Water Balance of the Souss Basin

Francisco Olivera, Philippe Pallas and Mohamed Rachid in the Souss Basin
The Water Balance of the Souss Basin is a technical cooperation project undertaken by the Direction Generale de l'Hydraulique (DGH) in Rabat, Morocco, and the Center for Research in Water Resources (CRWR) of the University of Texas at Austin, with financial support and technical direction from the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome, Italy.

The main project activity involves exchanges of visits between professionals of the DGH and CRWR.

DGH is the principal water planning agency of Morocco and is responsible for assessment of water resources availability and plans for new water resource development projects in the country. GIS is used by DGH to prepare and store spatial data in digital form, to prepare maps for data presentation, and to prepare input data for hydrologic models.

The purpose of the project is to improve the utilization of GIS in DGH's water planning efforts by focussing on the water issues of the Souss Basin, a 20,000 sq. km. watershed in the South of Morocco whose main river flows into the Atlantic Ocean at Agadir. The basin has a central valley overlying an alluvial aquifer which supplies water for irrigated agriculture. Overpumping of this aquifer is resulting in groundwater depletion. Aquifer recharge projects to augment groundwater depletion are needed.

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