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PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Location and Size

The Pru West District was curved out of the Pru District in December, 2017. The District was established under Legislative Instrument (L.I.2335) of 2017 and inaugurated on 15th March, 2018 Pru West District lies between Longitudes 0030”W and 1026”W and Latitudes 7055”N and 8055”N. It shares boundaries with six (6) other districts, namely Pru East to the North, Sene West to the East, Nkoranza and Atebubu-Amantin to the South and Kintampo-North and Kintampo South to the West, all in the Brong Ahafo Region.

Prang is the administrative capital of the district with a distance of about 280km (Via Nkoranza/Techiman from Sunyani the Brong Ahafo Regional Capital. It is also 453km North of Accra, the national capital. The Pru West District covers an area of 2,195kmsq representing about 5.6% of the total land surface of the Brong Ahafo Region.

Climate

The District is located within the transitional zone, thus it experiences the tropical continental or interior Savannah type of climate, which is a modified form of the wet semi-equatorial type of climate. The total annual rainfall ranges between 800mm and 1400mm and occurs in two seasons. The first rainy season begins June whilst the second rainy season begins in September or October. The difference between the minor and major season is hardly noticed due to the transitional nature of the area.

The mean monthly temperature ranges from a height of 300C in March to as low as 240C in August. Mean annual temperature ranges between 26.50C and 27.20C. In extreme cases temperatures rise to about 400C.

The District comes under the influence of the North-east trade winds (Harmattan) between November and March/April. The climate in the District is hardly stable as in some years the rains delay or come in low quantities and in other years the rains come in excess with stormy and torrential down pours, which are sometimes destructive to both crops and the built environment e.g. in 2008 and 2009.



 Vegetation

The District falls within the interior wooded savanna or tree savannah. However, due to the transitional nature, the area does not exhibit typical savannah conditions. The savannah used to be heavily wooded, though most of the trees are not as tall and gigantic as those in the moist deciduous forest but due to the human activities, the current prevailing natural condition is not the best. There is therefore the need to embark on a Massive tree replanting under the youth in Agro forestry currently introduced by the government.

The existence of “fringe forest” along the banks of rivers, streams and other areas where the impact of human activities are minimal is evidence of the fact that the transitional zone was once forested. Trees are widely scattered in the district. Common trees species found outside the few dotted “fringe forest” include, baobab, dawadawa, acacia, sheanut trees, and mahogany which have adapted to this environment. Grass grows in tussocks and can reach a height of 10 feet or more.

1.4.5: Relief and Drainage

The topography of the district is generally plain with rolling and undulating land surface of an elevation between 60 – 300 meters above sea level. The district is unfortunately not associated with any significant highlands or hills except in the Abease and Benim (Buom) area where a few matured hills and caves can be found.

The Pru River, which is a right tributary to the Volta Lake flows across the Northern part of the district. The Volta Lake and the Pru River almost drains around the District. One does not leave the District without crossing the river and its tributaries. The sluggish flow of the river permits the depositing of alluvial soils on the river beds and along their banks. The fertile nature of alluvial soils is a great potential for increased food production in the district.

Soil

Soils in the district belong to a group called “groundwater lateritic soils” which cover nearly three-fifths of the interior wooded savanna zone of Ghana. These soils are formed mainly over Voltaian shales and granites. Most of the soils are fine-textured, ranging from fine sandy loams to clayey loams, and are mostly poorly drained. Crops that can potentially be supported by these soils include rice, vegetables, yams, cassava, maize, groundnuts, soya beans, cowpeas, tobacco and sorghum.

Geology and Minerals

The district is underlain by the voltaian formation which covers about two-fifths of the surface area of Ghana. The rocks belonging to this formation are rich in sandstone, shales, mudstone and limestone which can be harvested for constructional purposes in the district. There are also few deposits of clay which when given the needed attention can boost the pottery industry to generate revenue for the local inhabitants.

The rocks in the area are believed to contain gold deposits; however, no investigation has yet been carried out to corroborate this assertion.

Conditions of the Built Environment

Data extracted from the 2010 PHC reports indicates that the District has a total of 9, 579 houses containing about 57,233 households. Out of this number 76.9% of the structures are constructed with mud/mud bricks or earth and 1.3 % palm/earth/thatch. Sand Crete/land Crete forms 4.2%.

The main materials used for roofing of dwelling units were corrugated metal sheets (44.2%), thatch/palm leafs (54.3%). Most of the structures in the district are poorly constructed with low quality building materials. The phenomenon is probably due to high poverty levels in the district. There are no drains linking the various structures into a single system. The surroundings are generally unkempt, with exposed foundations and leaking roof of buildings. Deep cracks are also common on structures in the district. The structures in the district in fact are built/put-up in a haphazard manner. Adherence to Building regulations is very poor.

Key Development Issues

1. Poor drainage system

2. Poor quality of building materials

3. Poor hygienic environment

Conditions of the Natural Environment

With the District falling within the interior wooded savannah or tree savannah it faces serious threat of deforestation through pressures from human and animal activities such as housing expansion, farming, overgrazing, bushfires and timber exploitation. These activities have no doubt contributed to the seasonal drying up of some rivers and other water bodies. It is clear that given the current situation, a lot of conscious and sustained efforts will have to be employed if the natural environment is to be restored and resources sustainably exploited. The Youth in afforestation programme under the National Youth employment programme needs to be

supported seriously by the District to bridge the gap between the rate exploitation and re-stocking of the vegetative cover.

Key Development Issues

1. High incidence of bush fires

2. High incidence of illegal chain saw operation

3. High rate of charcoal burning and felling of trees

BIODIVERSITY, CLIMATE CHANGE, GREEN ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT IN GENERAL

Climate change is a change in the statistical properties of the climate system, when considered over periods of decades or longer, regardless of cause. Accordingly, fluctuations on periods shorter than a few decades, such as do not represent climate change.

The term is mostly used to refer specifically to climate change caused by human activity, for example, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change defines climate change as "a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere, and which is in addition to natural climate variability, observed over comparable time periods.

Climate change in Pru West brought extreme high temperatures leading to evaporation of streams, evapo-transpiration in plants and prolonged droughts, water pollution, etreme rains leading to floods, deforestation and disease infestations. Human activity such as deforestation can be considered a factor which has led to extreme effects of climate change in the district. It is observed that, Pru West district is rural characterized by scattered hamlets. Most of the population is found in these sparse settlements, deforestation is mostly attributed to the people who, day in and day out, cut down smaller trees for charcoal and firewood, for domestic purposes in the rural areas, and in the urban towns.

Food production in the district solely depends on the climate, that is to say, crop cultivation depends on the existing rain and weather pattern. Almost all the population relies on the product, both for domestic and commercial purposes. Food crop production and fishing remains the life-wire of the populace in terms of food and employment. Access and availability of food is one of the main concerns of most of the population and accordingly, engaging in agriculture is a good source of income. However, as the people rely so much on the climate to boost the production of its agriculture produce, with the fast-changing of the climate in recent times, agriculture produce might be in danger.

Accordingly, climate change will directly affect future food availability, and compound the difficulties of feeding the rapidly growing population. This has the tendency of putting the growing population in jeopardy making them more prone to risk and vulnerability, or become food insecure during the lean season, or at the onset of a shock, natural, or man-made disaster.

In as much as we recognize the implications of the impacts of climate change on the lives of human beings, wetlands and biodiversity, frantic and collaborative efforts must be made by the various stakeholders in the district and beyond so that, lives and properties will be protected with the future safeguarded.

 

Date Created : 2/4/2019 2:57:43 AM