – Media7

The National Office of Electricity and Drinking Water (ONEE) ensures the production and distribution of drinking water in urban and rural areas in the Oriental region and manages this service in 101 cities and towns in the benefit of 1.5 million people.

ONEE indicated in a press release that it had committed, over the last two decades (2003-2022) in the Oriental region, nearly 10.4 billion dirhams in the areas of drinking water and liquid sanitation, emphasizing that these investments have enabled the office to increase its drinking water production capacity to more than 438,000 cubic m3 per day.

The same source adds that this capacity is sufficient to meet the needs of the population until 2025 and beyond, through the operation of 4 treatment stations (Mechraâ Hammadi – Berkane – Nador – Zayou), and 145 treatment points. water, specifying that the production of drinking water from surface water represents 62% of the water produced by ONEE in the region. These investments enabled the construction of more than 11,530 km of pipeline for the benefit of 396,000 subscribers.

In the area of ​​drinking water supply to rural areas, ONEE, alongside other partners, has allocated more than 2.2 billion dirhams to implement drinking water supply projects, thus increasing the rate of access to drinking water in the Oriental region from 63% in 2000 to 97.8% at the end of 2022.

Concerning liquid sanitation, which constitutes one of ONEE’s strategic missions to ensure the protection of water resources against pollution and improve the living and health conditions of the population, the office, alongside its partners , mobilized 3.6 billion dirhams to carry out several projects during the period extending from 2003 to 2022.

The press release notes that these projects made it possible to provide this service to 1,240,000 people in 28 cities and centers through 23 wastewater treatment stations, with a total capacity of approximately 107,769 m3/day, adding that wastewater are collected and transported through a network of pipes exceeding 2800 km.

During the period 2023-2027, ONEE, in partnership with the Ministry of the Interior and other stakeholders, has allocated a budget envelope estimated at around 6.5 billion dirhams to carry out drinking water projects as well as liquid sanitation projects in the region.

The same source indicates that, as part of the implementation of the wise and proactive policy of HM King Mohammed VI, and which is based on maximum mobilization and rigorous management of water resources, the regional direction of the ONEE in the Oriental has been working since 2016, in collaboration with the various central and provincial components of the office and in coordination with the authorities of the wilaya, prefectures and provinces of the region, partners and stakeholders, for the development and implementation of projects in accordance with ONEE strategy. This has now enabled the region to have a significant stock of hydraulic structures and equipment ensuring a flow rate which exceeds the drinking water needs of the Oriental region.

ONEE points out that water stress resulting from successive years of drought has had a severe impact on the volume of surface water mobilized, so that the Mohammed V dam experienced, for the first time in its history, exhaustion. of its water reserves during the month of February 2022, as well as on the groundwater used by the office to produce drinking water in the region.

To deal with this situation, it is added, the proactive intervention of the State during the year 2021 was the most effective solution to this problem by taking urgent measures through the development of an emergency program costing 1.5 billion dirhams, in addition to strategic and structuring projects in the Moulouya hydraulic basin.

This program made it possible to supply the population of the majority of cities in the Oriental region with drinking water continuously during the summer of 2022, having coincided with the Eid Al Adha festival and the return of Moroccans residing abroad, according to the same source which notes that without the implementation of these urgent measures and the combined efforts of all stakeholders, including the central and regional commissions under the supervision of the authorities of the wilaya and provinces , the region would have experienced a drinking water supply crisis in 5 provinces which are supplied by surface water.

In this context, ONEE is currently working to carry out urgent and structuring projects which fall within its area of ​​competence and to accelerate the pace of work for their completion within the set deadlines, in particular the conduct of work on 7 stations. water pumping system and 13 water points with a total flow rate exceeding 380 l/s, some of which have been commissioned and others are being equipped.

The press release added that three water towers, with a capacity of 800 m3, are also under construction and that more than 50 km of pipes have been laid to reinforce and ensure the supply of the towns of Oujda, Taourirt, Laâyoune, Sidi Melouk and neighboring rural communities with drinking water in the medium term, highlighting the considerable efforts made to deal with the effects of water stress through awareness campaigns aimed at rationalizing the use of water.

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