Water shortage: Expert calls for active implementation of National Water Policy
Water Resources Expert, Dr Osman Alhassan, says the threat of water scarcity, due to climate change and the pollution water bodies, calls for a water harvesting culture.
“We need to do a lot concerning water harvesting and I think it was about time we made efforts to separate water use categories where for example we can begin with good water harvesting at the community level and district level and we could use that water for other things than household and drinking,” he said.
Communications Director of the Ghana Water Company, Stanley Mantey, recently said the rate of evaporation of water bodies across the country has become alarming and unless there is rain, there will be severe consequences for some communities.
He blames bad farming practices, illegal felling of trees and galamsey activities for the shrinking fresh water sources.
“It will be important to begin [water harvesting mechanisms] with institutional setups where it is easy to construct and then be able to replicate in other areas,” he said on current affairs programme, PM Express on the Joy News channel on MultiTV.
He suggests by-laws to force new homeowners to construct reservoirs that can hold a specified volume of rainwater, for instance.
Ghana’s National Water Policy is underpinned by the principles enunciated in the Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy (GPRS), the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the “Africa Water Vision” of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).
The policy document, which is gathering dust on the shelves of the Water Resouces Ministry, contains sections on integrated water resources management — including water for energy, food security and transportation), urban and community/small town water delivery.
The Policy also highlights the international legal framework for the domestic and trans-boundary utilisation of water resources.
Although Mr Martey, who was also on Thursday’s PM Express, revealed that the Ghana Water Company regularly dredges key freshwater sources, Dr Alhassan wants more investment in freeing choked rivers.