Renewable Energy in South of Morocco and Prospects

  • Hassan NfaouiEmail author
  • Ali Sayigh
Conference paper


Morocco imports more than 98 % of its energy. As a result, it has turned its attention to renewable energy, particularly in the southern part of the country, with the objective of increasing renewables’ share in the country’s energy mix. Southern Morocco has significant solar potential. The annual daily averages of sunshine duration, \( \overline{n} \), range from 6.7 h (Tan Tan) to 8.7 h (Laâyoune), and those of the global irradiation on horizontal surface, \( \overline{H} \), vary between 4.87 kWh/m2 (Tan Tan) and 5.54 kWh/m2 (Dakhla). The estimated daily direct normal radiation in Laâyoune is 5.55 kWh/m2, which means about 3175 h of sunshine per year. Seasonal variations in sunshine, σ, and the clearness index, Kt, for Laâyoune and Dakhla are more regular compared to that in Tan Tan; σ decreases rapidly in summer. This particularity reflects the greater oceanic influence and consequently the presence of a microclimate around Tan Tan, a finding confirmed by the research of J. Buret-Bahraoui. Morocco enjoys an excellent wind potential, particularly in the south. The wind speed annual averages vary between 5.12 m/s at 9 m for Tan Tan and 7.64 m/s at 10 m for Dakhla. The annual frequencies for the class 0 m/s are small for the three considered sites, less than 4 %. A study of wind speed frequency distributions shows that the observed frequencies are well modeled by the Weibull hybrid function. In 2013, wind energy contributed 4.2 % to national electricity production. In 2014, installed wind power in Morocco reached 757.3 MW, with 60 % located in the south. Tarfaya has a 301.3 MW private wind farm. Wind electricity production is estimated at 1.119 GWh/year, making it the largest wind farm in Morocco and Africa; in contrast, Dakhla is not connected to the national grid. Its electricity is supplied by a diesel power plant (37.5 MW). Wind power can contribute to its electrification by coupling it to the diesel plant. Solar thermal power plants constitute an expensive technology and require considerable amounts of water to clean the reflecting mirrors that get very dirty in the desert region, so wind farms are economically and environmentally viable for electricity production on a large scale in southern Morocco. In addition, compared to solar energy, electricity from wind energy is half as expensive.


Solar radiation Wind Statistics Weibull hybrid Potential Wind farm 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Solar Energy & Environment LaboratoryMohammed-V UniversityRabatMorocco
  2. 2.WREC, WREN, IEIBrightonUK

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