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Entrepreneurs in the desert sun

Who would think that Morocco is a pioneer in solar energy and is investing heavily in achieving ambitious climate goals?

An expectant two-person team had prepared and prepared, with the next two years lined up before we left Germany. A number of African countries were on the itinerary – but already in the "Opening to Africa", Morocco, we did not get to customs. All of my partner's film equipment was snapped away in front of our eyes; only a small camera was allowed to pass as a tourist

Medieval and modernity

This as a warning to all Morocco travelers, and to set the stage for a country that is on the verge of two vastly different worlds: the first marked by conservative Islamism and panic-stricken terror, with indigenous settlements and armed police on every street corner ; the other a society that will open up to the outside world and modernity – environmentally, technologically and to assert itself in global competition. 

In Morocco, today there are almost no households without electricity. 

A recent example is a high-tech energy recovery facility in the middle of the desert, a couple of hours drive southeast of Marrakech. Here, MASEN – the Moroccan Agency for Sustainable Energy – has erected a gigantic solar power plant on the outskirts of Ouarzazate, a city that otherwise has little to offer, according to the waitress at our cafe.  

Light and warmth

King Mohammed and the government are trying to counteract the eviction from the countryside, and the district initiative is proving to be a patchwork of new infrastructure: Wide sidewalks have been laid and decorative street lights have been set up in every small town we come to – even in areas where there are hardly any people. Often the only new buildings are the police station, the town hall,. . .

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Ranveig Eckhoff
Eckhoff is a regular reviewer for Ny Tid.


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