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Effect of predicted sea level rise on tourism facilities along Ghana’s Accra coast

An Erratum to this article was published on 17 December 2014


Recent sea-level rise has mostly been attributed to global warming and this process is expected to continue for centuries. The extent of the impact of sea level rise on tourism in Ghana is unknown though there are predictions that some prominent tourism facilities are at risk. This paper assessed the potential impact of enhanced sea level rise (ESLR) for different IPCC scenarios on tourism facilities along the coast of Accra. Shorelines for 1974 and 2005 were extracted from orthophotos and topographic maps, and vulnerability for tourism facilities estimated. Mean sea level measurements indicated an average rise of 3.3 mm/year, while the shoreline eroded by as much as 0.86 m/year. Predictions for Ghana showed 10 cm, 23.4 cm and 36.4 cm sea level rise for 2020, 2060 and 2100 respectively with 1990 as base year. Modelled predictions for the years 2020, 2060 and 2100 based on A2 (enhanced regional economic growth) and B2 (more environmentally focused) IPCC scenarios indicated that 13 tourism facilities are at risk to sea level rise. Out of the total number of tourism facilities at risk, 31 % cannot physically withstand the event of sea level rise hazard. In terms of socio-economic vulnerability, accommodation facilities are the most susceptible. Salinization and sanitation problems along the coast will adversely affect tourism.

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The authors would like to express their profound appreciation to the following people for their contribution to the paper; Joan M. Looijen and Michel Damen (ITC, University of Twente, Enschede, Netherlands), John Ayer and Louis Addae Wireko (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana).

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Correspondence to Kwasi Appeaning Addo.

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Sagoe-Addy, K., Appeaning Addo, K. Effect of predicted sea level rise on tourism facilities along Ghana’s Accra coast. J Coast Conserv 17, 155–166 (2013).

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  • Mean sea level
  • Vulnerability
  • Coast of Accra
  • Tourism facilities
  • Coastal erosion