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Moroccogate: corruption and blood renewables in the Western Sahara

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Forbes or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: Morocco's occupation of Western Sahara raises significant concerns, particularly with the country's extensive plans for green energy production in the territory
• This includes wind, green hydrogen, and ammonia projects, largely situated in areas under military occupation

🔭 The context: Since the 1970s, Morocco has been engaged in a contentious occupation of Western Sahara, a territory rich in renewable energy potential but mired in legal and ethical disputes
• The situation is further complicated by Morocco's alleged involvement in lobbying and bribery within the European Parliament to legitimize this occupation

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: The conflict in Western Sahara highlights a critical intersection of renewable energy development and human rights issues
• It poses questions about the ethical sourcing of green energy, especially in regions under disputed control

⏭️ What's next: The ongoing situation in Western Sahara, with Morocco's push for renewable energy projects in the occupied territory, continues to challenge the international community's stance on legal, ethical, and environmental fronts

💬 One quote: “The Moroccan monarchy is trying to greenwash its occupation. It is trying to present itself as a leader in the energy transition, but most of its new projects are in the Western Sahara.” (Mahfoud Bechri, coordinator of the Western Sahara is Not for Sale campaign)

📈 One stat: In its 2024 budget, Morocco's government unveiled extensive plans for green energy production, with approximately 81% of the land for these projects located in territories under military occupation

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