Business News of 2014-08-02

Human activities declining fish stock in Lake Bosomtwe

Human activities such as farming and washing along the banks and in Lake Bosomtwe have been identified as some of the causes of the declining fish stock in the lake.

Besides these activities affecting the fish stock, they are also causing the lake to recede and reduce in volume.

These findings were arrived at in a two-year research conducted on the sustainable management of the lake by the Water Research Institute (WRI), in collaboration with five other institutions.

Mr Osa Akrong, a research scientist with the WRI, made the findings known when he briefed the Minister of Environment, Science, Technology and Innovations (MESTI), Mr Akwasi Oppong Fosu, who toured the lake side.

WRI is one of the institutions under the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), which is also under MESTI.

According to the research, the increasing population along the 26 communities living along the lake and who depend on it for their source of water and livelihood has compounded the problem as more pressure is exerted on the water body.

The inhabitants of the 26 communities along the lake are mostly farmers and fishermen who farm along the banks of the lake.

Other effects

As a result, the depth of the lake is becoming shallower due to siltation from the sand that is washed into the basin from the banks as a result of farming activities. The developments have also affected the biodiversity of the lake because of the pollutants that get washed into the lake whenever it rained.

Currently, fishes in the lake do not grow as big as they used to.

Even though Mr Akrong said the findings were not conclusive enough, he contended that there was evidence that some of the activities were having a negative effect on the life of the lake and its sustenance.

He said because the lake was an enclosed one, nothing that went into it could move out.

Mr Akrong said the communities along the lake needed to be made aware of the negative effects their activities were having on the lake and be educated on how to preserve the lake for future generations.

Intervention

Mr Fosu, in his remarks, said the ministry would soon set up a committee made up of the traditional leaders, district assembly and other stakeholders, to ensure that the lake was restored to its former state.

The minister, however, did not state precisely when the committee would be formed.

He said aside from the lake serving as a source of livelihood to the communities and also as their source of water, it served as a tourist attraction and thus a national asset that must be preserved.

Mr Fosu also visited the Soil Research Institute (SRI), where he was conducted round and briefed on the operations of the institute.

Source: graphic.com
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