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M. Said Mouline
CEO of the Moroccan Agency of Energy Efficiency

The years 2020 and 2021 were marked by the unprecedented covid19 crisis. However, thanks to the enlightened vision of His Majesty King Mohammed VI, may God assist him, Morocco was able to manage the pandemic in a responsible and solidarity-based way. All segments of society showed commitment and were strongly mobilized.

At the Moroccan Agency for Energy Efficiency, we have adopted that very mindset to ensure green and sustainable post covid recovery. Accordingly, it is necessary to change the economic paradigm and shift to green economy so that we can successfully meet the challenge of the energy transition and the reduction of greenhouse gases behind global warming. The green economy offers as well great potential in terms of job creation for young people in the south and north of the Mediterranean and for our entire continent. Indeed, the number of jobs in the professions of the future related to the digital and green economy are expected to increase considerably, as a result of support and capacity building. The green economy has gained in importance during the pandemic, particularly in Africa, where recovery efforts must focus on areas such as access to renewable energy, sustainable mobility, decarbonization of the industry and of course energy efficiency.

In Morocco, energy efficiency has emerged as a priority, along with renewable energies, ever since the launching of the national energy strategy in 2009. Ranking energy efficiency as a priority happened in an unfavorable energy context characterized by high fossil fuels prices and weak national energy resources development. In this regard, energy efficiency is a cross-cutting action which concerns all the sectors of the economy.

Given the major and growing role of the refrigeration industry in today’s global economy, the refrigeration sector is a critical driver for energy efficiency. This is due to the fact that refrigeration is not limited to refrigerators, freezers and air conditioning of buildings and supermarkets. This industry exists in multiple sectors and manufacturing processes, both in the food and pharmaceutical industries, as well as in plastics, chemicals, refrigerated transport and in many other sectors. The number of refrigeration-related jobs is also increasing in developing countries. The place of refrigeration should be better understood and taken more into consideration by decision- makers.
As a general rule, as countries develop their economy, their ability to deploy cold chains increases as agribusiness, industry, and transportation sectors grow.

Conventional cold chains especially for food are energy-intensive and also use refrigerants with high global warming potential and fossil fuel- intensive transport fleets to feed people around the world. Refrigeration is indeed an energy- intensive process, and leaks from the refrigerants being used account for 15-20% of global warming. For the African continent, where electrification rates are still very low, it is important to develop the cold chain in an energy efficient manner from the start.

Boosting energy efficiency in the refrigeration sector requires working on several aspects related in particular to regulations, standardization, capacity building, financing and change management to impact behaviors and operating modes.
To meet these challenges, the Moroccan Agency for Energy Efficiency (AMEE) has joined forces with the Moroccan Association of Refrigeration Professionals (AMPF) and the Union of Associations of African Actors in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (U3ARC). The aim is to speed up the adoption of sustainable refrigeration and cold chain solutions in the industrial, residential, agricultural and healthcare sectors in Africa.

This COP, organized once again on African soil after the one held in Marrakech in 2016, also needs to underscore energy efficiency and the adequate financial tools, which will enable our continent to achieve sustainable energy development for the wellbeing of its citizens.