At first I couldn’t understand what the young woman was doing kneeling alone in the middle of a dry river bed.
But drawing closer I realised she was using her hands to dig for water.
It’s the rainy season in Ghana and this shouldn’t be happening.
The young mother, Faustina Banasco, used to be able to fetch water from the River Akunle all year.
But no longer.
Now it is choked with the sandy top soil blown off the nearby fields; fields which have been stripped of trees by the local farmers who need the land to grow crops to feed their families.
This is the price of deforestation.
And in Northern Ghana, where most people live off the land, there is nothing to mitigate its impact.
Ghana is losing forest faster than almost any other country in the world: field by field, year by year. It has lost a third of its trees in 20 years.
Its population growth is also growing faster than most places too: more than 2% a year.
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