Newly operational ecosystem station in Ghana aims to shed light on the carbon cycle in the tropics

23 March 2023
Measurement tower at the ecosystem station in Ghana

On the 8th of March, a pilot project of the Institute of Global Change Research of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic (CzechGlobe) and the University of Energy and Natural Resources in Sunyani, Ghana, was ceremonially launched. The project focuses on climate change monitoring and supports adaptation to climate change at the level of the region and the entire country. It will enable the transfer and use of unique data in practice as well as education in the field of ecology.

The research will be carried out thanks to a newly built and equipped tower for monitoring the flow of carbon in the forest ecosystem in the Bia Tano forest reserve in the Ahafo region, Ghana. This was jointly built by CzechGlobe and the University of Energy and Natural Resources in Sunyani, as well as other partners: the Forestry Commission of Ghana and the Forestry Research Institute. The investigated ecosystem will be tropical rainforest and semi-deciduous forest of the northwestern subtype.

"The construction of the station was adversely affected by anti-covid measures, which significantly delayed its commissioning. I am pleased that after years of preparation, overcoming bureaucratic obstacles, securing financing and building the tower, we finally have a complete station equipped with state-of-the-art instrumentation for collecting data that will help us understand the global carbon cycle," said Professor Michal V. Marek, director of ÚVGZ - CzechGlobe.

The final equipment of the tower with measuring systems and sensors was provided by the CzechGlobe and installed by scientists and technicians from the CzechGlobe together with Ghanaian colleagues who completed doctoral studies in Brno. The installed sensors and data processing will follow the standardised protocols recommended by ICOS.

CzechGlobe is the host institution of ICOS Czech Republic national network which comprises of one Atmosphere station and three Ecosystem stations. The network conducts long-term research on the greenhouse gases and carbon cycles in the atmosphere and the main Czech ecosystem types: floodplain forest, evergreen needle leaf forest and a wetland.

Read more about ICOS Czech Republic here.

More photos from the ecosystem station in Ghana can be found here (in Czech only).