Ivory Coast, Coastal Erosion, Environment

Ivory Coast, Coastal Erosion

Ivory Coast town sinking underwater as coastal erosion advances

Ivory Coast town sinking underwater as coastal erosion advances

10.9.2019

Ivory Coast town sinking underwater as coastal erosion advances

The village of Lahou-Kpanda is sinking. In the past 30 years, residents of the once-thriving historic town 140 km southwest of the Ivorian capital ...

Some of the villagers have started to exhume the bodies of relatives, for fear of their graves being lost to the sea. Not all have managed to do so on time.

"Today we live in anguish. What will happen tomorrow if no one comes to the help of the village? We will disappear," said Daniel Loha, one of the village elders, walking by the graves.

In West Africa, where a third of the population lives along the coast, rising sea levels linked to the melting of the polar ice caps are conspiring with coastal erosion to slowly submerge communities.

Yet experts say poorly planned construction too close to the coast or using coastal sand as a building material worsens erosion and renders buildings vulnerable.

Samuel Amoussou, a fisherman who moved out of his home last June, walks through the remains of an abandoned house at Lahou Kpanda village in Grand-Lahou, southern Ivory Coast, on Aug 12, 2019. (Photo: Reuters/Luc Gnago)

For the whole of West Africa that figure rises to over US$3.8 billion a year.

Read more: CNA

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