Adapting aquifer storage and recovery technology to the flood-prone areas of Northern Ghana for dry-season irrigation

Limited access to water, droughts, floods and other climatic conditions are major challenges to food security in Ghana. Over 70% of smallholder farmers in the country practice rainfed agriculture, which is highly vulnerable to rainfall variability. Flooding and waterlogging of farmlands limit land use and crop productivity. The Bhungroo Irrigation Technology (BIT), a system designed to infiltrate excess ‘standing’ floodwater to be stored underground and abstracted for irrigation during the dry season, was piloted in three sites in northern Ghana. Two BITs were installed in the Jagsi and Kpasenkpe communities in the West Mamprusi District, while the third was installed in the Weisi community in the Builsa South District. This paper documents the implementation of BIT, the operating principles and criteria for selecting appropriate sites for the installation of such systems, as well as the potential benefits complementing existing irrigation systems in Ghana.