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Azrou Center Conference: Vulnérabilité des ressources en eau face au changement climatique et la pression anthropique "Cas de la province d’Ifrane"

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In celebration of the International Day of Forests on March 21st and World Water Day on March 22nd, the Azrou Center for Community Development organized on Thursday, March 21, 2024, in collaboration with the Friends of Nature Association, a conference on the theme: "Vulnerability of water resources to climate change and anthropogenic pressure - Case of Ifrane province."

According to its organizers, the objectives of this conference were to raise public awareness about the vulnerability of water resources in Ifrane province to climate change and anthropogenic pressure, present the results of recent studies on this subject and their implications for water resource management, facilitate the sharing of experiences and best practices in sustainable water management in similar contexts, and encourage dialogue among researchers, policymakers, practitioners, and stakeholders.

The conference program, aimed at researchers, policymakers, water professionals, representatives of civil society, and anyone interested in water and climate change issues, included a screening of a documentary on water and climate change followed by five scientific presentations addressing respectively "God's quotes on water, water-related phenomena and their doctrinal significance" by Dr. Abdellah BALLOUCHE, President of the Provincial Council of Oulémas of Ifrane, "Water and Climate Change" presented by Hassan ACHIBANE, Research Professor and Head of Biodiversity at Ifrane National Park, "Wetlands for a citizen approach to water management" with My Driss HACHIMI, President of the Ifrane/Azrou branch of the Moroccan Association of Biology Teachers, "The role of awareness and education in the face of climate change phenomenon" presented by Abdelali ADNANE, President of UNESCO Atlas Morocco Club and official at ONEP, and finally, a case study: "Sustainable water management for the 'AUI' Campus with zero emissions" presented by Dr. EL ASLI Abdelghani; researcher at Al Akhawayn University.

It is worth noting that Ifrane province is located in the Middle Atlas Mountains, characterized by mountainous topography, dense forests, and watercourses necessary for water supply. The region is subject to climate change, variations in precipitation and temperatures, resulting in reduced availability of water resources with an increased demand for this vital substance.

The activities of agriculture, tourism, urbanization, and forest exploitation exert pressure on natural water resources in the face of increased demand. The high dependence of the population and local economic sectors on resources makes the region, among others, vulnerable to the impacts of climate change and anthropogenic pressure. Faced with these challenges, sustainable water resource management in the province is crucial, requiring an integrated approach that considers the conservation of aquatic ecosystems, water use efficiency, sustainable agricultural protection, and community awareness.