The Lake Volta Project: Outcomes and Capacity Building:

Project Background:

Lake Volta Landsat

Cage aquaculture has become an increasingly popular method of fish farming as it involves relatively simple technology and management methods (Beveridge, 2004). Although it is an emerging activity in Sub-Saharan Africa and Ghana, it is considered an important development opportunity in many Africa countries as it expected to help reduce hunger and malnutrition through increased domestic fish production (Blow and Leonard, 2007; Ofori et al, 2010). Ghana currently has an annual domestic fish production deficit of 460,000 mt, which is addressed largely through fish imports. Fish imports for 2007 have been estimated at US$ 262 million (DoF, 2007).

The intention of the Government of Ghana, according to the draft National Aquaculture Development Plan, is to reduce the domestic fish production deficit through aquaculture. The objective for the next 5 years is for farmed fish production from high priority zones such as the Lake Volta to increase by 1000 % (Draft report Ghana National Aquaculture Development Plan, 2011). Sustained long term development of cage aquaculture in the lake will require effective assessment and management of the aquaculture environment. Effective assessment requires accurate prediction of possible effects. Achieving this would require understanding the potential environmental impacts, social and economic use conflicts, as well as escapement and its implications to wild populations.