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Changes in wetland and other landscape elements of the Keta Municipal area of Ghana

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Coastal landscapes, including coastal wetlands around the world, are increasingly facing devastating threats and disasters due to land use and land cover (LULC) changes and coastal processes occasioned by climate change. The coastal zone of Keta and the municipality in general are affected by human activities and geomorphological processes such as sea erosion and flooding which are upsetting the condition of the coastal wetland, the vegetal cover and other landscape features of the locality. The rationale of the study was to estimate the transformations in LULC in the wetlands and general landscape from 1991 to 2018 and investigate the driving forces behind the LULC changes. This can help wetlands managers to develop well-tailored policies towards sustainable management of wetlands in Ghana. To achieve this, the study carried out a LULC analysis using Landsat data of 1991, 2005 and 2018. The study established that, there has been a changing pattern in the major LULC types, except for bare lands. Wetlands reduced in coverage from 182.33 km2 to 135.11 km2 while farmlands showed a continuous increase in landmass. Increased anthropogenic activities such as urbanization, farming and geomorphic processes such as sea erosion and tidal inundation owing to climate change are the key drivers of the transformations of the landscape of the locality. Enforcement of the national wetlands conservation policy, planting of mangroves in the wetlands and the afforestation of other degraded lands of the municipality will restore the ecosystem and protect the landscape.

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Source: Classified Landsat TM 5 1991 Imagery

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This paper is an excerpt of an MPhil thesis whose data collection was funded by ‘Periperi U’ project, University of Ghana. Authors also acknowledge the support of the people of the municipality in the field data collection.

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Correspondence to John Manyimadin Kusimi.

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Peters, M.K., Kusimi, J.M. Changes in wetland and other landscape elements of the Keta Municipal area of Ghana. J Coast Conserv 27, 1 (2023).

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