Tag Archives: faecal sludge management

The new economy of excrement. Nature, September 13, 2017

The new economy of excrement. Nature, September 13, 2017

Entrepreneurs are finding profits turning human waste into fertiliser, fuel and even food.

On the outskirts of Kigali, Rwanda, septic trucks full of human excrement bump and slosh their way up orange dirt roads to their final destination: the Nduba landfill. Until recently, the trucks would spill their contents into giant open pits.

Will Swanson for Nature Semi-dried sludge on its way to becoming fuel at the Pivot plant in Rwanda

Will Swanson for Nature. Semi-dried sludge on its way to becoming fuel at the Pivot plant in Rwanda.

But since 2015, workers in green jumpsuits have greeted them outside a row of sheds and plastic-roofed greenhouses, ready to process the faecal sludge into a dry, powdery fuel.

The facility is called Pivot, and its founder is Ashley Muspratt, a sanitation engineer who lived in Ghana, Kenya and Rwanda for more than seven years before moving back to the United States last year. Muspratt insists that Pivot is not a treatment plant.

It’s a business. Its product powers local industries such as cement and brick plants. “I describe us as dual sanitation and renewable-fuel company,” Muspratt says. “Our model really is to build factories.”

Muspratt is part of a growing band of entrepreneurs trying to address one of the biggest challenges in public health — poor sanitation — and to turn a profit doing it. According to a report published by the World Health Organization and United Nations children’s charity Unicef in July, 2.8 billion people — 38% of the world’s population — have no access to sewers and deposit their waste in tanks and pit latrines (see ‘Sanitation across nations’).

Read the complete article.

How Public Private Partnerships are Making a Crappy Market Safe Across Bangladesh

How Public Private Partnerships are Making a Crappy Market Safe Across Bangladesh. August 30, 2017. By Sarah Miers – Skoll Foundation, By Lucien Chan – Skoll Foundation.

In Bangladesh, nearly half of 55 million urban residents lack the sanitation infrastructure to properly process human waste. The result: massive amounts of raw waste is unsafely dumped, fouling the environment and posing major public health risks. There’s an urgent need to find safe and affordable ways for waste to be collected and treated. dhaka

Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor (WSUP) works alongside local providers, enabling them to develop their own services, build infrastructure, and attract the funding needed to reach low-income communities. Since its inception in 2005, WSUP has helped nearly 14 million people access clean water and sanitation services across six countries. Earlier this summer, we spent a week investigating WSUP’s SWEEP program, a public-private partnership (PPP) for fecal sludge management (FSM), which resulted in a $2 million investment from the Skoll Foundation to expand across 4 cities and serve 6.8 million people by 2021.

Dhaka is the only city in the country with any sewage infrastructure (just 20 percent coverage), and nearly all non-sewered households rely on manual sweepers–workers who remove the waste at high risk and with little equipment–to empty their on-site pit latrines or septic tanks. More hygienic, mechanical emptying options are limited. Due to failures across the sanitation value chain (containment, emptying, transport, and treatment), nearly all waste is not effectively treated or safely disposed, most often being dumped directly into storm water drains or the environment.

Read the complete article.

Tender: Sanitation solutions for underserved communities in Jordan

The project, initiated by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), focuses on rethinking sanitation systems, by improving existing Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTP) and exploring the development of small scale Waste Water Treatment (WWT) and Faecal Sludge Treatment (FST) solutions. The goal of these improvements and developments is to increase WWT efficiency and sanitation coverage, and turn waste streams into physical and financial resource streams by ensuring and promoting safe reuse of the treated wastewater and faecal sludge. The focus is on Jordanian host communities as a whole, with a particular attention to be paid to unserved, vulnerable communities, as they are more and more impacted by the lack of adequate sanitation systems. The project will be subdivided into two distinct phases – the inception phase and the main phase.

Project ID 157868|Notice no. 975947

Deadline for submission of the complete bid: 28 August 2017

View the full notice at:
www.simap.ch/shabforms/COMMON/search/searchresult.jsf

Starting May 1 – MOOC on Introduction to Faecal Sludge Management

Published on Mar 21, 2017

The FSM-MOOC will be launched on May 1 on Coursera. Please sign up for the course here: https://www.coursera.org/learn/faecal…. In May, all videos of the course will also be available on this YouTube-channel.

A financially viable and safe solution for managing human waste

Collecting small monthly payments will help waste collectors build their business.

Bangladesh - pit latrine empytiers

Pit latrine workers in Bangladesh collecting and transporting human waste to a site where it is processed into fertiliser. Image: Neil Palmer (IWMI). Credit: University of Leeds

Spreading the cost of emptying pit latrines over a series of monthly payments could make it more affordable for poor households and help kick start the safe reuse of faecal sludge as fertiliser and biogas. This is the conclusion of a willingness-to-pay study carried out in a rural sub-district of Bangladesh covered by the BRAC WASH Programme II.

The study has already caught the attention of policymakers, and influenced the development of Bangladesh’s first regulatory framework for faecal sludge management. Some of the authors are members of the Bangladesh National Committee for Fecal Sludge Management.

Currently, households struggle to pay a lump sum of US$13 every three to four years to empty their pit latrines. This is approximately 14% of their monthly income. Instead, the study found they could pay small monthly payments of as little as US$ 0.31 per month, comparable to what they spend each month on a mobile phone service. These up-front payments help waste collectors to invest in the development of their service. Nevertheless, a government subsidy would still be needed to cover the full cost of safe removal and transport of faecal sludge.

As mentioned above, there is potential for waste collectors to generate extra revenue by converting faecal waste into fertiliser and biogas. The profitability of these waste by-products, however, can be effected by existing subsidies for chemical fertilisers and conventional fuels. Another factor that can reduce profitability is the low energy or calorific value of human waste compared to other organic wastes. A companion study carried out as part of the BRAC WASH Programme II tested solutions to increase the calorific value by co-processing human waste with other agricultural wastes.

The willingness-to-pay study is an output of the Value at the end of the Sanitation Value Chain (VeSV) research project, lead by the University of Leeds. VeSV was one of six action research projects funded by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands (Bangladesh) through IRC. Additional funding was provided by the CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems.

For more information read “Spreading the cost to transform sanitation“, published by the University of Leed’s School of Civil Engineering, 22 March 2017.

Citation: Balasubramanya S, et al. (2017) Towards sustainable sanitation management : establishing the costs and willingness to pay for emptying and transporting sludge in rural districts with high rates of access to latrines. PLoS ONE 12(3): e0171735. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0171735

This news item was originally published on the IRC website, 27 March 2017.

Ushering a new era in sanitation value chain management in India

Report of a WASH Dialogue on faecal sludge and septage management.

By Anupama Sahay

Cambodia faecal sudge management-crop

Faecal sludge management in Cambodia. Photo: Dany Dourng

Is Faecal Sludge and Septage Management (FSSM) an effective and long-term solution in the sanitation value chain? That was the question that Indian sanitation experts reflected on in Jaipur, the state capital of Rajasthan, at a multi-stakeholder dialogue on ‘FSSM Matters: Looking Forward’ on 10 January 2017. The dialogue was the second of the “Insights” series launched last year by the India Sanitation Coalition (ISC), IRC and TARU Leading Edge.

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Information on fecal sludge management

4th International Faecal Sludge Management Conference (FSM4), February 19-23, Chennai, India. FSM4 will focus on innovative and practical solutions that can be scaled up, including three tracks: research, case studies, and industry and exhibition.

Sanitation Service Delivery (SSD) Program – Ghana, Ivory Coast and BeninSustainable Sanitation Alliance, November 2016. SSD is a USAID/West Africa urban sanitation project implemented in Cote d’Ivoire, Benin, and Ghana. The project aims to improve sanitation outcomes through developing and testing scalable, market-based models that contribute to structural change within the region’s sanitation sector. Several posts to this forum discuss the SSD program and provide links to SSD’s reports and webinars.

Fecal Sludge Management ToolsThe World Bank, June 2016. The World Bank has developed some tools to diagnose fecal sludge management (FSM) status and to guide decisionmaking. These tools do not provide predefined solutions, as the many variables and stakeholders involved demand interventions that are specific to each city and should be seen within the context of integrated urban water management.

Faecal Waste Flow CalculatorIRC WASH, 2016. The tool is developed to determine fecal waste volumes along the entire service chain, allowing city planners, service authorities, or any other users to determine where the biggest losses are and where interventions should be targeted. Less easily quantifiable issues such as the existence of policies and legislation, availability and transparency of plans and budgets, and presence and adherence to environmental and safety standards are captured with the use of score cards.

Fecal Sludge Management in MadagascarWASHplus, March 2016. This video discusses how USAID’s WASHplus project engaged the international NGO Practica to design and pilot a private-sector service delivery model to sustainably manage fecal sludge generated in the peri-urban area of Ambositra using low-cost decentralized technologies.

2016 WEDC Conference Presentations on Fecal Sludge ManagementSanitation Updates, August 2016. This post has links to each of the eight WEDC 2016 conference presentations on fecal sludge management, topics include analysis of fecal sludge collection efficiency and overcoming capacity gaps in fecal sludge management through education and training.

Smaller is Better when Investing in Fecal Sludge Management in AsiaAsian Development Blog, August 2016. This article discusses small wastewater projects that differ from the bank’s traditional approach of focusing on developing bigger centralized systems that involve large, extensive wastewater networks and infrastructure.

Is There Fecal Sludge on Your Salad? IWA Network, January 2017. This article discusses the Sanitation Safety Planning tool that helps optimize the reuse of wastewater, grey water, and excreta.

SFD toolboxSustainable Sanitation Alliance, January 2017. An excreta flow diagram (also often described as shit flow diagram, SFD) is a tool to readily understand and communicate visualizing how excreta physically flows through a city or town.

Assessing Public Health Risks from Unsafe Fecal Sludge Management in Poor Urban Neighborhoods: What Does SaniPath Tell Us about Exposure to Fecal Contamination in 12 Neighborhoods in 3 Cities? Sanipath, August 2016. This presentation compares the latest results of the SaniPath Study from three different study sites: Accra, Ghana; Vellore, India; and Maputo, Mozambique, and discusses the reliability of the SaniPath Tool data.