Tag Archives: urban sanitation

Three things that make SaniPath special

Three things that make SaniPath special | Source: SaniPath blog, April 21 2016 |

The SaniPath team has created an exposure assessment tool to be used in urban low-resource areas with poor sanitation. It stands out as a resource for its accessibility, easy to understand results, and potential to influence policy making. sanipath

1. THE SANIPATH TOOL IS EASY TO USE AND UNDERSTAND
The tool was designed with the goal that it would be able to be used independently by a variety of organizations interested in improving sanitation. It comes with a detailed manual describing the steps of the data collection and the analyses process than can be understood by anyone with a basic scientific background. Minimum requirements for use of the tool include:

  • A funding source (ex: local government or international organization)
  • A lab with the ability to detect E. coli and technicians to carry out the procedures in a sterile environment
  • A team with experience conducting surveys
  • A local group to assist with data collection and distribution

Read the complete article.

Sustainable Solutions for Sanitation Challenges in Informal Settlements of Kigali, Rwanda

Sustainable Solutions for Sanitation Challenges in Informal Settlements of Kigali, Rwanda, 2015. Institute of Policy Analysis and Research – Rwanda.

Dwellers of informal settlements are inclined over time to reject traditional pit latrines for alternative low-cost options that are more sustainable, such as innovative decentralized sanitation and reuse (DeSaR) and water serving sanitation technologies. This is important because these options can play a part in reduction of over exploitation of natural water sources, which continue to be scarce, as a result of population pressure in the country.

DeSaR technologies are also appropriate in informal settlements of Kigali because they occupy less space, do not require emptying by vacuum tankers, pre treatment/composting, provides opportunity for nutrients re-cycling which is environmentally sustainable and, if well maintained, can have minimal harmful effects.

A Future Re-imagined: Urban Sanitation In India (Video)

Published on Mar 3, 2016
It’s not just about toilets. If we want to improve the quality of life in India, we’ve got to start paying attention to the sanitation value chain. Dasra.org

Access to Improved Sanitation in Informal Settlements: The Case of Dar es Salaam City, Tanzania

Access to Improved Sanitation in Informal Settlements: The Case of Dar es Salaam City, TanzaniaCurrent Urban Studies, Mar. 2016.

Authors: Samson Elisha Kasala, Marco Mathias Burra, Tumpale Sakijege Mwankenja

Based on the current study, this paper attempts to examine how and the extent to which residents in these informal settlements get access to improved sanitation. The paper also draws lessons to inform the way forward.

The findings show that community based initiatives, partnerships and law enforcement are instrumental in improving access to sanitation in informal settlements.

Improving health in cities through systems approaches for urban water management

Improving health in cities through systems approaches for urban water management. Env Health, Mar. 2016.

Authors: L. C. Rietveld, J. G. Siri, et al.

As human populations become more and more urban, decision-makers at all levels face new challenges related to both the scale of service provision and the increasing complexity of cities and the networks that connect them. These challenges may take on unique aspects in cities with different cultures, political and institutional frameworks, and at different levels of development, but they frequently have in common an origin in the interaction of human and environmental systems and the feedback relationships that govern their dynamic evolution.

Accordingly, systems approaches are becoming recognized as critical to understanding and addressing such complex problems, including those related to human health and wellbeing. Management of water resources in and for cities is one area where such approaches hold real promise.

Urban sanitation: a quest for the silver bullet

2015 and the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are behind us. The new global goals for sustainable development are expected to inspire and create a new determination for all of us. What has IRC learned during 2015 and how are we moving ahead in 2016? 

Blog by Erick Baetings, Senior sanitation specialist, IRC

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Haiphong City, Viet Nam. Photo: Erick Baetings, IRC

Although a lot has been achieved the world has fallen short on the MDG sanitation target, leaving 2.4 billion people without access to improved sanitation facilities. Globally, it is estimated that 82 per cent of the urban population now use improved sanitation facilities, compared with 51 per cent of the rural population.

What is the case for urban sanitation?

Urban growth

Rapid urbanisation in many parts of the developing world is putting increasing strain on the ability of municipalities to deliver critical services, such as water and sanitation. More than half the world’s population (54 per cent) live in urban areas. Urbanisation combined with the overall growth of the world’s population is projected to add another 2.5 billion people to the urban populations by 2050, with close to 90 percent of the increase concentrated in Asia and Africa. As a result, many developing countries will face numerous challenges in meeting the needs of their growing urban populations. In a number of regions such as sub-Saharan Africa, population growth has already outpaced gains in sanitation coverage in urban areas.

Inclusion and equality

Inclusive and equitable access to improved sanitation facilities is still far away. Inequalities between richest and poorest 20 per cent of the population are found in all regions but may vary according to the type and level of service. Inequalities hinder efforts to reduce poverty and to stimulate economic growth, resulting in a negative impact on society as a whole. Therefore, ideally, more should be done for the poor than the rich, allowing the gap to narrow and ultimately disappear over time.

Moving beyond toilets and containment

Access to improved sanitation facilities does not necessarily translate into environmentally safe practices as even appropriately captured human waste is often improperly stored, transported, or disposed. To date, global monitoring has focused primarily on the containment of human excreta, where a sanitation facility is considered to be improved if it hygienically separates human excreta from human contact. This is now considered to be grossly inadequate as it does not address the subsequent management of faecal waste along the entire sanitation service chain, from containment through emptying, transport, treatment, and reuse or disposal. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) states that over 2 billion people in urban areas use toilets connected to onsite septic tanks or latrine pits that are not safely emptied or that discharge raw sewage into open drains or surface waters.

The challenge is to keep up with the growing urban population, to ensure equitable access to improved sanitation services, and to address the entire sanitation service chain.

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IIED – Building towards a future in which urban sanitation “leaves no one behind”

Building towards a future in which urban sanitation “leaves no one behind,” 2015. Diana Mitlin, IIED.

Full text

Plans to improve access to sanitation in towns and cities of the global South are hampered by multiple challenges. One is a lack of reliable information. In particular, global and national-level data often diverge from data on particular settlements, collected by inhabitants of those settlements themselves. Local data highlight the inadequacy of living conditions – and in so doing evidence the difficulties in securing improvements. Another challenge lies in the setting of standards around acceptable sanitation. At a global level, for instance, shared sanitation is not considered part of “improved” sanitation. Yet the reality for many low-income urban populations is that communal sanitation can be hygienic, cost-effective and locally acceptable.

The difficulties in reaching a consensus around data and standards point to the importance of diverse approaches to increasing and improving sanitation, including considering both on-site and off-site solutions.

They also highlight how crucial it is for the planning and implementation of all such solutions to be inclusive of those often missing from global debates, such as the low-income urban groups that cannot afford substantial sanitation spending. Financial and political commitments, drawing on the circumstances and approaches articulated by low-income groups themselves, will be key to securing a future in which everyone has access to the sanitation they need.