Lab at University of Cape Coast

Research activities in HOTSPOT

The research activities in the HOTSPOT project are devided into four parts.  

1. Identifying the major contaminants and their sources 

Responsible partner: University of Cape Coast
Additional participants: DTU Aqua, LITEHAUZ, DTU Environment, COWI & ZEAL Environmental Technologies

This part of the project combines a desk-top assessment with a field campaign, to establish main onshore and maritime/ offshore sources of contaminants and to identify specific priority contaminants for the coastal marine environment.

Research activities include: 

  • Identification of the key sources and contaminants based on the desk-top assessment. 
  • Development of the sampling program.
  • Sampling at selected stations over one season. 
  • Sample analysis.
  • Delivery of the data to the data base at the Center for Coastal Management.

2. Investigating the effects of main stressors 

Responsible partner: DTU Aqua
Additional participants: University of Cape Coast, COWI & DTU Environment

This part of the project includes the experimental work on the effects of multiple stressors on single species (bottle incubations) and on populations and communities (mesocosm).

Research activities include:

  • Investigation of the effects of single and multiple contaminants on the selected key species, under temperature stress.
  • Mesocosm experiments with plankton communities exposed to selected stressors.
  • Sample analysis.
  • Delivery of the data to the data base.

3. Model development

Responsible partner: University of Cape Coast
Additional participants: DTU Aqua & COWI

This part of the project integrates the knowledge generated in the first and second part and synthetizes the results using simple conceptual, statistical and ecological models, which will bridge the gap between field and experimental results, and their application in management.

Research activities include:

  • Development of statistical and/ or individual-based models describing the effects of contaminants on the abundance, feeding and production of aquatic organisms as a function of contaminant concentrations and temperature.
  • Development of a conceptual model describing the sources and effects (in terms of bioaccumulation and pelagic production) of different contaminants in the coastal water of Ghana.
  • Preliminary development of a mechanistic model to predict the effects of contaminant releases under present and future temperatures in the coastal waters of Ghana.
  • Identification of the knowledge gaps in both conceptual understanding and parameterization of the models.

4. Research-based marine management

Responsible partner: University of Cape Coast
Additional participants: ZEAL Environmental Technologies, LITEHAUZ, COWI & DTU Aqua

This part of the project forms an interface between the research results and policy development, which will be further developed in Phase 2 of the project.

Research activities include:

  • Review of the current management actions (including port reception facilities) in connection to the new knowledge obtained in other parts of the project. 
  • Selection of the new results / knowledge which are relevant for policy development, and identification of gaps to be filled in Phase 2. 
  • Development of recommendations on how the projects results can be used in management. 
  • Development of a sampling program to be tested in Phase 2.
21 MARCH 2023