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February 17th, 2006

Her Royal Highness the Princess Lalla Hasnaa has presided the Board of Directors of Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of Environment, at the Headquarters of the Foundation.

Her Royal Highness has gone over the following on-going projects :

- the « Clean Beaches » program : the three-years tripartite conventions in which are taking part the sponsors, the communes, and the Foundation have already reached term. New conventions taking account of the achievements and the recommendations made by the local committees in charge of the « Clean Beaches » program, have been prepared after discussions with all the concerned parties.

- Carrying on the effort to obtain the « Blue Flag » label in the maximum of seaside sites

- Environmental Education  Program : the « environment pedagogical kit » has been updated with the collaboration of the Ministry for National Education and the ONEP. Its content has become richer with more pedagogical illustrations. This kit has been distributed in all schools at the beginning of the academic year.

- Air quality program : Since 2006, a large number of actions for controlling  air quality and reducing pollution caused by cars’ exhaust fumes have been launched by the extended committee designed by the Foundation,  taking into account the results of the measuring campaigns, undertaken in 2005 in the axis linking Tangier to El Jadida.

- The protection and development of Marrakech palm : studies were undertaken in 2005 which have allowed to start the program covering the first quarter of 2006. A reflexion is going on for the creation of an eco-museum for oasis.

After having gone over the on-going projects, Her Royal Highness has proposed to the Board to launch two new structuring programs in 2006.

- the « Eco-schools » Program : as an extension of the environmental education actions in schools, the eco-schools label is granted to primary schools or to students, teachers and local associations working in a pragmatic and concrete way, on a given project, involving their institution, and dealing with three themes : water, energy and waste

- Green Key Program : as it is the case for the Blue Flag granted to beaches, the Green Key is a label granted to tourist lodging units which respond to specific criteria. The wish of Her Royal Highness is to have this international label in our country to contribute to the success of  Morocco tourist vision for 2010.

Before giving the floor to the Foundation’s General Secretary and to the auditor in charge of clarifying the financial statement and the draft budget for 2006, Her Royal Highness has thanked all the Board’s members for their participation and their precious advices, as well as the economic operators who have adopted the protection of environment as one of their most important concerns, responding thus to His Majesty the King’s wish to have the environment component at the heart of the Kingdom’s development plan.

At the end of the Board meeting, Her Royal Highness the Princess Lalla Hasnaa has presided the ceremony for signature of partnership conventions between Mohammed VI Foundation for the Protection of Environment represented by its Vice-President Mr. Lhoucine Tijani and the High Department for Water and Forests represented by the Adeladim Hafi.

- The General Department for Local Communes represented by the Wali Director General Mr. Saad Hassar

- The Wilaya of Marrakech represented by the President of the Urban Commune of Marrakech, Mr. Omar Jazouli

- The National Institute for Agronomy Researches represented by the Director General Mr. Hamid Narjis

The palm grove classified as a historical patrimony since the beginning of the 20th century, has suffered from many deteriorations mainly related to dryness, population growth and urbanization.

Being among the priority projects to which His Majesty the King Mohammed VI gives great interest, this operation has been launched in January 2005 by Her Royal Highness the Princess Lalla Hasnaa.

A reflexion has been led by the local authorities and elected representatives, the public administrations and the private operators among which the Office Chérifien des Phosphates, ERAC Tensift, Maroc Hôtels Villages subsidiary of CDG, Ciments du Maroc, ONA Foundation, CDG Foundation, as well as the important private groups in Marrakech.

- The program concerns the following :

- Reinforcing the density of the existing palm grove.

- Improving the conditions of palms by introducing new agricultural techniques, and extension of the palm grove.

- Integrating it within important urban projects.

- Creating an eco-museum for oasis as a cultural space for environmental education

-The cost of the project is evaluated at 85 million dirhams covering six years.

The palm grove of Marrakech, a priceless symbolic natural patrimony that goes back to the time of almoravides, covers the area of almost 3000 ha, thus giving the city a specific identity which contributes to its international reputation.

 

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