Date of Award
Master of Science in Maritime Affairs
Maritime Safety & Environmental Administration
Bellefontaine, Neil A.
This dissertation is a study of the ramifications of underwater timber harvest for the environment and marine transport safety. The study is focused on the Volta Lake, located in Ghana. The work begins with a brief account of underwater timber harvesting in other parts of the world. Particular attention is paid to the modus operandi employed in the harvest and the effects for the country or region where this is taking place. A summary of the benefits and problems of underwater timber harvest is noted, following the selected global account. The dissertation then narrates the history of how timber came to populate the Volta Lake. The reasons that necessitate the timber harvest on the lake are explored. A detailed account of the phases of the harvest on the Volta Lake is presented. Furthermore, the technique to be used in harvesting the timber from the lake is examined. The final chapters of the work critically investigates the effect of the underwater timber harvest on the environment and marine transportation, with special emphasis on the latter. Other factors affecting marine transportation on the lake are explored. Finally, recommendations are made concerning mitigating environmental effects and making marine transportation on the lake safer.