Human fecal and pathogen exposure pathways in rural Indian villages and the effect of increased latrine coverage

Human fecal and pathogen exposure pathways in rural Indian villages and the effect of increased latrine coverageWater Research, Volume 100, 1 September 2016, Pages 232–244.

Authors: Mitsunori Odagiri, Alexander Schriewer, et al.

Highlights

  • Application of Bacteroidales MST to evaluate improved sanitation impacts
  • Widespread human and animal fecal contamination detected in homes.
  • Pathogens detected in drinking sources associated with subsequent child diarrhea.
  • Public ponds used domestically were heavily contaminated with multiple pathogens.
  • No decrease in human fecal or pathogen contamination from increased latrine coverage.

In conclusion, the study demonstrates that

  • (1) improved sanitation alone may be insufficient and further interventions needed in the domestic domain to reduce widespread human and animal fecal contamination observed in homes,
  • (2) pathogens detected in tubewells indicate these sources are microbiologically unsafe for drinking and were associated with child diarrhea,
  • (3) domestic use of ponds heavily contaminated with multiple pathogens presents an under-recognized health risk, and
  • (4) a 27 percentage point increase in improved sanitation access at village-level did not reduce detectable human fecal and pathogen contamination in this setting.

 

What are the most significant trends in the WASH sector for 2016 – 2025?

What are the most significant trends in the WASH sector for 2016 – 2025?

Authors: Rognerud, I., Fonseca, C., Kerk, A. van der, Moriarty, P. IRC

2016 is a special year for the water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) and “Big Water” sectors: it marks the start of the 15-year period for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It is also an important year for IRC, as it is the final year of our current five-year business plan.

To develop a new strategy for IRC centred on the Sustainable Development Goals, we have analysed global and regional trends for 2016–2025. In this IRC Trends Analysis we seek to anticipate and explain 11 uncertain trends in the WASH sector, the wider development world and specifically, Dutch development assistance policy.

The report is written from the perspective of IRC’s vision of universal access to WASH services and its mission as an international think-and-do tank. It provides background for the development of IRC’s strategy. Although it is primarily an internal document, we are sharing it because many of the trends we identify are relevant to other sector stakeholders.

We have identified 11 uncertain trends that are relevant for IRC’s work:

  • improving human development and economic growth
  • rapid growth in migration and urbanisation
  • worsening water scarcity
  • complex governance trends
  • a changing global aid landscape
  • the rise of domestic resource mobilisation for development
  • expansion of information and communications technology
  • persistent gaps in wash services despite better access overall
  • continued inadequacy and unsustainability of wash finance
  • evolving approaches to wash service provision
  • altered priorities in Dutch development cooperation policy

 

Sanitation in Bangladesh: Revolution, Evolution, and New Challenges

Sanitation in Bangladesh: Revolution, Evolution, and New Challenges, 2016. CLTS Knowledge Hub Learning Paper.

Author: Dr Suzanne Hanchett.

Our 2015 discussions with people at all levels of Bangladesh society reveal both pride in sanitation achievements and concern about meeting future challenges. A combination of approaches – subsidies, non-subsidies, micro-credit, sanitation market improvements, programming at various scales, motivating of individuals and groups – has resulted in a majority of households’ using latrines rather than defecating openly.

Policy documents have created frameworks to guide activities in diverse areas. Issues such as quality, faecal sludge removal, and appropriate subsidies for very poor households remain, however. Hard-to-reach geographical areas lag behind the rest of the country. As Professor Mujibur Rahman’s 2009 overview pointed out, failing to address these challenges will threaten the sustainability of achievements.

Unique characteristics of the Bangladesh sanitation situation include the focus on its local government institution (the union), its long history of NGO-sponsored community mobilisation, and its high population density. Donor involvement has been a regular feature of the sanitation scene for more than three decades. It is a relatively small country, the size of only one of India’s states. All of these special conditions and characteristics have supported its achievements to date.

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The Guardian – Can mapping faecal flows cut the crap in developing cities?

Can mapping faecal flows cut the crap in developing cities? | Source: The Guardian, June 16, 2016 |

Human waste often ends up in drains, rivers, fields and on beaches, but fast growing cities can use data grabs to improve their sanitation conditions

Rapid urbanisation in many parts of the developing world is putting an increasing strain on the ability of cities to deliver critical services such as water and sanitation. More than half of the world’s population – 54% – live in urban areas and some 700 million of them do not use an improved sanitation facility, where human waste is separated from human contact.

irc

Children fish on a river bank in one of downtown Jakarta’s slum areas next to public toilets. Photograph: Bay Ismoyo/AFP/Getty Images

But even where there are such facilities, this does not necessarily translate into environmentally safe practices. More than two billion people in urban areas use toilets connected to septic tanks or latrine pits that are not safely emptied or that discharge raw sewage into open drains or surface waters. With another 2.5 billion people expected to live in cities by 2050, authorities urgently need to keep up with the growing urban population, ensure equitable access to improved sanitation, and safeguard the appropriate and environmentally-safe management of human waste.

Believe it or not, mapping the journey of faecal waste is an important part of the solution. IRC’s new sanitation assessment tool offers a simple representation of the volumes of sludge safely (and unsafely) dealt with at each stage of the sanitation chain, allowing city planners to determine where the biggest losses are and where to focus their (often limited) budgets.

Although tools to assess faecal sludge management (FSM) do already exist, they are either not able to include qualitative information or the scorecards they provide do not give adequate explanations for a bad score, nor do they provide actual volumes, which makes it difficult to translate the results into action. IRC’s tool, however, analyses the availability and enforcement of policy and legislation, and the presence of and adherence to health and safety through specific scorecards.

Read the complete article.

Approaches to Capital Financing and Cost Recovery in Sewerage Schemes Implemented in India: Lessons Learned and Approaches for Future Schemes

Approaches to Capital Financing and Cost Recovery in Sewerage Schemes Implemented in India: Lessons Learned and Approaches for Future Schemes, 2016. Water and Sanitation Program.

This report aims to highlight some of the successful financial management practices adopted by Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) in India when implementing sewerage schemes. The findings are presented in two parts – the first part of the report discusses the approach adopted for capital financing of sewerage schemes in the state of Tamil Nadu, and the second part presents the findings from a review of the operational expenditure and revenue generation of various ULBs across the country.

The aim of the report is to share successful capital financing and cost recovery practices adopted by ULBs in India and enable improvement in provisioning of sewerage systems (only where feasible and economically viable, typically only in larger towns with a population greater than 50,000) and ensure availability of sufficient funds for proper Operation and Maintenance (O&M) of the schemes implemented.

 

Community Slum Sanitation in India A Practitioner’s Guide

Community Slum Sanitation in India: A Practitioner’s Guide, 2016. Water and Sanitation Program.

Based on the experience of slum sanitation initiatives implemented in a number of urban centers in India, over the last decades, this Guide draws out the critical drivers that appear to explain some facets of successful community slum sanitation initiatives.

Initiatives from the cities of Ahmedabad, Pune, Mumbai, Bhopal, Trichy, and Kalyani are used as the examples to learn from (based on convenience and easy availability of information).

A set of generic steps are identified and described thereafter for the preparatory, planning, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation stages of community sanitation initiatives.

Teachers and Sanitation Promotion: An Assessment of Community Led Total Sanitation in Ethiopia

Teachers and Sanitation Promotion: An Assessment of Community Led Total Sanitation in Ethiopia. Env Sci Tech, May 2016.

Authors: Jonny Crocker, Abiyot Geremew, Fisseha Atalie, Messele Yetie, and Jamie Bartram

Community-led total sanitation (CLTS) is a participatory approach to addressing open defecation that has demonstrated success in previous studies, yet there is no research on how implementation arrangements and context change effectiveness. We used a quasi-experimental study design to compare two interventions in Ethiopia: conventional CLTS in which health workers and local leaders provided facilitation and an alternative approach in which teachers provided facilitation.

In 2012, Plan International Ethiopia trained teachers from 111 villages and health workers and leaders from 54 villages in CLTS facilitation. The trained facilitators then implemented CLTS in their respective villages
for a year. Latrine ownership, use, and quality were measured with household surveys.

Differences between interventions were explored using surveys and interviews. The decrease in open defecation associated with teacher-facilitated CLTS was 8.2 percentage points smaller than for conventional CLTS (p = 0.048). Teachers had competing responsibilities and initially lacked support from local leaders, which may have lessened their success.

Teachers may be more appropriate for a supporting rather than leading role in sanitation promotion because they did demonstrate ability and engagement. Open defecation decreased by 15.3 percentage points overall but did not change where baseline open defecation was below 30%.

Ownership of a latrine with stable flooring increased by 8.7 percentage points overall. Improved latrine ownership did not change during the intervention. CLTS is most appropriate where open defecation is high because there were no significant changes in sanitation practices or latrine upgrades where baseline open defecation was low