Source of drinking water for the population of the old town of Taza. - - Management of Natural Resources in the Province of Taza: FAO/GCP/MOR/016/ITA. The stability and sustainability of the natural resources of Morocco (forests and rangelands) are under threat. The arid rangelands need to be managed in a more rational manner, using better management techniques to improve and increase production. The project is aiming to progressively improve the natural resources in two areas of the Province of Taza, in the arid plain and in the mountains, by correct management and by improving rangelands with the participation of the local population. A better lifestyle for the local population should reduce the necessity for people to immigrate to more affluent countries to increase their income.
In 1950 the Government of Morocco created the National Park of Tazekka to protect the ancient citron plantation there. The park is mountainous, between 1 400 and 2 000 meters, and is situated about 20 Km from the town of Taza. One of the main roles of the park is to improve the sustainable management of the forest ecosystem through rational use of natural resources by the population inhabiting the area.
Overgrazing of pasturelands, soil erosion and exploitation of the forest for firewood by the local population have all seriously damaged the environment. Consequently, measures have been taken to defend the soil and find new sources of revenue for the farmers such as planting olive and almond trees or trees to provide forage for animals. Irrigation systems and wells have been built and repaired in order to water orchards and market gardens. The area has been reforested with species of trees already present, such as citrus and oak, and rangelands have been preserved and improved.