May 2, 2014 – WASHplus Weekly: Focus on Sanitation

Issue 144 | May 2, 2014 | Focus on Sanitation

This issue features some of the most recent reports, blog posts, and videos on fecal sludge management, community-led total sanitation, sanitation marketing and other sanitation topics. Included are a 2014 UNICEF evaluation of its Community Approaches to Total Sanitation, updated statistics and country reports from the Joint Monitoring Programme, videos from the Toilet Fair in India, and other resources.


Faecal Sludge Management Conference (FSM3), Jan 18-22, 2015, Hanoi, Vietnam, Call for Papers and Workshops(Link)
FSM3 will share research and experience and build upon practical developments since the last FSM2 Conference, which was held in Durban, South Africa, in October 2012. Some of the themes include: FSM as an enterprise—commercial viability, financing arrangements, and cost recovery—desludging, collection, and transportation; FS characterization and technologies; and pit emptying operations and maintenance.


2014 Updates from the UNICEF/WHO Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP) for Water Supply and Sanitation. UNICEF; WHO. (Link)
The latest JMP estimates are now available and include 2014 country files, the latest statistical table, and a 2014 snapshot. washplusweekly

Anaerobic Digestion of Biowaste in Developing Countries: Practical Information and Case Studies, 2014. Y Vögeli, Eawag—Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology. (Link)
This book aims to compile existing and recently generated knowledge on issues of anaerobic digestion of organic solid waste at small and medium-scale with special consideration of low- and middle-income country conditions. The book is divided into two parts: Part 1 focuses on practical information related to anaerobic digestion and biogas production, and Part 2 presents selected case studies from around the world.

Downstream of the Toilet: Transforming Poo into Profit, 2013. WASHplus. (Link)
WASHplus engaged the NGO Practica to design and pilot a private-sector service delivery model to sustainably manage fecal sludge generated in Ambositra, Madagascar, using low-cost decentralized technologies. Working closely with the commune authorities, the project selected and trained a local entrepreneur, developed a sludge burial site, experimented with a range of manual extraction methods and tools, and engaged in a social marketing campaign to promote the service.

Evaluation of the WASH Sector Strategy “Community Approaches to Total Sanitation” (CATS): Final Evaluation Report, 2014. UNICEF. (Link)
In the context of the recent evolution of the sanitation sector, CATS can be seen in two ways: as a move from technically based supply-driven approaches toward behavior change, demand-driven approaches, and also as a recognition that a new social norm around ending open defecation is a key issue to be addressed because of its impacts on and linkages with other sectors (health, education, etc.). CATS successfully contributed to shifting the sanitation sector toward demand-driven rather than directly subsidized approaches. The evaluation shows that CATS has given a new momentum to rural sanitation in the more than 50 countries supported by UNICEF. This new momentum has translated into a change in how rural communities regard sanitation, invest in it, commit to new behaviors around ending open defecation—and eventually improve their living conditions.

A Gender-Inclusive Approach in Practice: Communal Sanitation, 2014. Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor. (Link)

Women and girls suffer disproportionately from the effects of poor sanitation and lack of access to clean water. Through the example of establishing communal sanitation facilities in Maputo (Mozambique) and Naivasha (Kenya), this Practice Note illustrates how WASH service provision can be approached in a way that fosters inclusion, promotes equality, and places the concerns of women and girls at the center of program planning and implementation.

Making Sanitation Marketing Work: The Bangladesh Story, 2014. Water and Sanitation Program. (Link)
Sanitation marketing has thus far resulted in the following outcomes: increased motivation in rural communities to move up the sanitation ladder; a new breed of entrepreneurs skilled in production and marketing; willingness among microfinance institutions to invest in the sanitation sector, facilitating credit to entrepreneurs; and availability of multiple sanitary products in the rural market, with costs ranging from US $20 to US $250.

On-farm Treatment Options for Wastewater, Greywater and Fecal Sludge with Special Reference to West Africa, 2014. B Keraita. (Link)
This paper shows that “small-scale” and “low cost” are not necessarily roadblocks for setting up effective farm-based treatment systems. A larger challenge is to understand how best to facilitate any behavior change that requires farmers to adjust their farming practices.

Sewerage or Fecal Sludge Management? Sometimes Both: “Gradual Sewering” in Nairobi, 2014. Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor. (WSUP) (Link)
Sewer mains criss-cross Nairobi’s super-slum Kibera. So why not simply connect latrines to the sewer? Unfortunately it’s not so simple for various reasons, including high costs. In partnership with Nairobi Water, WSUP has been developing a “gradual sewering” approach that aims to bridge the gap between onsite and sewered sanitation. This note looks at experience to date.


Investigating Key Factors Affecting the Adoption of Urine Diverting Toilets (UDTs) in Peri-Urban Areas. R Chunga, SHARE. (Blog post)
Richard Chunga is investigating key factors affecting the adoption of urine diverting toilets in peri-urban areas in Blantyre and Lilongwe City in Malawi. He was motivated to carry out this investigation because he observed through his work with WaterAid and Water for People (two key WASH players in peri-urban areas in Malawi) that the adoption of UDTs is slow in spite of the multiple benefits that the technology offers landlords in peri-urban areas.

There’s No Business Like Shit BusinessDefeatDD Blog, Apr 2014. J Sauer, Water for People. (Link)
In 2010 Water For People set out to support small scale entrepreneurs in Blantyre, Malawi. One of these was a man named Matthias John. Initially Matthias was not alone. Water For People identified 12 potential pit emptying business people, but one by one they found the business too hard and not for them. This blog highlights the depth of support required to keep an entrepreneur like Matthias in the sludge removal business.

Why Should Governments Spend on Sanitation? The World Bank Blog, Apr 2014. S Devarajan. (Link)
So how should governments decide what to spend on? They should spend on those things that the private sector will not spend on, or will not spend enough on. The classic example is an externality—where the benefits or costs occur to people other than the person undertaking the action (such as when an upstream firm pollutes downstream villages). Society is better off if government steps in and taxes the externality provider. Sanitation, or its converse, open defecation, is a negative externality. People who defecate in the open not only harm their own children, but other people’s children. Their incentive to invest in sanitation is less than the costs.


Reinvent the Toilet Fair India: Interviews and Demonstrations of Exhibits in Delhi, India (March 21–22, 2014). Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA). (Link to videos)
The 39 videos in this playlist include interviews about 17 Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded sanitation research projects. For most of the projects, the footage is split into two separate video clips: one is a pure interview to get the overall project “story” and the other one is a technical tour of the exhibit.

Webinars with Sanitation Grantees of the BMGF Hosted by SEI and SuSanA.Sustainable Sanitation Alliance (SuSanA). (Link to videos)
The 13 videos in this playlist show recordings of webinars hosted by the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) and SuSanA with the aim of giving increased exposure to the BMGF research grants.

WASHplus Weeklies will highlight topics such as Urban WASH, Indoor Air Pollution, Innovation, Household Water Treatment and Storage, Hand Washing, Integration, and more. If you would like to feature your organization’s materials in upcoming issues, please send them to Dan Campbell, WASHplus Knowledge Resources Specialist,

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