Assessment of the Volta Delta Shoreline Change

Kwasi Appeaning Addo

Shorelines fronting deltas evolve in their quest to achieve equilibrium state. Such activities have encountered the increasing human development in deltaic regions and resulted in the destruction of the environment and resources. This paper discusses the shoreline evolution trends of the Volta Delta in Ghana. The shoreline was divided into four sections based on the orientation and human interventions. Data sources for the study included satellite imageries of 1986, 1991, 2001, 2004 and 2013. Trends were statistically analysed using the AMBUR software. It emerged that the 27 years period under study, the shoreline is accreting at an average rate of about 0.53 m/yr. Section one is accreting at a rate of about 0.136 m/yr; section two is accreting a rate of about 1.703 m/yr; section three is accreting at a rate of about 2.126 m/yr; while section four is eroding at a rate of about 3.703 m/yr. This observation is significant because the area has been reported by previous studies to be eroding at a rate of about 8 m/yr. Accretion of the three sections can be explained by the presence of the Keta sea defense project (KSDP) and the shoreline orientation which influences the breaking pattern of swell waves that approach the shore. The observed development of sediment build-up will influence the sediment regime along the eastern Ghana and Togo coastal areas. There is the need to develop a systematic sub-regional coastal monitoring activity to effectively manage the coastal systems in the two countries.