Dwindling rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, Ghana: A socio-spatial analysis of the extent and trend

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Abstract

Rivers and floodplains in urban areas are under threat from anthropogenic pressures, and are among the most degraded ecosystems in cities in many developing countries. Spatial analysis and social qualitative data are used to ascertain the extent and trend of loss of rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, a fast urbanising city in Ghana. Results of the study show a drastic decrease in the number and area of the rivers and floodplains in less than 3 decades. The spatial extent of the rivers and floodplains reduced by 83% from 38 km2 in 1985 to 6 km2 in 2013, creating a sparsely distributed and fragmented inland water network in the city. To maintain such systems, it is critical for the city managers to strictly enforce a “no development” zone along rivers and in floodplains through integrated land use planning and people-managed relocation of settled illegal property owners in rivers and floodplains. The enforcement could rely on participatory processes and institutional collaborations to achieve positive outcomes such as high level of spatial and environmental quality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)82-95
Number of pages14
JournalApplied Geography
Volume90
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018

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Ghana
spatial analysis
floodplains
floodplain
river
rivers
trend
development zone
inland waters
land use planning
environmental quality
move
relocation
urban areas
Spatial analysis
developing countries
urban area
managers
land use
developing world

Cite this

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title = "Dwindling rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, Ghana: A socio-spatial analysis of the extent and trend",
abstract = "Rivers and floodplains in urban areas are under threat from anthropogenic pressures, and are among the most degraded ecosystems in cities in many developing countries. Spatial analysis and social qualitative data are used to ascertain the extent and trend of loss of rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, a fast urbanising city in Ghana. Results of the study show a drastic decrease in the number and area of the rivers and floodplains in less than 3 decades. The spatial extent of the rivers and floodplains reduced by 83{\%} from 38 km2 in 1985 to 6 km2 in 2013, creating a sparsely distributed and fragmented inland water network in the city. To maintain such systems, it is critical for the city managers to strictly enforce a “no development” zone along rivers and in floodplains through integrated land use planning and people-managed relocation of settled illegal property owners in rivers and floodplains. The enforcement could rely on participatory processes and institutional collaborations to achieve positive outcomes such as high level of spatial and environmental quality.",
keywords = "Encroachment, Floodplains, Land filling, Land use, Rivers",
author = "Paul Amoateng and Finlayson, {C. Max} and Jonathon Howard and Ben Wilson",
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T1 - Dwindling rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, Ghana

T2 - A socio-spatial analysis of the extent and trend

AU - Amoateng, Paul

AU - Finlayson, C. Max

AU - Howard, Jonathon

AU - Wilson, Ben

PY - 2018/1

Y1 - 2018/1

N2 - Rivers and floodplains in urban areas are under threat from anthropogenic pressures, and are among the most degraded ecosystems in cities in many developing countries. Spatial analysis and social qualitative data are used to ascertain the extent and trend of loss of rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, a fast urbanising city in Ghana. Results of the study show a drastic decrease in the number and area of the rivers and floodplains in less than 3 decades. The spatial extent of the rivers and floodplains reduced by 83% from 38 km2 in 1985 to 6 km2 in 2013, creating a sparsely distributed and fragmented inland water network in the city. To maintain such systems, it is critical for the city managers to strictly enforce a “no development” zone along rivers and in floodplains through integrated land use planning and people-managed relocation of settled illegal property owners in rivers and floodplains. The enforcement could rely on participatory processes and institutional collaborations to achieve positive outcomes such as high level of spatial and environmental quality.

AB - Rivers and floodplains in urban areas are under threat from anthropogenic pressures, and are among the most degraded ecosystems in cities in many developing countries. Spatial analysis and social qualitative data are used to ascertain the extent and trend of loss of rivers and floodplains in Kumasi, a fast urbanising city in Ghana. Results of the study show a drastic decrease in the number and area of the rivers and floodplains in less than 3 decades. The spatial extent of the rivers and floodplains reduced by 83% from 38 km2 in 1985 to 6 km2 in 2013, creating a sparsely distributed and fragmented inland water network in the city. To maintain such systems, it is critical for the city managers to strictly enforce a “no development” zone along rivers and in floodplains through integrated land use planning and people-managed relocation of settled illegal property owners in rivers and floodplains. The enforcement could rely on participatory processes and institutional collaborations to achieve positive outcomes such as high level of spatial and environmental quality.

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KW - Floodplains

KW - Land filling

KW - Land use

KW - Rivers

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