planet sand and marsad drâa: the story behind by Carlos Perez Marin

In 2014 we participated in the filming of Planet Sand, a documentary series on desertification directed by Thierry Berrod and produced by Mona Lisa Production, ARTE France, HEILONGJIANG TV, UNIVERSCIENCE, CNRS images and IRD. The series has been aired in France (Arte TV) in May and in Spain (La 2 and in June, but it will shown in 100 channels all over the world.

Some people wanted to know how we contacted the filmmaker and how we convinced him to show our projects on this documentary series, in fact, we did nothing, he just contacted us...

This is the story behind our participation in Planet Sand (click on the image).

planète sable, arte tv by Carlos Perez Marin

This evening, on Arte TV, will be aired, for the first time, the documentary serie on desertification directed by Thierry Berrod. One of the 5 episodes will be consecrated to the Sahara desert and we explain the project we proposed from Marsad Drâa, rammed earth dwellings as barriers against desertification (made by Inssaf Bourhim and Najelae Chairich) and the research on dune barriers we are developing in Tissardmine.



dwellings-dune barrier projet

We explained the project made by Inssaf and Najlae in the same plot, in Amezrou. Later we went to other locations in the Fezouata palm grove, to show the consequences of desertification. Finally, we were in M'hamid El Ghizlane where the sand in "erasing" a village built during the 80s. 


dune barrier construction in Tissardmine 

In order to test the viability of the dwelling proposal, we built a curved rammed earth wall in Tissardmine (Rissani) during the documentary shooting.


We are still watching and studying the interactivity between the dune and the barrier...




skoura, ouarzazate by Carlos Perez Marin

The palm grove of Skoura is well known because it is closed to Ouarzazate and its airport, even if the landscape with the High Atlas mountains behind is quite impressive, there are other palm groves more interesting. The main problem is the abandon of agriculture, young people prefer to work on tourism (in Skoura, in Ouarzazate or even better in Marrakech) instead of working in their own lands. That inactivity carries on the impoverishment of farmlands and the arrival of sand, in the next desertification phase that will be the fruit trees to disappear, leaving only the palm trees, but they will finish to fall down.

The most interesting building is the Amridil kasbah, the owners are making an effort to rehabilitate it with the money visitors pay, keeping live the importance of this place.