Water is life. But a reliable, clean source of water is still a far fetched dream for many Ghanaians. Nearly half of the Ghanaian population lacks access to a source of safe water and nearly 2/3 cannot access adequate sanitation facilities. The country still faces huge challenges in water provision for domestic and agricultural use with erratic weather patterns causing droughts and water shortages.
Access to Safe Water
Currently, according to the 2021 Population and Housing Census as released by the Ghana
Statistical Service, 87.7% of the populace have access to basic water supply services. However, there is a disparity between urban and rural communities. About 96.4% of the urban populace have access to basic water supply services whiles 74.4% of the rural populace have access to basic water supply services.
About 8% of Ghanaian households continue to rely on unsafesources. Despite the apparently high access to safe water in urban areas, sachet water dominate (51.5%), with pipe-borne water accounting for only 33.6%2. The vision is to have about 70% of populace/households in urban/peri-urban and 50% in rural areas are connected to a piped water network and using safely managed water services by 2030.
Progress in access to basic improved sanitation has not been as impressive as water. As of 2021, only 25.3% (PHC 2021) of the national population had access to improved sanitation that is not shared. About 17.7% of Ghanaians still practice open defecation. The cost of poor sanitation in the country is high as Ghana loses about US$ 290 million annually due to poor sanitation (World Bank, WSP 2012).
This is the equivalent of US$12 per person in Ghana per year or 1.6% of the national GDP. The country also loses an additional US$ 79 million as a result of open defecation.
Liquid Waste Management
As a result of urbanization and economic development the volume of wastewater will increase
significantly. It is estimated that the production of liquid waste will increase along population
growth and urbanisation. While small scale sewerage and wastewater treatment facilities may
receive emphasis in the coming years, septic tanks are expected to remain the most common
used systems. Bio-digesters have just started to enter the market, and will take time to become significant in terms of number of households installing them across the country. The provision of desludging services thus needs to be significantly expanded, both in quantity and quality. The emphasis on livelihoods in the sector new focus calls for increased efforts towards resource recovery and re-use of waste rather than the current scenario of treating and dumping.
The proportion of people in Ghana having access to hand hygiene facilities has increas
ARA IN GHANA Our goal is to improve the health and economic well-being of low-income and underserved communities by facilitating equitable and sustainable access to safe water, sanitation, and appropriate hygiene practices.