Study site location & description Print

The Sehoul study site is located on the Sehoul Plateau, just east of the city of Rabat.


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The area is located under sub-humid to semi-arid conditions; it is on the border of a cork oak forest, which means a quite stable environment. But, for many reasons, it is affected by desertification processes:

  • The cork oak forest is in a poor condition, due to overgrazing, wood cutting, forest diseases and climate change impacts on regeneration.
  • The cities' growth and the need for space for activities and transport.
  • The increasing pressure over the natural resources, namely soil and water posed by more intense agriculture systems, which are adopted to answer to the proximity of the Rabal-Salé urban market needs.
  • The soil is a made of a thick sandy leached horizon, which corresponds to old dunes developed in the region during a dry period of the upper Pleistocene; the humid conditions of the Holocene permitted the forest growth and the surface stabilisation; the current retreat of the forest creates again conditions for desertification, with the appearance of local dunes in the places affected.
  • The deficit of water and the competition between agriculture, urbanization and tourism on this resource.


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