Effects of shoreline erosion on infrastructure development along the coastal belt of Ghana: Case of Nkontompo community
The coastal areas of Ghana are the locus of rapid urban and industrial growth, oil and gas development, industrial-scale fisheries, recreation and tourism destinations. However, lateral changes in the coastline position has seriously threatened the equilibrium of the coastal environment and affected the socio-economic life of local populations, threatened cultural heritage and hindered coastal tourism development. This paper assessed the extent of shoreline recession and its effects on buildings and infrastructure along Ghana's coastline through a study of the Nkontompo
Community, a suburb of Sekondi in the Western Region of the country as a case. The study employed data spanning a period of 23 years, including Topographic sheets that were interpolated to establish the rate of recession of the shoreline. The extent of land lost in conjunction with the building density was used to establish the number of buildings lost. The study revealed that environmental conditions at Nkontompo have changed over the past three to four decades as a result of shoreline erosion. The coastline of the community has been receding at a rate of approximately 2 metres per annum. From the topographical sheet interpolations and analysis made by the authors, it was realized that approximately nine acres of the land, forming a third of the total built up area has been eroded leading to damage and subsequent loss of about 117 buildings to the sea. Recommendations have been made identifying adaptation techniques and strategies to manage the effects of this phenomenon along the coastal belt of Ghana.
Keywords: Coastal erosion, infrastructure development, Nkontompo, Ghana