Submerged Forests to be Harvested in Ghana, Touted As Way to Slow Tropical Deforestation
Of all the ways proposed to monitor, slow or stop deforestation around the world this may be a first: Reuters is reporting that Ghana is looking to harvest 14 million cubic meters (494.4 million cubic feet) of timber that was submerged 40 years ago when Lake Volta was formed behind the Akosombo hydroelectric dam.
$4 Billion in Timber Under the WaterGhana’s head of Climate Change in the nation’s Forestry Commission, Robert Bamfo, said that logging of rot-resistant hardwoods such as ebony, wawa, and odum will begin in October and will reduce pressure on Ghana’s forests, which are being chopped down at the rate of about 1.9% per year. It will also bring in an estimated $4 billion.Globally throughout the tropics, Bamfo said that there is an estimated 5 million hectares (12.4 million acres) of salvageable timber submerged in hydroelectric reservoirs.
Canadian Firm to Run Logging OperationThe underwater logging will be done by the Canadian firm CSR Developments, a company founded in 2005 to harvest submerged forests throughout the tropics, which will have a 25-year concession to harvest 350,000 hectares of submerged timber.
CSR says that when fully operational this project will employ 400 people and bring in more than $100 million in foreign earnings to Ghana each year. Additionally, by removing the submerged trees from the shallower parts of the 8,515 square kilometer man-made lake, transportation routes on the lake will expand and create new economic development in the region.
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