New Togo fishing port stokes coastal erosion fears | 7/11/2018 | Staff
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The fishing village of Agebkope and other seaside communities along Togo's coast have long lived with the consequences of erosion from the strong winds and waves of the Atlantic Ocean.

"Several multiple-storey houses have already collapsed and our cemetery has been affected as well," said village chief Jean-Dolayi Duevi.

Bodies - Cemetery - Baguida - Capital - Lome

"We have had to exhume 47 bodies and move them to the cemetery in Baguida" near the capital, Lome, he told AFP.

Erosion affects coastal communities around the world but is becoming a major environmental and social problem in Togo, where some 22,000 people rely on fishing to make a living.

Relentless - Wind - Action - Metres - Feet

Relentless wind and wave action is washing away between five to 10 metres (16 to 32 feet) of shoreline every year, according to Togo's environment ministry.

But in some places, it is eating into the coast by up to 25 metres.

Houses - Sea - Others - Brink - Country

Houses have been swept into the sea and others teeter on the brink, affecting most of the tiny country's 56 kilometres (35 miles) of coastline, some estimates suggest.

Togo is one of six West African nations to receive $210 million (180 million euros) in World Bank funding to fix dunes, build seawalls and dykes.

Tides - Result - Climate - Change - Activity

Rising tides as a result of climate change as well as human activity are blamed for the problem.

In Agebkope, locals blame the damage on the construction and expansion of the deep sea port in Lome since the late 1960s.

Others - Finger - Fishing - Port - Construction

Others point the finger at a new nearby fishing port that has been under construction since April last year.

The new port is expected to open in February and has been mostly funded by 14.4 billion CFA francs ($25 million/22 million euros) from Japan's overseas development agency.

Togo - Government - CFA - Francs

Togo's government has contributed an additional 2.1 billion CFA francs.

The 178 fishing boats using the dilapidated and overcrowded existing port will operate from the new berths, allowing them to prepare...
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