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Illegal Gold mining and water quality. A case study of River Offin in the Central Region of Ghana

  • Ghana as a country in the west of Africa is naturally endowed with many rich natural resources some of which includes; Gold, diamond, bauxite, manganese, cocoa, etc. Currently, it’s the second leading producer of gold production in Africa after South Africa. Gold production has produced a lot of benefits to the nation but at the same time contributed to many negativities ranging from pollution (water and air), land degradation, ethnic conflicts and deforestation. Industrial gold mining itself was never a big issue that caused any panic in the country till illegal gold miners “Galamseyers” also commenced operating. The sole objectives of this research were to determine the level of some specific heavy metal (Mercury, Lead, Arsenic and Zinc) concentrations within the Offin River in Dunkwa-on-Offin, Buabenso, Ayanfuri and Nkotumso. Results after the research revealed that, Ayanfuri recorded the highest level of concentrations. Nkotumso followed in that order before Buabenso with Dunkwa-on-Offin recording the least concentrations. It also became clear later that, even though the degree of intensiveness of the illegal mining “Galamsey” operations could have been a main factor for the increased concentrations, another finding was that, towns or communities that recorded higher concentrations throughout the study also showed to be towns that made use of inorganic fertilizers on its farms. The Minerals and mining Act 2006 of Ghana was then analyzed and conclusion was that, though the country has very strong policies regarding illegal mining termed “Galamsey”, there seemed to be institutional loop holes that have not been strong enough to combat illegal mining in the country. In recommending policy directives to improve the river quality, six (6) institutions including the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology(MEST), Minerals Commission of Ghana, Environmental Protection Agency, Forestry Commission and the water Resources Commission were identified with detailed recommended roles clearly spelt out for each institution.

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Author:Richard Boamah Adu
Referee:Prof. Dr. Lars Ribbe
Document Type:Master's Thesis
Publishing Institution:Hochschulbibliothek der Technischen Hochschule Köln
Granting Institution:Technische Hochschule Köln
Date of Publication (online):2018/11/15
GND-Keyword:Ghana; Goldabbau; Wassergüte
Institutes:Fakultät für Raumentwicklung und Infrastruktursysteme (F12) / Fakultät 12 / Institut für Technologie und Ressourcenmanagement in den Tropen und Subtropen
Dewey Decimal Classification:500 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik
Open Access:Open Access
Licence (German):License LogoEs gilt das UrhG