You will learn about potential solutions to Ghana’s water supplies issues in this half-hour online presentation.
In 2000, the proportion of urban dwellers in Ghana was 43.8 percent. Greater Accra has the highest proportion of urban population at 90.5 percent, followed by Ashanti at 60.6 percent, while Upper West has the lowest proportion of urban population at 16.3 percent. Statistics from the 2010 population census indicates that the population density rose from 79 persons per square kilometer in 2000 to 103 persons per square kilometer in 2010. The increase in population density implies more pressure on the existing social amenities, infrastructure, and other resources in the country. The concentration of industries and commercial activities in Greater Accra and Ashanti may partly account for the relatively high urban population in these regions.
The remaining eight regions are predominantly rural, with the level of urbanization below the national average. There are about 55,967 rural communities representing 68 percent of the total population of the country, where traditionally they rely mainly on sources that range from dug wells, ponds, dugouts, streams, and springs to rainwater harvesting from roofs for their water supply needs. Most of these sources, particularly those based on surface water resources, are polluted and are the main sources of waterborne diseases so common in the rural areas (Gyau Boakye, 1999).
In cities such as Accra and Kumasi, people have to carry containers around in search of water due to the inability of GWCL to provide continuous flow of water (Justin et al., 2012 cited in Oteng, 2008). Many people are coping with the situation by drilling boreholes in their homes at exorbitant prices (Anornu et al., 2009). Others depend on water tankers and sachet water for their day-to-day activities (Monney, 2011).
Though there is increasing water coverage nationwide, through IWRM there should be room to implement/introduce other affordable technologies as backups to enhancing access to water as a majority of the people living in both urban and rural areas having limited access to water.
There are some water quality problems including low pH (3.5 to 6.0) of waters found mostly in the forest zones of southern Ghana, and high concentrations of iron and manganese in many places throughout the country. High concentrations of sodium chloride and high mineralization exist in some coastal aquifers due to saltwater intrusions (Kortasi 1994).
One solution to solving the problem will be by adopting an IWRM approach. This will include private/public partnerships. And some conditions need to be in place for the situation to improve — i.e., technologies that are affordable and manageable by user communities, and institutions by which communities can gain access to such technologies.
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fax 614 898.7786
National Ground Water Association
601 Dempsey Rd.
Westerville, OH 43081
(614 898.7791 outside the US)
fax 614 898.7786