Improved methods for estimating volumes and accumulation rates of faecal sludge

Background

Sanitation access in urban areas of low-income countries is largely provided through non-sewered sanitation, where the faecal sludge accumulating in those onsite systems needs to be managed adequately. However, measuring volumes and accumulation rates of faecal sludge at the individual household level is difficult, as sludge is typically underground in informally constructed containments, with no level of standardization. The lack of reliable methods to estimate the quantities and qualities that need to be managed at community to city-wide scales, represents a major challenge to the planning and implementation of management and treatment solutions, frequently resulting in failures. Inadequately sized treatment and management solutions impact operations and are a direct risk to public health. Hence, there is great demand for an approach that derives better estimates of the quality and quantity of faecal sludge by development agencies, consultants, government organizations, academics and practitioners.

Objective

To develop a reliable method that can estimate volumes and accumulation rates of faecal sludge at larger scales in cities of low- and middle-income countries.

Expected benefits

  • In partner countries: Validated approaches to improve human waste management methods for sewerless cities in low- and middle-income countries.
  • In Switzerland: Strengthened knowledge and increased collaboration between Swiss researchers and specialized consulting firms.

Contact Inormation

Christoph Lüthi and Linda Strande, Christoph.Luethi@eawag.ch, phone: +41 58 765 5614

Dept of Sanitation, Water and Solid Waste for Development, Eawag-Sandec

Improved methods for estimating volumes and accumulation rates of faecal sludge
Improved methods for estimating volumes and accumulation rates of faecal sludge

Partner countries: India, Nepal and Bangladesh

Cost: CHF 650,000

Duration: 3 years