Making a presentation at University for Development Studies’ Harmattan School, on the theme ‘Bridging the Gap between North and South; the NGO’s Perspective’, Head of Programmes, Campaigns and Innovations at ActionAid, Justin Bayor, posited that climate change is playing a major role in stifling development in the North.
“The North’s vulnerability includes the threat of floods, prolonged droughts, rising temperatures, unreliable rainfall, severe windstorms and other climate-related emergencies which are already negatively impacting agriculture and threatening productivity and food security,” he noted.
Fatalities due to floods in northern Ghana are reported to be alarmingly high and burdensome, and are usually occasioned by spillage from the Bagre Dam in Burkina Faso.
Indeed, between 2018 and 2020, 78 people were killed by floods; 23,371 houses were collapsed by floods, rendering 100,000 people homeless; and 94,379 acres of farmland was destroyed resulting in food insecurity for northern Ghana, according to data from the National Disaster Management Organisation.
Equally, the World Food Programme has indicated that at least three out of every 100 households in the north is either severely or moderately food insecure; and the poor nutritional status of children in the North is about double the national average.
Besides, more than 70 percent of northern Ghana’s population depend on unimodal rain-fed agriculture for their food, income and livelihoods.
The over-dependence on rainfall, declining soil fertility etc. coupled with limited access to inputs according to Mr. Bayor, has resulted in low agricultural productivity and incomes.