In this article, I analyze the resettlement of three communities in the Keta municipality of Ghana as a result of rising sea levels that threatened life and property. Although a few studies have documented the effects of relocation because of slow-onset climate-induced environmental change, little is known about how such resettlements have contributed to positive social change in the affected communities. I used critical theory to determine whether Keta’s relocation process contributed to positive social change. Transcriptions of interviews with a purposeful sample of 35 household members were coded and categorized into themes for essence description. Improved educational infrastructure for personal development, improved housing facilities, saved lives and protected culture, and improved healthcare facilities and general well-being were among the positive outcomes. Hence, through this study, I provide evidence to consider the need to prioritize the positive social change such resettlements will make in the lives of the affected populations in climate-induced resettlement and adaptation in Ghana and other parts of the world.
Keywords: Climate change, relocation, resettlement, social change, sea level rise, improved livelihoods