Ghana has lost over 60% of its forest cover since the 1950s, with forest loss concentrated in the southern and middle part of the country over the past 20 years. The rate of deforestation in Ghana has ranged between 2-3% per year over the past 15 years, which is amongst the highest rates of deforestation on the African continent. Conversion of forests to agricultural land, and to cocoa cultivation in particular, has been identified as a significant driver of deforestation in Ghana, despite not the only one.
Ghana is the second largest global cocoa producer and cocoa is the main agriculture export product, sustaining the livelihoods of more than 800,000 small-scale households across the cocoa growing region in the country.
Goshen Global Vision with funding from ONE TREE PLANTED a 501(c)(3) non-profit environmental charity established in 2014 and dedicated to making it easy for individuals and businesses to give back to the environment is implementing the “COMMUNITY RE-AFFORESTATION PROJECT IN GHANA’S WESTERN REGION in Collaboration with COCOA BOARD AND THE FORESTRY COMMISSION.
Local communities and small –holder farmers are experiencing land loss for food crop farming, declining soil fertility, increasing flooding and droughts are all conditions that undermine their ability to feed and support themselves through faming. These practices have brought about decreases in tropical biodiversity and release of greenhouse gases.
It is therefore important to continue to support cocoa farmers to adopt environmentally sustainable practices for improved livelihoods and to restore degraded landscapes.
Widespread deforestation in Western Ghana is caused by competing land use, largely brought on by the discovery of oil and gas, increasing interests in rubber plantations, illegal small-scale (Galamsy) and rapid urbanization. These practices come with extensive forest clearing, leading to decrease in tropical biodiversity, an increase in greenhouse gas emissions, as well as a number of human impacts.
The purpose of the project is to;
- Reestablish the forest canopy in off reserves by raising and distributing shade and fruit trees to cocoa farmers, through the Ghana Cocoa Board to be integrating into their farms, alleys, parks and recreational areas.
- Reforest forest reserves and fringes (Cape 3 Points, Subri, Ankasa etc) in partnership with the Ghana’s Forestry Commission in the Western Region of Ghana.
- Up 2021, Goshen Global Vision with funding from One Tree Planted has raised, distributed and planted 185,000 economic tree species in 30 cocoa communities, Cape 3 Forest reserves, Subri Forest reserves and other forest reserves in the Western Region of Ghana.
Tree Species selection and area planted so far
- Terminalia Superba – Ofram
- Terminalia ivorensis – Emeri
- Tetrapleura tetraptera – Prekese
- Khaya ivorensis – Mahogany
- Garcinia afzelii Engl. – nsokodua
- Carica Papaya – Pawpaw
Established nurseries updated 2021
Daboase District Assembly premises – 25,000 economic seedlings
Mpimtsin – 20,000 economic seedlings
Mampong Cocoa CHED – 25,000 economic seedlings
Adubrim – 20,000
Agona Nkwanta – 25,000 economic seedlings
Medinya Cocoa CHED – 20,000 economic seedlings
Takoradi Forestry Commission Premises – 50,000 economic and Timber species
Benefits of the Project
- Cocoa and other crop farmers
- increased cocoa yield will lead to increased incomes for cocoa farmers
- Increased livelihoods – owners of timber species; fruit trees for sustenance and income, food security, medicinal plants, use trees planted as collateral to access credit facility.
- Improved ecosystem functions and services – flood control, improved ambient air quality, improved quality of water from streams, creeks and rivers.
- Corridors for migrating wildlife, carbon sequestration, improved soil nitrogen and fertility.
- Government / industry
- Supporting implementation of government/industry policies to eliminate cocoa deforestation and promote cocoa agroforestry.