SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Fri, 25 Apr 2014 08:04:45 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: Technology for treating Clean Team waste - by: AParker
As explained earlier in this thread, we're currently working with Clean Team to develop a treatment system for their waste (look out for a post on WSUP's blog about this soon). All the systems we're looking at use biological treatment so we're hoping the blue liquid won't adversely affect this, but we won't know until we've tried it! We'll also need to make sure the waste that we discharge is of a suitable standard to discharge into a water course. There are guidelines from the Ghana EPA but actually they're very high (higher than in the UK!). We'll also look to maximise biogas and fertiliser recovery but the effluent quality is our first priority.

There shouldn't be anything other than the blue liquid and faeces in the waste as no other sawdust etc is added. The cost of the blue liquid is included in the overall servicing charge for the toilet.

I hope this answers your questions about the waste treatment but let me know if there's anything else!

Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:53:35 +0000
Re: The Clam - A compostable chamber pot. - by: Mona Thanks for sharing and welcome to SuSanA forum! The chamber pot recipe sounds great. I'm very curious to know more, since I started in February to research on the same idea. I found a company that produces cellulose bowls for hospital toilets. The bowls are from recycled paper and are supposed to be water-tight at least for 4h. See their website: (for some reason there are many more products shown on their German website, just change the language to see more)
Very interesting are the disposable urinals for men and women that are also made from cellulose and keep up to 1,5 liters of urine. The bowls and urinals are disposed into a machine (macerator) that defibrates and liquefies it. The sludge is disposed into the sewerage system.

Im experimenting with the bowls right now and would like to know more about your version.
- how long does your chamber hold the waste without leaking?
- how is the ratio, cardboard to grass clippings?
- could you post a picture?

Thanks in advance!

here a picture of the test with home-made fake-poop! ]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 24 Apr 2014 16:21:23 +0000
Re: Piloting mobile sanitation with full service provision (MoSan, now in Kenya) - by: Mona
I asked users to deliver their inner feces containers from the MoSan to our central treatment site, where Sanivation's concentrator is located.
- We had little time to find people who are willing to try it. Either people were busy preparing their crops, others find it more convenient that the collector comes to their house and others were limited in mobility (disabled person and mother with children)
- to simplify the container collection, I still think the deliverance/ drop off of feces containers by users themselves could be an alternative, but it is important to have well planned servicing zones and short ways till the next "Treatment Site"
- in this case the container plays a more important role. it does not only need to fulfill technical requirements for safe transport, also cultural and aesthetical. people will be more willing to carry "a bucket of shit" if it transports attributes like cleanliness, hygiene and supports the idea of sanitation as a status symbol!

During collection times, people were not at home and we had to deal with delays:
- one solution is to place container outside the house at a safe place (e.g. behind the gate)
- in this case, the container needs an outstanding design or labeling to avoid stealing and confusion with existing containers in the neighborhood

Another interesting fact is that users prefer a male collector!
- the reason is that women are more likely to do gossip and are more curious regarding your home and privacy. Users explained that our male collector is perfect for the job, because he is just doing his business and not paying attention to your house and private things.

In Kenya people buy things usually on demand (single-portion packages for tea, coffee, washing powder, phone credit in very low amounts, etc.)
- this should be considered when designing the payment options for the sanitation service, e.g. pay per week or number of collections per month
- in Kenya phone payments are very common and famous. It could be possible to transfer a small fee after each collection

I will upload a flickr photo album and share more pictures with you!

All the best,

The collector service: The user asked the collector to enter her house and do the replacement inside.]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 10 Apr 2014 10:42:40 +0000
Re: Piloting mobile sanitation with full service provision (MoSan, now in Kenya) - by: Mona I wish I could have joined the "Unclogging the Blockages in Sanitation" conference in Uganda in February to meet you in person and share ideas. Unfortunately I could not make it on a short notice.
I saw the Envirosan toilet at Eawag in Zurich and really liked it. Kentainers in Kenya has a very similar toilet, but produced in a little lower quality:

And yes, actually I am looking for ways to up-scale the MoSan production. We will do another pilot with 8 prototypes this year and afterwards look for ways to lower the cost and decide on the production location. Many conversations with engineers and manufacturer are ahead!
I will definitely get in touch with Envirosan. Thanks again for sharing!]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 10 Apr 2014 10:15:24 +0000
Re: Piloting mobile sanitation with full service provision (MoSan, now in Kenya) - by: Mona I have to apologize for my absence from time to time. I really love the SuSanA forum, just sometimes when being very busy and traveling a lot, it can be difficult to keep track of the huge amount of knowledge shared.

Thanks Chris, Christoph, Krischan and Joe for sharing the discussion about dried feces as cover material.
I see the risk when people handling dried feces the feeling of cleanliness and hygiene is not given. Even when a scoop is used, people handle shit. From interviews in Kenya I learned that some people even feel ashamed to look back into the toilet to do any covering. A health-worker from Naivasha explained to me that is why she is teaching people the importance to look back and pay attention to your poop, especially when being sick. She said, that most people feel ashamed to do so, no matter where and how the toilet looks.
Also with the MoSan we had cases, where people did not cover feces sufficiently with ash. It is difficult to find the reasons, since most users have plenty of ash. The behavior change of looking into the toilet for covering your own poop could be one reason. But usually when people realize that the smell can be avoided, the covering gets better!

I wanted to share some news with you. Just a few weeks ago, the MoSan toilet was published in the book "A Collection of Contemporary Toilet Designs". Many other great toilet designs are collected and briefly explained. Links for further information are provided. The book can be ordered for £19.95 or downloaded for free! Many thanks to EOOS for selecting MoSan and publishing it!!!
Publisher: EOOS and WEDC Loughborough, UK, Author: Rod Shaw

Bernhard from EOOS also posted the book on SuSanA > Urine diversion systems (includes UDDT and UD flush toilet)

source:; page 23]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 10 Apr 2014 09:52:41 +0000
Implementing an autonomous public toilets services in Libreville - by: Florent The implementation of the action is reflected particularly in coordinating project’ development strategy with the City (the creation of a steering committee and a focal point located in the Environment Service). During this first year of the project, TDM identified and selected in collaboration with the focal point of the Mayor of Libreville 10 local non-state actors to implement the project. In parallel, a socio- economic study on the librevillian public toilets was conducted in conjunction with the first surveys on technical studies for two centers of public toilets to be constructed under the project. It is expected in year 2 to train the 10 local actors already recruited on techniques sanitation and management structure. Based on a diagnosis of the local actors operations, the terms of reference of the various training sessions were completed and will be implemented. The training programs are being assembled. Late selection Local actors impact the work on the tools and procedures for consultation and contracts between the City of Libreville and the local non-state actors.
In links with the European Union, TDM will continue to share experiences on this project.
To increase information about this project, we are in the process of drawing up the preliminary technical project for the two centers of public toilets. Design centers public toilets will be built in year 2 is not defined yet. The idea is to set up an independent service and minimizing costs. We are working on this.
The management will be carried out by local non-state actors that we are to train and select (support structures 10 which 2 will be selected). These structures will be accountable to the city under a specific agreement (the terms of which have not yet been defined). The socio -economic context was analyzed and soon you will found the report associated with free access on our website.

Documents are available in the french part of the forum!

Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 20 Mar 2014 11:55:13 +0000
Re: The Clam - A compostable chamber pot. - by: Billy Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Sun, 09 Mar 2014 19:21:06 +0000 Re: The Clam - A compostable chamber pot. - by: canaday
Welcome to the Forum and thanks for sharing the Compostable Clam. I agree that we should creatively look for simple solutions, but I think the making of these Clams is too labor-intensive (which could be solved via mass production if this is taken to a big scale).

I show a solution for dealing with the urine while filling your clams in this simpler and even more minimalist toilet design:
in the form of this portable urinal made with two plastic bottles

It would be good to be more careful about the times, temperatures, and containment of the composting process, to make sure that potential pathogens get destroyed.

What part of Brazil are you in? Is it hot and tropical or are you in the Southeast? Your English is very good. Are you originally from Brazil or elsewhere? What are your training and background in?

Best wishes,
Chris Canaday]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Sun, 09 Mar 2014 01:51:40 +0000
Re: Technology for treating Clean Team waste - by: Kevinkuhn
I really like the project and it is quite exciting to see the progress in that. In general I think, that those types of business models are a good solution to create a economically sustainable business with dry toilets.

But, I´d like to add a few questions regarding some ecological issues.

1.) You are talking about "blue stuff", which is also used for camping toilets. What are the properties of these chemicals regarding biological decomposition of the feces? What are the functions regarding disinfection? And, could it be a harmful substance for the natural river system? Do you add any other grid materials like wood chips, sand, ash, straw,..., to the toilets?

1.2) I would also like to know if the cost for these chemicals are introduced in the maintenance cost or if the users need to purchase it additionally?

2.) Why do you ship the toilets to Ghana? I am not well informed about the local conditions, but isn´t there a way to produce them locally? This would create even more job opportunities and the environmental impact of shipping would be reduced.

3.) Why don´t you try to reuse the feces and the urine? Couldn´t this be an additionally source for generating returns?

I am curious to your answers and hope to learn a lot from them.

Best regards
Kevin Kuhn]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Sat, 08 Mar 2014 18:53:06 +0000
Re: Technology for treating Clean Team waste - by: AParker

It's an adiditonal chemical which is added by Clean Team. Besically the "blue stuff" you find in a camping toilet!

Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 06 Mar 2014 18:12:01 +0000
Re: Technology for treating Clean Team waste - by: KimAndersson Thanks for your answer and for sharing more details and the progress of your project. I agree that anaerobic digestion will be an interesting alternative in your case, and we look forward to hear what technologies you will take into consideration and test for the liquid treatment.

However, I’m still a bit confused about the liquid you are talking about. You say that it “is from the liquid that the waste sits in”. Do you mean the humidity in the fecal material itself? In my experience this should in most cases not have large amounts of excess liquid.

Thanks again!
Best regards,
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Thu, 06 Mar 2014 08:23:41 +0000
The Clam - A compostable chamber pot. - by: Billy I am not a scientist. My concern as to the destination of human waste is relatively recent. I am 57, married and we have a large family and live in Brazil. We use a flush toilet at home, although I secretly squat outdoors onto a mat of garden clippings placed on a tray, which then gets mixed with kitchen waste and placed inside a compost heap, following the Joe Jenkins humanure method.
I have been experimenting trying to devise how to collect and temporary store kitchen waste. My experiments lead me to the compostable clam, a chamber pot for feces only. The compostable clam is better than a mat of grass and leaves because it reduces the chance of getting bitten by ticks.
Anyway, here’s how to make the compostable clam, a method that recycles cardboard and grass clipping to make a biodegradable chamber pot for feces.
  • Dampen the cardboard enough to allow for the peeling off of a layer of paper with any coloured print on it.
  • Allow the cardboard without print on it to soak in water for a couple of days, tearing it into small pieces.
  • Pass the soaked plain cardboard through a blender and pour the resulting pulp into a big basin.
  • Mix in some grass clippings. Make sure the cardboard pulp and grass are well mixed together. The next steps are similar to making recycled paper.
  • Using the underside of a 50 litre bin lid as a tray, place a round rice sifter in the tray and fill to the brim with water. Use a large bowl to hold the tray in place.
  • Grab a couple of handfuls of the pulp and grass clipping mixture and place it in the puddle of water in the sifter on the flooded upturned lid and spread it about evenly.
  • Raise the sifter and place it over the top of the empty open bin.
  • Press down on the mixture using another sifter in order to take out excess water.
  • Place the sifter with the evenly spread, pressed mixture in the sun to dry.

If all has worked out well, the dried mixture should be easily removable from the sifter and shall have the form of a saucer.
The saucer can be used as a chamber pot, but only for firm feces. Urine shall have to somehow find its way into a jerry can. Diarrhea shall require further study!
Once squatted over, the deposit can be covered by another saucer forming a clam, the contents of which shall be the bonding material.
This self sealing clam can be placed in a dry, critter proof recipient for collection at a convenient time.
Collected clams can be disintegrated using collected urine and the result either composted or placed directly in troughs dug in the field and covered with at least 5cm of earth.
The dry clams are not obnoxious and neither is urine in a jerry can. The mixture of the two definitely is!
The dry clams could, theoretically, be buried under 5cm of earth and the earth then watered using the separately collected urine, which would be less obnoxious. I have disintegrated clams in the compost heap using water. It wasn’t too horrible.
Theoretically, grass seeds could be placed in the pulp and grass mixture such that should the clams be placed on a field, grass would sprout! Theoretically, clam halves could be used to cover open air deposits. Heavy rain showers would be a problem though.
The benefits are that people would be able to relieve themselves in the privacy of their rooms, the feces retains its nutritional values and becomes easily transportable for collection.
The clam halves can be made by anybody with a blender, access to sun, used cardboard and grass clipping, a couple of sifters or more, a basin and a bin and some time.
I rather like the idea. It is cheap and makes for easy storage and collection and application. People could be paid for their excrement and thus start to give it value. Well treated it would treat us well. Mistreated we get shit (famine and disease). Well treated we get wealth (health and food). As my mother would say “waste not, want not”.]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Wed, 05 Mar 2014 13:03:06 +0000
Re: Questions about Sanergy - by: Sanergy
Sanergy is delighted to formally join the SuSanA Forum! We have contributed as individuals in the past, and now we are excited to have our company’s views be represented in a more professional capacity. We believe that this community offers compelling insights and shares the best of the best practices in hygienic sanitation delivery. We also admire the tireless work of Elisabeth von Muench as she truly advances the conversation on sustainable sanitation. We look forward to working with participants in the forum to improve our work.

This month, we wanted to draw your attention to two interesting pieces of work that are happening here at Sanergy: schools and mystery loo users.

In April 2013, we partnered with Oxfam to provide hygienic sanitation in schools. Oxfam provides financial support, Sanergy identifies schools in the communities we serve and installs Fresh Life Toilets, and Wash United provides ongoing trainings for the students. The results? 15 schools with about 2800 kids having 40 Fresh Life Toilets. Enrolment - a key driver for sustainability - is up 20% at schools. Attendance is up about 20% also - indicating that girls in particular are benefiting from private, dignified hygienic sanitation. You can read more here: (July 2013)
and (Nov. 2013)

Our work has attracted the positive attention of the Ministry of Education, which is working with us both to implement our program in government-run schools and to develop relevant curriculum.

The Mystery Loo User program is an important innovation that we developed when we realized that while we love our Fresh Life Operators, we know that they might put their best foot forward when our field officers are coming to visit. Therefore, we set up a program that we’ve now run for about 6 months which ensures that we secretly visit every toilet in the Fresh Life Network at least twice a month. The “mystery loo user“ filled out 16 questions about cleanliness and the quality of service. The results have been really interesting. Most notably, those who are responsible for re-paying a loan to Kiva were far more likely to have extra clean toilets to provide better customer service (Kiva is a micro-lending online platform: It’s early days yet, but once again a strong indicator that market forces and a clear business mindset lead to better provision. You can read more about our findings here:

We welcome the community’s feedback!

Edith and David

Edith Karimi (Communications) and David Auerbach (Co-Founder) work at Sanergy, a social enterprise that makes hygienic sanitation accessible and affordable in Africa's informal settlements.]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Wed, 05 Mar 2014 11:00:41 +0000
Re: Technology for treating Clean Team waste - by: AParker
Thanks for getting in touch and sorry for the delay in replying - I've been on holiday!

The liquid fraction is from the liquid that the waste sits in. There shouldn't be any other liquid in the toilet if the urine diversion is working ok. There have been some trials on a dry system but I'm not sure these are being taken forward currently. It's certainly not the focus of our current research.

I don't think I've explained the system very well - there is only one level of treatment - for about 1000 households. The focus of the treatment is on the liquid side - and we haven't committed to AD yet though it does seem one of the most promising options. We wouldn't remove the liquid prior to AD, but rather it's lookign like we'll use AD and some further treatment steps on the effluent.

We haven't decided which technologies we will try yet but we will do soon.

This project doesn't have any formal link to our Reinvent the Toilet project called the Nano Membrane Toilet. But actually the staff working on it our the same so there is plenty of learning being shared between the two projects.

Hope this answers your questions - would love to continue the discussion.]]>
Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Mon, 03 Mar 2014 16:44:38 +0000
Re: Mobile latrine in Addis Ababa - by: christian.rieck you can check out a variety of post concerning the topic of mobile sanitation. For example the discussion on mobile sanitation and the required service chain to manage the faecal material.

Mobile or portable solutions, public toilets Mon, 03 Mar 2014 09:47:28 +0000