Several technologies displayed at the Reinvent the Toilet Fair: India “will be field tested in coming months in cities across India and Africa”, writes Doulaye Koné in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) blog “Impatient Optimists”.
These include reinvented toilet technologies, pit latrine and septic tank emptying technologies, as well as sludge-to-energy processing technologies. Some of the participants at the fair in New Delhi, like the President of the Fecal Sludge Emptying Association from Senegal, wanted to buy some of the technologies on display on the spot. He was very disappointed to learn that we still need to do additional testing to validate their performances before commercialization but we were thrilled about his excitement.
Beside the field testing, the BMGF has announced a collaboration agreement with the South African government on sanitation innovation solutions. The Department of Science and Technology (DST) has committed ZAR 30 million (US$ 2.7 million) to test and promote toilet technologies being developed by BMGF grantees in schools and rural communities in South Africa. BMGF is contributing US$ 1 million to support the testing of technologies selected. South Africa’s Water Research Commission is the implementing agency.
“In terms of rural school sanitation, the technologies will be demonstrated in the Cofimvaba district in the Eastern Cape as part of the Technology for Rural Education Development project,” the department said. “The technologies will also be demonstrated in the 23 district municipalities that have been identified by the government as critical in terms of service delivery.”
More information on BMGF sanitation grantees is avaialable on SuSanA.org.
- Doulaye Koné , What Happened at the “Reinvent the Toilet Fair: India” and What’s Next?, Impatient Optimists, 11 Apr 2004
- South Africa, Gates Foundation to ‘reinvent the toilet’, SouthAfrica.info, 28 Mar 2014
Water and Sanitation for Africa (WSA) has signed a memorandum of understanding with Malaysian firm Indah Water Konsortium Sdn Bhd for technical know-how and consultancy services in sewerage management in African countries.
WSA selected Indah Water “to be in a technical committee formed by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to propose immediate, medium- and long-term solutions for sanitation services in WSA member countries”. In 2011-2012 WSA received three Gates Foundation grants totalling US$ 7.2 million, one of which to develop sanitation financing models for urban poor and another to set an African Sanitation Think Tank.
Chief Executive Officer Datuk Abdul Kadir Mohd Din said that the Gates Foundation “had sent a team of wastewater experts from the United States to visit Indah Water after visiting the African continent and Asean countries”.
Indah Water is Malaysia’s national sewerage company. In 1994, the Federal Government awarded the company the concession for nationwide sewerage services which before were the responsibility of local authorities.
Water and Sanitation for Africa (WSA) is a Pan African Inter-governmental Agency based in Burkina Faso, previously known as the African Regional Centre for Water and Sanitation (CREPA). WSA has a presence in 32 African countries.
Source: Bernama, 16 May 2013
On World WaterDay, 22 March, the World Bank announced the Top 10 Finalists of the Sanitation Hackathon App Challenge. The challenge is a follow-up to the Sanitation Hackathon, which attracted over 1,100 developers in December 2012 to solve sanitation problems.
The Top 10 Finalists apps are:
- Empowering Girls monitors girls’ school attendance to track appropriate sanitation facilities.
- LION Sync provides decision-makers with access to real-time data online and offline.
- LooRewards promotes sanitary behavior by rewarding safe sanitation practices.
- mSchool monitors the status of water and sanitation infrastructure in schools.
- mSewage crowdsources the identification of open defecation sites and sewage outflows.
- San-Trac reminds users about hygienic practices and gathers real-time data for trend analysis (winner of the People’s Choice Award)
- Sanitation Investment Tracker tracks investment and expenditure in sanitation at the household level.
- SunClean teaches sanitary and hygienic behavior through games for children.
- Taarifa enables citizen reporting and tracks decision-makers’ feedback.
- Toilight finds toilets in a smart and easy way.
For more information on the apps click on the video links above or go here.
The Grand Prize Award winners will be announced on April 19, on the eve of the World Bank’s Spring Meetings.
Source: SanHack Team, SanitationHackathon.org, 22 Mar 2013
Terra Preta soil. Photo: TUHH
This conference brings together experts from different sectors – water/sanitation, agriculture, soil, energy and health – to share experiences in the new field of Terra Preta Sanitation (TPS). TPS is being promoted as integrated sustainable solution to address poor sanitation, food insecurity, and soil degradation. It is inspired by the discovery of the anthropogenic ancient soils in the Amazon called Terra Preta.
IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre announces a renewed research call for:
Faecal sludge secondary treatment technologies for challenging settings
This call is part of the BRAC WASH II programme in which EUR 1.5 million will be used for innovative research, tendered to consortia of leading European and Bangladeshi research organisations.
The planned duration of the faecal sludge research project will be 18 months.
The anticipated cost of the project is EUR 325,000. In addition there is EUR 50,000 available for piloting. (Separate budget needs to be included for this).
To download the guidelines and application form go to: www.irc.nl/page/73136
The deadline for submission of full proposal application forms is: 11 January 2013.
Future research calls will focus on low-cost water supply technologies; Geo-referenced database for monitoring; menstrual hygiene management; and saline intrusion.
Please do not send requests for information or applications to the Sanitation Updates blog.
Getting ready to access the pit for emptying, eThekwini , South Africa. Photo: Elisabeth von Muench, SuSanA
Since many experts believe that flush toilets and sewerage are unaffordable for the large majority urban and rural communities, faecal sludge management (FSM) is seen as a key link to up-scaling sanitation.
But do we need to reinvent the toilet or invent a sanitation industry? That was the concluding thought of Water for People’s Steven Sugden, one of the 100 or so presenters at the Second International Faecal Sludge Management conference (FSM2). Looking at all the presentations, the impression you get is that we need both better technologies and better business models.
FSM2 ook place in Durban, South Africa from 29-31 October 2012. The conference was structured around the following themes:
- On-site Sanitation as a Business
- Socio-political Aspects of On-site Sanitation
- Understanding On-site Sanitation
- Toilet Design for FSM Optimisation
- Pit Emptying – What are the Options?
- The How of Faecal Sludge Treatment
- Waste Not Want Not – Beneficial Use of Faecal Sludges
- Technology and Innovation
- Health Aspects of Faecal Sludges
All the presentations are available on the SuSanA website.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has chosen the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA) to lead a new sanitation learning and sharing platform.
The Gates Foundation’s Sanitation Science and Technology Programme has over 80 projects. SEI and SuSanA have been tasked to share the results from these projects in an open public forum engaging a broad range of experts and the general public.
Over the next 15 months SEI will work with the Programme Grantees of the Foundation in order to broaden understanding and discussion about their work. The grantees will be encouraged to work through the SuSanA that has about 200 institutional members and some 2000 discussants on its Discussion Forum (www.forum.susana.org).
In August 2012, the Foundation gave a grant to the Water and Sanitation for Africa (WSA) to set up the Africa Sanitation Think Tank (ASTT).
Related web sites:
Source: SEI, 09 Nov 2012
The Water, Sanitation, & Hygiene Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is inviting innovators to send letters of inquiry for round 3 of the Reinvent The Toilet Challenge.
Successful applicants will receive grants to design, prototype and test on-site, self-contained sanitation modules for individual families or neighbourhoods. Self-contained means no connections to piped water, sewerage or energy (electricity/gas) utility services. with Capital and operational costs should not exceed US$ 0.05/user/day. Designs should be able to deal with sanitary products like paper, cloth, sand, and other personal hygiene products and chemicals.
There is a two-step application process:
- submission of a Letter of Inquiry (LOI) in the form of a 5 page concept note by 8 November 2012, 11:00pm PST
- eligible applicants will be requested to submit a full proposal
For the full call, submission guidelines and online application go to:
Bill Gates with His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange (left) at the Reinvent the Toilet Fair in Seattle on August 14, 2012. Photo: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has announced a second round of Reinvent the Toilet Challenge grants totaling nearly US$ 3.4 million. The announcement took place on 14 August during the Reinvent the Toilet Fair in Seattle, USA (see also the earlier post Winners of the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge).
Cranfield University This nearly US$ 810,000 grant will help develop a prototype toilet that removes water from human waste and vaporizes it using a hand-operated vacuum pump and a unique membrane system. The remaining solids are turned into fuel that can also be used as fertilizer. The water vapor is condensed and can be used for washing, or irrigation. Read Cranfield University’s press release.
Contact: Fiona Siebrits/ +44 (0) 1234 758040 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Eram Scientific Solutions Private Limited A grant of more than US$ 450,000 will make public toilets more accessible to the urban poor via the eco-friendly and hygienic “eToilet.” Read earlier posts about Eram’s E-Toilet Delight here and here.
Contact: Manohar Varghese / +91 9747060700 / email@example.com
RTI International This US$ 1.3 million grant will fund the development of a self-contained toilet system that disinfects liquid waste and turns solid waste into fuel or electricity through a revolutionary new biomass energy conversion unit. For more info read RT’I’s press release
Contact: Lisa Bistreich-Wolfe / +1 919.316.3596 / firstname.lastname@example.org
University of Colorado Boulder A nearly US$ 780,000 grant will help develop a solar toilet that uses concentrated sunlight, directed and focused with a solar dish and concentrator, to disinfect liquid-solid waste and produce biological charcoal (biochar) that can be used as a replacement for wood charcoal or chemical fertilizers. Read the University’s press release.
Contact: Karl Linden / +1 303 302 0188/ Carol Rowe / +1 303 492 7426 / Carol.Rowe@colorado.edu
Source: Gates Foundation, 14 Aug 2012
A video demonstrates the working of the prototype of the solar-powered toilet that won the first prize of US$ 100,000 in the Reinventing the Toilet Challenge issued by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The Solar-Powered Self-contained Human Waste Water Treatment System was developed by Prof. Michael Hoffmann‘s research group at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).
In 2011 the Caltech team was awarded a US$ 400,000 grant to create a toilet that can safely dispose of human waste and reuse water for just five US dollar cents per user per day.
Solar energy powers an electrochemical reactor, which converts human waste into fertiliser and hydrogen, which is stored in hydrogen fuel cells as energy. The treated water can be reused to flush the toilet or for irrigation.
The toilet, which could cost US$ 1,000 or more per unit according to the Seattle Times, is still a prototype and would need to be adapted before it can be launched commercially.
Source: Marcus Woo, Caltech, 15 Aug 2012 ; Theodoric Meyer, Seattle Times, 14 Aug 2012