Overview

The Bosomtwe Land Restoration Project

Lake Bosomtwe is the only natural lake in Ghana. It is situated within an ancient impact crater that is about 10.5 kilometers in diameter. It is about 30 kilometers south-east of Kumasi the capital of Ashanti and is a popular recreational area. There are 22 villages with a common shoreline around Lake Bosomtwe, with a combined population of about 110,000 people.

Lake Bosomtwe is an important national, cultural and natural site of relevance for international conservation. The lake catchment spans two districts; Bosomtwe and Bosome-Freho, and consists of a mixture of three unique types of ecosystems – forests, wetlands and mountains – which contribute to the conservation of vital biodiversity.

Lake Bosomtwe, has been designated a biosphere reserve site by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to promote healthy balance between biodiversity conservation and its sustainable use.

Location

Latitude: 6°24’35”N – 6°35’33”N
Longitude: 1°19’22”W – 1°29’30”W
Midpoint: 6°30’16”N – 1°24’31”W

Surface area (terrestrial and marine): 28,699 ha
Core area(s): 1,159 ha
Buffer zone(s): 10,741.5 ha
Transition area(s): 16,798.5 ha

Project Deliverables

The project seeks to:

  1. Create awareness in all communities around Lake Bosomtwe on the importance of tree planting, environmental protection/ conservation, and climate change causes, effects and solutions.
  2. Adopt Conservation Agriculture to preserve farming lands especially around wetlands, rivers and water bodies and embark on agro forestry program that seeks to plant 3,000,000(three million trees) by 2025.
  3. Restore and protect areas around water and river bodies with responsible environmental activities like fishing and farming to mitigate the scourge of climate change.

Areas to be restored for the conservation project: 4,500 ha
Trees to be Planted: 3,000,000 (Three Million trees)
Potential Carbon Sequestration: 290,500 tons CO2

Species To Plant

The project has adopted multiple schemes for the tree planting. Particularly, a mixture of agro-forestry and pure plantation approaches has been adopted. In the case of agro-forestry, the project has liaised with individual farmers to integrate some types of trees on their farmlands and manage them.

Table 1: Plan for tree planting during the proposed project life span

Year Number of trees to plant Beating up for previous year (ca. 25%) Comment
One (2019) 300,000 NA No beating up
Two (2020) 600,000 75,000 Twice of year 1
Three (2021) 600,000 150,000 Same as year 2
Four (2022) 1,000,000 150,000 Slight reduction
Five (2023) NA 125,000 No new planting
Activities To Date

To this end, HRM Otumfuo Osei Tutu ll has commissioned Nana Adu Mensah Asare (Amakomhene) to chair the Project Implementation Team (PIT) to manage a seamless implementation of the project in due time.

The PIT is made up of all partner institutions who have signed up to be part of the project. The team is made up of executives of Blaze Metal Resources, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Commission on Civic Education (NCCE) Forestry Commission, UNESCO, Water Resources Commission, Forest  Research Institute of Ghana (FORIG) Fisheries Commission, Community Resources  Management Areas (CREMA), Ghana Tourism Authority, Bosomtwe District Assembly ,Bosome -Freho District Assembly, Forest Plantation Development Fund.

The PIT, since its formation has engaged all twenty-two communities in the Biosphere in training and sensitization on the project scope and deliverables. The team has also had:

  1. Identified all nagging challenges of all previous unsuccessful attempts to implement a project of this nature at the Bosomtwe area.
  2. The team has formed and commissioned a 20-member mobilization and local organizing unit in each of the 22 villages, headed by the Odikro , Gyase and supported by the citizens.  in all the 22 villages that have a common shoreline on the lake.
  3. Resourced each of the 20-member local units in the 22 communities with cutlasses, watering can and wellington boots. In all 440 volunteers have the tools to work with.
  4. Demarcated a “buffer zone” which is up to 60 meters from the shoreline for the phase one of the project that will seek to plant 300,000 trees around the buffer zone of Lake Bosomtwe in 2019
  5. The tree planting has begun in all 22 communities and we are on course to plant and manage 300,000 trees before December 2019.
  6. Lobbied the 2 District Assemblies (Bosomtwe and Bosome-Freho) to gazette the existing bye-laws and enforce it