Category Archives: Economic Benefits

WASHplus Weekly: Focus on Fecal Sludge Management

Issue 153 | July 11, 2014 | Focus on Fecal Sludge Management

This issue focuses on studies, reports, and other materials that have been published so far in 2014 on fecal sludge management (FSM). Included is a just-published and comprehensive guide on planning and organizing the entire fecal sludge management service chain. A WASTE report evaluates FSM methods in emergency situations, and a Water and Sanitation Program  report examines FSM in 12 cities. washplus

EVENTS

3rd International Faecal Sludge Management Conference, Jan 18-22, 2015, Hanoi, Vietnam(3rd Conference Link) | (2nd Conference Presentations)
Building on the success of the two previous International FSM Conferences in Durban (2011 and 2012), FSM3 will bring together world-class research and science and donors, cities, utilities, investors, consultants, governments, service providers, and industries with the aim of fostering an effective dialogue on solving the problem of dealing with human waste.

GUIDES

Faecal Sludge Management (FSM): Systems Approach for Implementation and Operation, 2014. L Strande, ed., EAWAG. (Link)
This guide compiles the current state of knowledge of this rapidly evolving field and presents an integrated approach that includes technology, management, and planning. It addresses the planning and organization of the entire FSM service chain, from the collection and transport of sludge and treatment options, to the final end use or disposal of treated sludge.

Emergency Sanitation: Faecal Sludge Treatment, 2014. J Spit, WASTE. (Link)
This research aims to expand the knowledge of possible simple fecal sludge treatment technologies that could be rapidly deployed in the event of an emergency and are effective under challenging physical conditions such as unstable soils, high water tables, and flood-prone areas. Three fecal sludge sanitization methods—lactic acid fermentation, urea treatment, and hydrated lime treatment—were investigated by undertaking small scale field trials with pit latrine sludge in Blantyre, Malawi.

Facilitation Manual: Sanitation Entrepreneur Training, 2014. Water and Sanitation Program (WSP). (Link)
A WSP team felt there was a growing need for a standard reference for implementing sanitation entrepreneur training and developed a training program and guide that could be replicated and carried out independently by interested stakeholders.

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Umande Trust Sanitation Payment Innovations

Umande Trust Sanitation Payment Innovations being used at the Bio-Centers within the Urban Informal settlements.

What we can learn from Brazil’s wastepickers

What we can learn from Brazil’s wastepickers | by Kyle Wiens

Excerpts: By the time the World Cup ends on July 13, experts estimate that World Cup spectators will generate a staggering 320 tons of trash. Enter the catadores—waste pickers who earn a living by collecting recyclables from the nation’s trash heap, men and women who will dig through the garbage and pick out each aluminum can, plastic bottle, and glass container. And while their jobs may seem humble, their sweat and solidarity are helping to transform Brazil into a true world power in recycling.

Illustrations by Ben Sanders

Illustrations by Ben Sanders

The movement to organize waste pickers in Brazil began in São Paulo in 1980, when the Catholic Church helped start the Association of Paper Pickers, but it only came into the spotlight nine years later, when association members began protesting on behalf of their right to collect material from public roadways. The association’s work inspired other cities around Brazil to start similar organizations, which (among other things) is helping to end child labor in Brazilian dumps.

A Future in Recycling

In 2009, filmmaker Sean Walsh spent a month following Claudinês Alvarenga, a carroceiro, or cart hauler, for his documentary Hauling. Alvarenga, a father of 27, drove the streets of São Paulo in an old Volkswagen bus, recovering materials from curbsides, businesses, and dumpsters. He fixed what he could, resold what was salvageable, and recycled all the rest.

“Haulers such as Claudinês and his family are the most vital and also the most marginalized group in this immense [recycling] industry,” Walsh says. “They are also the agents of a new environmental world order, which is growing ever more important to our sustainable survival.”

The truth is, catadores and carroceiros are remarkably good at what they do. Necessity has turned them into reuse masters, repair geniuses, and recycling experts. They can sort recyclables more precisely and comprehensively than a machine can, right down to different grades of paper. Because of catadores, Brazil is a world leader in recycling: The country has the highest recycling rates for used aluminum cans—around 98 percent—and is second in world for recycling PET, a plastic used in food packaging.

IIED presents SHARE-funded City-Wide Sanitation Project findings

May 6, 2014 – IIED presents SHARE-funded City-Wide Sanitation Project findings at the 11th International Conference on Urban Health at the University of Manchester | Source: SHARE website

SHARE partner IIED presented its findings on the challenges and opportunities of different models for improving sanitation in deprived communities at the 11th International Conference on Urban Health at the University of Manchester. iied

The work presented was published last year in a paper entitled “Overcoming obstacles to community-driven sanitary improvement in deprived urban neighbourhoods: lessons from practice”. Sanitary improvement has historically been central to urban health improvement efforts. Low cost sanitation systems almost inevitably require some level of community management, and in deprived urban settlements there are good reasons for favouring community-led sanitary improvement.

It has been argued that community-led sanitary improvement also faces serious challenges, including those of getting local residents to act collectively, getting the appropriate public agencies to co-produce the improvements, finding improvements that are acceptable and affordable at scale, and preventing institutional problems outside of the water and sanitation sector (such as tenure or landlord-tenant problems) from undermining improvement efforts. This paper examines these sanitary challenges in selected cities where organizations of the urban poor are actively trying to step up their work on sanitary issues, and considers they can best be addressed. 

SEI-SuSanA Webinar videos online – Adding missing links in sanitation value chains

Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) has announced that five videos clips from the recent SEI-SuSanA Webinar 7 on 29 April 2014 are now online. The theme  – in their series of SEI-SuSanA webinars to examine the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation sanitation projects – was “Adding missing links in sanitation value chains“.

Contents:

Part 1 -Introduction by Arno Rosemarin and Nelson Ekane

 

Part 2 – Is a power auger “Excrevator” a suitable tool to empty pit latrines in South Africa and septic tanks in India? (includes presentation and questions) by Francis de los Reyes from North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA

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Waste not: Egypt’s refuse collectors regain role at heart of Cairo society

Waste not: Egypt’s refuse collectors regain role at heart of Cairo society | Source/complete article: The Guardian, March 27 2014 |

Excerpts – Zabaleen waste pickers are finally being re-integrated into the city’s services, a decade after they were sidelined.

A family at work in the Mokattam area of the Egyptian capital Cairo, where zabaleen collect, separate, sell or reuse rubbish. Photograph: Bernat Armangue/AP

A family at work in the Mokattam area of the Egyptian capital Cairo, where zabaleen collect, separate, sell or reuse rubbish. Photograph: Bernat Armangue/AP

For the waste pickers that have traditionally made a living sifting through the mountain of discarded litter that blights the streets of Cairo, there has been scant cause for celebration these past 10 years. Marginalised by a 2004 Mubarak goverment directive that placed household waste collection in the hands of multinationals, their existence has been one of ever increasing struggle for steadily declining return.

But change is afoot. Government acceptance that the corporatisation of waste disposal in Egypt‘s capital has been a resounding failure has paved the way for the formal integration of the zabaleen – who, for more than half a century, went door to door gathering the vast majority of household waste in Cairo – into the city’s official refuse collection system.

For a community that has served Cairo well, the government’s U-turn offers a deserved chance to change their lives for the better. Before 2004, the zabaleen would take the rubbish they collected back to their homes on the edge of the city, sort through it, and make a living from selling the salvaged materials to factories and wholesalers. The remaining organic waste would be fed to their pigs, whose meat also brought them a steady income.

But 10 years ago, this informal arrangement came to an abrupt end when the Mubarak government contracted four corporate firms to do the work instead – cutting the 65,000 zabaleen out of the process, and wrecking their collective livelihood. The aim was to professionalise the capital’s waste management.

Government officials now admit that approach was flawed from the start, and for the first time are starting to make the zabaleen‘s role official, giving them uniforms and vehicles.

“The others have failed, be they the government or the foreign companies, and now [the zabaleen] should get a turn, having been sidelined for so long,” said Laila Iskandar, Egypt’s environment minister, who has prioritised the issue since her appointment in July. “They are the people who have the longest experience in refuse collection.”

Garbage clinical insurance wins sustainability entrepreneur prize

Garbage Clinical Insurance: Young Indonesian Doctor Receives Award From Prince of Wales | Source/complete article – Establishment Post, Feb 12, 2014.

Excerpts – Gamal Albinsaid, a young Indonesian doctor, has recently been awarded the inaugural “Prince of Wales Young Sustainability Entrepreneur Prize” from the Prince of Wales. He was given the award during a dinner reception at the Buckingham Palace at the end of January. His innovative project helps the poorest communities gain access to health services and education through the collection and recycling of garbage called the Garbage Clinical Insurance enterprise.

Photo: Courtesy of Indonesia Medika/Gamal Albinsaid Mr Gamal Albinsaid received his award from HRH Prince of Wales during a dinner reception at the Buckingham palace  at the end of January 2014.

Photo: Courtesy of Indonesia Medika/Gamal Albinsaid
Mr Gamal Albinsaid received his award from HRH Prince of Wales during a dinner reception at the Buckingham palace at the end of January 2014.

Mr Albinsaid, currently the chief executive officer (CEO) of Indonesia Medika, is the Founder of the Indonesian social enterprise Garbage Clinical Insurance (GCI). He was inspired to set up the micro-insurance programme to empower people to take an active role in managing their waste while improving their sanitation.

The 24-year-old doctor set up the initiative in 2009 when he was still a medical student at the Brawijaya University in Malang, East Java province. Mr Albinsaid was saddened upon hearing the death of a three year old child from diarrhea because the parents could not afford to take the child to any clinic for help.

The GCI has help communities in need turn in their household waste into something that could improve their health.

The scheme provides insurance to members of the clinic in return for their garbage.  Every weekend, members bring their organic and non-organic waste to a collection point near the clinic to be directly processed and sold.

Afterward, collected garbage is processed into money considered as “health fund premium” for all members.

Rural sanitation market in India worth US$ 25 billion

Monitor Deloitte has estimated that the demand for rural toilets in India could be worth INR 500-700 billion (US$ 10-14 billion), with an INR 300-450 billion (US$ 6-9 billion) financing opportunity. This is one of key key highlights from their recent white paper.

Photo: Monitor Deloitte

Photo: Monitor Deloitte

The paper identified two main types of  business models to deliver rural toilets: the Do It Yourself (DIY) model and a Turnkey Solution Provider (TSP) model. Both models require a central player or ‘market maker’ to conduct market-building activities to get the models started. Organisations such as NGOs, microfinance institution (MFIs) and cement companies can play this role, while the Government has a key role in facilitating the development of the sanitation market.

The Government of India has approved funding of over US$ 4 billion for rural sanitation, but less than 60% of these funds have been used, the paper says. Census data indicates that many of these Government supported toilets may be non-existent or not-in-use.

Research by Monitor Deloitte in the Indian state of Bihar  showed 84% of households surveyed in rural Bihar indicated their desire for a toilet and 38% of these households had actually researched available product options. Safety of women, convenience and privacy as opposed to health were key drivers.

Deloitte is organising a series of open conference calls to discuss their findings on the following dates:

  • February 12, 10am IST
  • February 25, 10am IST
  • March 5, 9:30am IST
  • March 13, 9:30pm IST

Please request RSVPs to inmim@deloitte.com for more information and materials for the call.

WASHplus Weekly: Focus on Microfinance

Issue 128 January 3, 2014 | Focus on Microfinance

Many thanks to Blake McKinlay from iDE for suggesting the topic for this issue and for sharing an interesting study in Cambodia on determining the impact microfinance has on the uptake of latrines. Other resources include a just-published Water for the People review of its microfinance experiences in seven countries, a SHARE blog post on microfinance issues, and country studies from Ghana, Kenya, among others. weekly

REPORTS/WEBINARS

Understanding Willingness to Pay for Sanitary Latrines in Rural Cambodia: Findings from Four Field Experiments of iDE Cambodia’s Sanitation Marketing Program, 2013. N Shah, IDinsight. (Policy Brief) | (Complete Report) |
Given the low willingness to pay for latrines with cash, efforts to sell latrines at market price without any financing mechanism will lead to continued low penetration. The major implication of this study is that offering microfinance loans for latrines will dramatically increase uptake of latrines, while also making distribution significantly cheaper per latrine sold. Large-scale efforts to offer financing packages for latrines should be aggressively pursued in rural Cambodia and have the potential to increase latrine coverage from the current national rural level of 20 percent to 60 percent.

Evaluating the Potential of Microfinance for Sanitation in Tanzania, 2013. S Trémolet, SHARE. (Link)
Microfinance could be used in two main ways to promote access to sustainable sanitation services: by enabling households to spread out the costs of investing in household sanitation solutions (such as latrines and septic tanks), thereby improving the affordability of such investments and by supporting the development of a broad range of sanitation service providers, including masons, communal toilet block operators, or pit latrine emptiers.

Improved Sanitation and its Impact on Children: An Exploration of Sanergy, 2013. H Esper. (Link)
This child impact case study examines the positive impacts of improved sanitation on households and communities, using Sanergy’s experience in Kenya. This for-profit enterprise operates franchises in Nairobi’s slums and provides modular sanitation facilities and entrepreneurial training.

Market-Based Financing: WSP/RWSN Webinar Series, 2013. (Webinar) | (All Webinars) |
This webinar explores experiences with using local banks to provide commercial or semi-commercial loans for the construction, expansion, and major rehabilitation of rural and small town water schemes, using cases from Kenya and Uganda.

Microfinance as a Potential Catalyst for Improved Sanitation: A Synthesis of Water for People’s Sanitation Lending Experiences in Seven Countries, 2013. C Chatterley, Water For People. (Link)
To learn how best to facilitate sanitation microfinance, Water for People has been piloting various lending models with diverse partners in seven countries (Bolivia, Guatemala, India, Malawi, Peru, Rwanda, and Uganda). This report aims to synthesize these experiences to inform general guidance for initiating and improving programs, providing lessons learned and recommendations.

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A Market Led, Evidence Based Approach to Rural Sanitation

Monitor Inclusive Markets, with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has written a white paper titled “A Market Led, Evidence Based Approach to Rural Sanitation” on supply side market-based approaches to scale rural sanitation in India, based mainly on findings from the PSI-led “Supporting Sustainable Sanitation Improvements” (3SI) project in Bihar and supplemented by additional investigation of interventions in other parts of India.

The white paper explains that demand for toilets does exist in rural India, and the availability of quality and affordable products as well as financing are key levers to unlocking this demand. It goes on to propose business models that could profitably deliver solutions that meet customer needs, and highlights players in the sanitation ecosystem who could serve as the “market maker,” conducting market-building activities and creating an enabling environment for growth.

Please visit www.inclusive-markets.org/sanitation to see a more complete set of outputs from the 3SI project as well as annexures to the white paper providing overviews of some organizations already delivering sanitation solutions or providing sanitation financing in rural India.