SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Thu, 24 Jul 2014 12:59:39 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: A better name for manual emptiers in the UBSUP programme (in Kenya) - by: Doreen
Thank you so much for all the feedback! We have decided to call the emptiers the Sanitation team We found this to be a holistic name that covers all the work that they will do.

I am now finalising the concept on how we shall integrate the sanitation team within the UBSUP programme and I am excited to finish it quickly so that I can share it with all of you. If you like to learn a little bit about the current situation on manual emptiers, please follow the link below:

NB: Thanks Hans for that video. That was shot last year in Nairobi and I had the opportunity to watch it online too as we do not get the programme Quarks and Co. here in Kenya.

If you would like more information on UBSUP, please check out the post below:

Best regards,

Faecal sludge management Thu, 24 Jul 2014 12:32:21 +0000
Re: Inter-sectoral collaboration - by: Sowmya
I had posted the above message originally in the category of Working Group 1 (Capacity Development), because it relates to enhancing our capacity to collaborate across sectors for reaching solutions and impact faster. Elisabeth has now opened a new thread for this topic, which I think is better because we should put our focus on the sector first (policy, evidence, program implementation) as it helps us develop an overarching perspective & goals for action.

I feel very passionate about increasing inter-sectoral cooperation and was particularly inspired into writing about it by the discussions we have had on gender-based violence (please see URL). It is a remarkable example of how experts in two sectors got together and openly shared their views and expertise resulting in a wonderful learning experience for everyone. The discussion was spontaneous, spirited, enthusiastic and open and I think everyone gained new insights and knowledge – the outcome being an enriching experience for everyone and a consensus about how strongly we feel about the issue and the need to address it properly.

Starting from that point, I have been trying to think about how we can continue to have such great discussions and create a platform / process for building it into something more impactful for achieving sanitation and other goals.

I have written a draft working document (please see the attachment in the above post). Please find below the main points (for faster reading):

Problem definition: (a) Sanitation has the largest performance gap on the MDGs and (b) irrespective of geography, we are far from achieving the highest goal of sanitation: safe, zero-emission chain of interface, collection, transport, treatment and use of human excreta.

Why is it urgent to accelerate access to sanitation: With hardly six months left to achieve MDGs, this is a chance to powerfully reinvent our sanitation sector and prove ourselves to be at the forefront of achieving our highest goals. For me, personally, the urgency comes from both positive (I am excited about actually doing something really meaningful for people and it is my venture as well) and negative (I do not want to read of those horrific incidents anymore and would like to make them a faded memory).

What will it take: Sanitation has several dimensions in terms of design (technical, socio-political, etc) as well as impact (health, environment, agriculture, etc). Therefore, I believe that the best way to achieve our goals is through inter-sectoral collaboration. I come to this conclusion mainly because (a) it is critical to have deep insights and knowledge of all relevant dimensions, but it is almost impossible to independently gain such insights and knowledge in so many domains; and (b) the knowledge may already exist in other domains.

What can inter-sectoral collaboration help achieve: This can (a) help increase awareness and make different sanitation solutions more affordable and acceptable for end-users; and (b) contribute to the achievement of other important goals (like reducing gender based violence arising from lack of safe access to sanitation).

Some practical examples of what inter-sectoral collaboration can achieve: (a) Recognition of processed excreta as organic fertilizer, (b) recognition of ecological sanitation as eligible “clean technologies” in emissions trading, (c) inclusion of ecosan in green building certification and (d) Energy Star rating (similar to what is available for wastewater treatment plants).

Yesterday, Linda Strande had posted an article on the Forum (please see URL). The authors recommended taking an integrated perspective for WASH focusing on four aspects: (a) enabling environment, (b) economic opportunities and incentives, (c) technology beyond the toilet and (d) motivation and drivers of behaviour change. The examples given above are some of the possibilities where inter-sectoral collaboration could help provide economic opportunities and incentives without significant investment.

The more we engage with other sectors and vice versa,
the more we can develop collaboration opportunities.

Wonderful precedents in inter-sectoral collaboration: We have already seen a wonderful example in the new gender toolkit for sanitation (the toolkit can be accessed at this URL and related discussions in SuSanA at this URL) which brings together all gender-related aspects for emotionally and culturally sensitive design and implementation. My academic background is in health and management sciences. While I am thrilled to be working in sanitation, I know that there is much that I have to learn. The gender toolkit answered my questions, made me aware of several nuances and I have gained several insights. I am sure others would benefit from reading the gender toolkit as well.

Another lovely example is the recently published study (please see URL) that explored the integration of WASH and nutrition programming, identified barriers to and necessary steps for successful integration. A quote: “To achieve more effective integration, respondents highlighted the need for more holistic strategies that consider both sectors, improved coordination, donor support and funding, a stronger evidence base for integration, and leadership at all levels.”

A whole new world for us to explore: Similar to the gender toolkit, there are probably several ways to enhance the way we collaborate across sectors. Let us explore every possible avenue to increase inter-sectoral collaboration. The Stockholm Water Week could be a great opportunity. Chris Canaday had an excellent suggestion and I quote: “establishing ties with online forums of those other sectors, such that potentially there could be direct moderator-to-moderator transfer of important relevant messages and queries. I think this is a key feature for strengthening SuSanA, since questions come up that no one has answers for. Key alliances would include those with microbiologists, epidemiologists, agronomists, psychologists, marketers, engineers, material experts, etc.”

Questions to SuSanA Forum members:
  1. What do you think of my suggestions about inter-sectoral collaboration? What is the potential?
  2. What are the barriers? Any ideas regarding how to overcome these barriers?
  3. What are the concrete steps each of us can take?
  4. What do you think of my working document draft?
  5. If we refine this working document, how could we somehow “launch” it and make use of it as a rallying point?

I look forward to seeing your comments and suggestions.

Thanks and regards,

Upscaling, sanitation governance, institutional aspects, sanitation policies Thu, 24 Jul 2014 10:12:48 +0000
Re: Upgrade human waste to fuel gas with plasma-driven gasification & human centered design of toilet facility (TU Delft, The Netherlands and India), RTTC Round 2 - by: jansengerwin

Resource recovery from excreta or faecal sludge Thu, 24 Jul 2014 08:47:36 +0000
Re: Games for Urine Diversion Toilets - by: inajurga ]]> Training, education, WASH in schools Thu, 24 Jul 2014 08:17:26 +0000 Re: Games for Urine Diversion Toilets - by: inajurga
Thank you ! for the link as well for the compliments.

what a fun exhibition - would love to visit it!!!!
we also do have a shit-hat here in the office , and me have a golden one =)

strictly speaking, playing a "shithead" might not be the a good message, but what i do love is that one "dives" into the unknown sewer & wastewater system.]]>
Training, education, WASH in schools Thu, 24 Jul 2014 07:25:44 +0000
Re: New article: Why clean the toilet if others don't? Using a social dilemma approach to understand users of shared toilets (in urban slums) - by: christoph
thanks for posting. I rembember we had some conversation about
somewhere here in Sussana (Elisabeth do you remember?) and I found it sad that we did not have more input. At that time papers were in preparation. Are you able to share a little bit more of data?

Especially about the question number of useres would be interesting to learn more. Seems to be rolled out in
"Günther, I., Horst, A., Lüthi, C., Mosler, H.-J., Niwagaba, C. B. &
Tumwebaze, I. K. When is Shared Sanitation Improved
Sanitation? Research for policy 2. Eawag, Switzerland." (but certainly you know your publications )

Thank you

Behaviour change, psychology, user engagement Thu, 24 Jul 2014 07:02:21 +0000
Re: Non-plastic removable container for UDDT (for project in Southern India) - by: StewMartin
Not sure if this thread has gone dormant. But to answer your question, our first effort at local material-produced containers will be bamboo frame with woven split bamboo to make the basket. We think some can make themselves, others will have to barter or purchase (at low cost). Still working out the quantity of containers in a vault of the UDDT. Yes, they will eventually rot; but much less than the woven gedek, alternative material. We're looking into plastic woven bags; not yet sourced.]]>
Urine diversion systems (includes UDDT and UD flush toilet) Thu, 24 Jul 2014 04:55:33 +0000
Re: Games for Urine Diversion Toilets - by: CeciliaRodrigues
I hope you are doing fine! I am happy to hear that you're a featured user!

I came across this exhibition going on at the 'National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation', in Japan. I'm not sure if it was posted elsewhere here in the forum.

The pictures of the installation are quite nice and cute. It may serve as inspiration for games!

Training, education, WASH in schools Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:18:41 +0000
Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums (Stanford University, USA) - by: kcrussel It is always exciting to see threads that have been dormant still being useful. I’ll try and address each of the questions and comments in the order in which they were posted.

…mentioned that you were considering other treatment technologies and back-end products besides composting, such as the DEWATS and biogas. I am wondering how your research evolved in this regard. Would that be technically feasible considering that you are adopting UDDTs? I suppose you are using sawdust or some other dry material, wouldn't that interfere in other treatment processes?

Yes, you are correct we do not see the household cartridge-based toilet as strictly married to composting and the household toilets are urine diverting (I will use the acronym CBS for Cartridge-Based Sanitation). It really depends on the context in which the service and toilets will be used as to the most appropriate back end processing. In Haiti it made sense to use composting because, SOIL has done such a fantastic job of exploring and creating composting facilities. They have also spent a long time nurturing and investigating the market for finished compost in Haiti. There is evidence that compost markets appear to be rather robust in other locations including Africa and Latin America.

However, in many contexts that may not be the case and it could be far less technically feasible to use composting. In those cases there are other technologies, which are being developed that could be slotted in and replace composting as the treatment methodology. The key is which technology is most appropriate for the situation and how will it impact the service.

1.) Waste Enterprisers in Mombasa, Kenya are doing some very innovative work with fecal sludge where they turn it into biofuel pellets that can be used in industrial processes in Europe. The waste coming from our system would be especially welcomed as it has much lower moisture content.
2.) The Climate Foundation is doing some really cool work with biochar. They are currently testing shipping container sized biochar units with Sanergy in Nairobi Kenya. The waste that Sanergy in collecting is very similar to the waste that SOIL is collecting in Haiti.
3.) Loowatt is doing some very interesting work with biogas and container based toilets in Madagascar. However, they are also using a proprietary bio-plastic film to seal the waste for transport. If you were considering biogas, the cover material choice would be very important and need to be considered carefully. Most Anaerobic digesters need a higher moisture content than what our waste has, and woody substrates tend to be harder to digest. Different digester technologies like high-solids anaerobic digestion could still be interesting. The choice of cover material is also important for composting (in Haiti, SOIL is using sieved sugar cane bagas and crushed peanut shells).
4.) Black Soldier Fly is something that SOIL has looked into in Haiti but as Steve Sugden noted they seem to really prefer other forms of organic waste, which was also true in Haiti. This is not to say that it can’t be done however it will have a much steeper learning curve.

Disposal is a key component but one that several teams are working on. CBS can work with multiple types of back end treatment which increases flexibility. The key is to find the disposal and treatment method that fits the location.

Cost of unit production - seems to be recurrent issue and I wonder if the wooden / concrete versions have the same appeal. We really need to agree on one design and then approach a single supplier and encourage them to invest in a mold. They usually talk in selling 10s of 1000 of units to enable them to recover their mold costs, so even if we got together, it would be a hard sell. Tim at Envirosan in South Africa may be interested and the may even have an existing design which could be used.

I agree that cost of toilet units is key. SOIL has been able to significantly reduce prices with their concrete models. As Steve has noted, there is potentially less aspirational value with locally produced wooden or concrete models. A key hurdle Steve also hit on and that we have encountered with our model specifically is the need to produce 10s of thousands of units to reach economies of scale. I think Envirosan is a great option for manufacturing. However, I would caution against modifying their current designs, as the ones we are familiar with are not well suited for compact, cartridge-based emptying. We fully agree with the idea of getting several organizations on board that are all interested in ordering units to reach the necessary scale. It may not be possible to have one universal design, however, as it could lead to a design that works ok for everyone but not great for anyone. If we could get all the interested parties to come together to express their needs and finalize a design that meets those we could really make some progress. This is an effort that re.source is very interested in leading.

Especially in rural India, it seems quite heard to push such toilet as people do not want to see their shit after they leave.

You are completely correct, this model is not designed for rural areas. There are several reasons CBS is a poor fit in rural areas.
1.) Distance and transport costs are much greater.
2.) Demand for sanitation is much lower than in urban areas.
3.) There are much lower cost (or more culturally targeted) options that often make more sense like the Arborloo or the twin-pit pour-flush models.
4.) Space constraints are less of an issue.

Given the availability of such technologies for rural areas, we tend to view the challenge of rural sanitation as a demand creation, behavior change, supply chain, and business model challenge more than a challenge revolving around the toilet interface itself.

i see the chances of trying this in India is in urban communities where people do not have space at all in home for constructing toilet, neither they can go out for defecating. i also would love to know your experience in reducing the cost of this toilet if it is made of fiber. In urban areas, the business could be around collection and transportation if it is mechanical in India. It needs to be completely mechanical here in India because the low against manual scavenging.

As noted above you are correct, urban areas would be the ideal location to attempt this. We have explored toilets built from fiberglass as have x-runner in Peru and Mosan in Bangladesh. Fiberglass is great for low volume runs however; there is very little reduction of costs with scale. Fiberglass toilets are much higher quality than either wooden or concrete toilets and definitely easier to clean.

Finally, you are also correct that the legal situation is especially tricky in India. Other organizations have attempted efforts in India only to be limited in their scope. I think David makes a good point that before trying anything in the CBS or ecosan suite of options, it is best to get the buy-in not only of the community but from government and regulatory officials as well. The idea of having a demonstration community would be especially helpful in getting their buy-in. It is our understanding that Sulabh has some interest in CBS, and they may have the right relationships to be able to start exploring this system in India.

As for the units, we currently have an urban (slum) system that doesn't give us the life/cost ratio we want. We are trying to get the price down to $300 with a life cycle of 30 years, and are working on a 'virtual' final design as I write. Our model is self-sustaining over this kind of life-cycle.

David, thanks for sharing this information. We'd love to hear more about your toilet design, and particularly the constraints you're designing for- squatters and washers, I presume- but other considerations about space, any thoughts about material, waste removal interface, etc.

Thank you all and we of course would love to hear more comments and thoughts.
All the best,
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:17:57 +0000
Re: How can I format the text in my own post? (making words bold, underlined, using bullet point lists...) - by: muench
Why the font type and size is always the same, when we hit the submit button? Is user at liberty to make a change?

Answer: the user cannot change the font type.
But the user can change the text size in order to highlight something for example.

For that, when you are in the editor field, select the text you want to make larger and then click on the button above that has the Tt-symbol.

Example with text size 6:

Larger text

In the code, it looks like this:

Another example:

Middle sized text

(this is text of size 5)

I am sorry that we do not yet have a so called "what you see is what you get" editor (WYSIWYG), but only this editor here which may seem a bit old fashioned. Personally, I quite like it, it makes me feel like I understand HTML-language. But I am used to it and use it on a daily basis, so for me it's easy and intuitive.

Perhaps when we look at forum upgrading options, we can see if a new editor (in a new version of Kunena) could be possible - see this thread:


* I have moved the rest of his post to another category where it fits better and will be answered separately (]]>
Registration, login and first steps Wed, 23 Jul 2014 21:01:49 +0000
Re: City Partnerships for Urban Sanitation Service Delivery (BMGF and DfID funded) - by: christoph I would be interested in some more information about the round 1. Is that possible?
Specifically I am interested in:
  • Knowing how many cities /utilities did take part in the process? This would give a little insight if the topic is in the awareness of the utilities or not.
  • How many projects were submitted with substantial help of a donor or better how many of the utilities were able to write a proposal just with local help? How many of these utilities came into the round of 11?
  • Could you tell us a bit about the proposals – it might be possible to learn something about “trends” – what do utilities see as a doable service model?
  • Of the eleven what are the focuses of these utilities – are they similar or very different one to the other?
  • Is there something you would consider – that is a brilliant new approach or is it more “put together systematically” what we more or less (should) know (which would be a very large step forward to have that in practice)?
  • And for my personal favorite. Is there a UDDT service concept as well?

Upscaling, sanitation governance, institutional aspects, sanitation policies Wed, 23 Jul 2014 20:43:54 +0000
Re: RFP now open: City Partnerships for Urban Sanitation Service Delivery - by: Roshan
Eleven cities from India, Bangladesh, Nepal, South Africa, Liberia and Uganda are selected for further study (Phase I) on urban sanitation/Fecal Sludge Management and to develop business models for better service delivery. Out of 11 cities few will be selected for further investment to demonstrate business models in urban sanitation. We will provide more information about the project once cities are successful in second phase.

Upscaling, sanitation governance, institutional aspects, sanitation policies Wed, 23 Jul 2014 20:13:41 +0000
useful links on sanitation - by: Roshan

This is another link that ADB has created in Sanitation.

Announcements Wed, 23 Jul 2014 19:41:45 +0000
Youtube Playlist on Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) - by: Katakana
I am Kanako Katayama from Japan, having worked on Menstrual Hygiene Management (MHM) and WASH in Schools (WinS) in rural India for Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)-funded project and in Japan, with education and global health background. I had experiences of hard time with toilet-phobia during whole my school life and the strong interest got me to pursue and work on WinS and MHM.
This is my first proper post and, since SuSanA has been the place I’ve always come to hear voices on WASH news for the past 2.5 years, I would like to start with expressing my gratitude to all - Thank you so much!

Following conversations with Elisabeth, WASH United, and WSSCC on twitter, I am writing today to share my Youtube playlist on MHM. (This does not mean that I own the videos or endorse/promote each of them.)
It contains 50 videos on MHM topics that I have come across in recent years and collected together in this Playlist to make them easily accessible.

Also, as SuSanA Youtube account has got an MHM playlist as well (, I would like to suggest that we make new playlists grouped by sub-categories together! My suggestions of sub-category are “field report”, “from conference”, “talk (TED Talk etc.)”, “products/commercials”, “art”, “educational animation”, “MH Day”, “project (movie etc.)”
Your help of suggestions of 1) other videos, 2) sub-categories or general comments would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you!

~ Kanako]]>
Menstrual hygiene management (MHM) Wed, 23 Jul 2014 17:57:38 +0000
Re: Wanting a better way to test pathogen inactivation? Us too! Can you help me crowdsource a better way? - by: KeithBell joeturner wrote:
But even if they are saying that, it still is not very helpful because you would have to be able to plate out lots of different microbes, which is expensive and not really the point of an indicator.

Hey Joe, based on your statement it appears you may not understand that 454 pyrosequencing based on amplification of microbial DNA is very fast and cheap. It's high throughput, meaning one pass of a probe reveals tons of data based on programming. I'm not an expert in this area, but believe this is the future. The equipment may be cost-prohibitive at present, but there are many institutions owning this equipment looking for research projects.

The same technology used to determine microbial populations in human intestines in the diarrhea studies I posted is also used in WWTP, but this is in its infancy. Functional medicine doctors order the same tests for their patients, called the future of medicine. Here's a 2012 WWTP study using pyrosequencing; this is opening up new worlds of information including previously unclassified bacteria dominant due to the wastewater treatment process:

The original post states: "What pathogens should we test? Right now we are planning on a kit for helminth and E.coli."

My post is quite on topic as one of the studies I posted states E. coli is actually significantly decreased in diarrhea. This should be eye-opening to many who never considered E. coli as protective. The study implicates Bacilli as cause of diarrhea, so perhaps Bacilli would be a good indicator.

Thanks for your patience, folks, just trying to be helpful.]]>
Health, hygiene and disability issues Wed, 23 Jul 2014 17:36:03 +0000