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Fedwa Bouzoubaa
Business lawyer – LL.M. Degree in European Law at Lausanne University – Casablanca

Energy efficiency is governed in Morocco by the Law n°47-09 of 17 November 2011 relating to the energy efficiency of buildings (« the Law ») and by the implementation Decree n° 2-13-874 of 15 October 2014 approving the building energy code (« the BEC ») which sets energy performance standards in buildings and establishing a National Committee on Energy Efficiency in buildings. The principal objective of the Law is to increase the efficiency of energy resource con-sumption, to reduce energy costs on the national economy and to contribute to sustainable development. It also encourages the use of solar water heaters and energy-saving light bulbs.

There are four main aspects to the Law:

1. Minimum Energy performance requirements:

The law sets the criteria of “minimum energy performance” for appliances   and electrical equipment powered by natural gas, liquid or gaseous petroleum products, coal and re-newable energies. No implementation decree has been adopted yet to specify these minimum energy performance requirements. In parallel, mandatory labelling under the Moroccan standard NM 14.2.300 applies since 2012 to household cooling, cooking cleaning appliances and also to household electric lamps. The Law also sets limits on the energy consumption of buildings and vehicles, providing for energy efficiency incentives in road transport, buildings and industry that should be fixed by regulations. The BEC is the first regulation adopted to optimize energy needs for heating and air conditioning for new buildings in the residential and service sector (tourism, health, education, administration, commerce and services) according to 6 climatic zones in Morocco.

2. Mandatory energy audits:

The law introduces the obligation for high energy-consumption sectors (institutions and companies) and individuals to carry-out energy audits. It also applies to companies and institutions in the production, transmission and distribution of energy. An implementation decree on energy audit is currently under development.

Energy impact study:
The Law subjects to an energy impact study any projected urban planning or new building construction program, regardless of use. A list of these projects is to be addressed in a specific regulation.

  1. Enforcement

There is no single body appointed by the government to enforce energy efficiency regulations in Morocco. Both judicial police officers and administration officers responsible for the energy performance inspections, are the enforcement authorities of the Law. Violations of the obligations set forth in the Law are punishable as an administrative of-fence in the main following cases:

  • fail to carry-out energy audits;
  • fail to comply with the minimum energy performance requirements in buildings, appliances and equipments using energy;
  • obstruct energy performance technical inspections;
  • sell in Morocco non-compliant appliances and equipments.

The above offences are punishable by a fine ranging from MAD 2.000,00 (approx. 180,00 euros) to MAD 300.000,00 (approx. 27.000,00 euros). In the event of a repeat offence, the penalty shall be doubled.

Strong emphasis on improving energy efficiency is also a key issue in the Morocco’s energy strategy. The organization in November 2016 of the climate change conference COP22 in Marrakech will hopefully contribute to accelerate the implementation process of the energy efficiency legal framework in Morocco.