Smelly water in Rabat: Clarifications from ONEE

For almost a week, the Rabat neighborhoods of Youssoufia, Yacoub El Mansour and Takadoum have been plagued by a stench from their tap water. Following the scandal of the pollution of the Sidi Ben Abdallah dam by wastewater from the prisons of Arjat 1 and 2, as well as from the commune of Sidi Allal Bahraoui, residents are worried about their health. They preferred to turn to mineral water to avoid any potential health risks. 

To ease tensions, ONEE issued a press release stressing that quality controls carried out by its departments at the various distribution points had confirmed that the water produced by ONEE complied with current quality standards. Despite the complaints, ONEE thus assures that the water supplied to Rabat is safe for consumption. 

ONEE also affirms that the quality of the water produced complies with current standards and is safe for consumption. Water quality management and compliance with Moroccan specifications are among the key missions of ONEE, which makes it a point of honor to provide consumers with safe drinking water. 

The deterioration in water quality in the dam lakes operated by ONEE is attributed to rising temperatures and low rainfall, according to the same source. ONEE explains that these conditions have favored the phenomenon of eutrophication, leading to excessive growth of aquatic plants and microalgae in surface waters. As a result, the taste and smell of the water have been negatively impacted, causing concern among consumers. 

In order to counter this phenomenon, which particularly affects the lake of the Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah dam, crucial to the drinking water supply of the Atlantic coast from Salé to Casablanca, ONEE has indicated that its teams have taken proactive measures. Water treatment has been stepped up with the use of reagents such as activated carbon and potassium permanganate, enabling the water to remain compliant with national quality standards. 

ONEE is also committed to continuous, regular monitoring of the quality of the drinking water it distributes. To this end, microbiological and physico-chemical analyses are carried out at various stages of treatment and distribution to guarantee the conformity and safety of the water supplied to consumers.

High temperatures can have a significant impact on the smell of water, particularly in freshwater sources such as rivers and lakes. This phenomenon is mainly due to the increased speed of chemical reactions in water as the temperature rises. More specifically, microorganisms present in water, such as bacteria and algae, multiply more rapidly at higher temperatures. This proliferation can, according to specialists, lead to an increase in the production of volatile organic compounds, such as aldehydes and ketones, which are responsible for unpleasant odours. 

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