SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Thu, 29 Sep 2016 22:06:58 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Criteria to assess the safety, sustainability and functionality of the feacal sludge management practice at household level - by: wilfried Dear all,

I am working on the characterization of the existing faecal sludge management practices in household level in the capital city of Cameroon, Yaounde. In order to assess their safety, sustainability and functionality of the system, I would like to know if there are some criteria usually used.

Thank you in advance for your contribution
With regards
Faecal sludge management Fri, 23 Sep 2016 05:32:14 +0000
Re: New FSM Page on Wikipedia - can you help us improve it further? - by: muench
I am really proud of this achievement of setting up an article on FSM in Wikipedia! I will monitor its Google ranking over the coming months (I am sure it will climb to the top quite quickly; at the moment it's the book by Sandec that appears at the top of a Google search on fecal sludge management). With the next FSM conference coming up soon (in February in India), I think it's really important that we have a joint understanding and agreement of what the definition of FSM (fecal sludge management) is and what the key information is that we want lay people to easily access and understand when they come to this page.

It's been a real pleasure working with Dave on this page (he provided most of the content and I massaged it into the Wikipedia style). We both hope that other SuSanA members who are interested in FSM will give us an honest critique and constructive criticism for improving this page further.

I have put some suggestions for improvements on the talk page ( as follows:

  • Re-check existing references (e.g. year missing for the reference on constructed wetlands by AIT), add further references at critical places
  • Re-check clarity, shorten sentences that are too long or complex
  • Simplify language further for lay persons if needed
  • Re-check captions of images, possibly insert more images
  • Decide if the article on septage should be merged into here. I would say yes.

There is also text that was proposed in the earlier draft which we didn't end up using (it become too detailed for lay people) but feel free to take a look at that as well:

So don't be shy, get involved - whether you are an expert in FSM or a novice doesn't matter! The target group for this article are interested lay people and those working in the WASH sector.

Faecal sludge management Tue, 16 Aug 2016 12:50:16 +0000
New FSM Page on Wikipedia - can you help us improve it further? - by: dmrobbins10
We are excited to announce the new FSM page on Wikipedia! Here is the link:

Wikipedia is a free, open content online encyclopedia created through the collaborative effort of a community of users known as Wikipedians. The FSM page is a good way to highlight the work we have all been doing while providing useful information for those interested in learning more about the topic. We encourage everyone to help us improve it further. We know that it’s far from perfect but we think it’s a good foundation to build upon. If you are interested in contributing, simply go to the link. You do not need to be a registered user to edit articles.

Or if you would rather talk about it, here is a link to the talk page where we can discuss further improvements:

Also if you are interested in providing additional context about sanitation content on Wikipedia, here is the link to use:

Thanks for your interest in this. We are looking forward to seeing your edits and contributions.

Dave Robbins and Elisabeth von Muench.]]>
Faecal sludge management Fri, 12 Aug 2016 06:43:02 +0000
Re: Tool for Technology Choice for FSM-SANITECH - by: pkjha
I have gone through a few pages of the Tool and have some fundamental queries.
1. What is the rate of accumulation of septage? The Tool mentions faecal production rate in different groups of countries. For designing a system for treatment of septage, accumulation rate is important design criterion.

2. The following are the quotes from page nos. 6 and 7
“ Anaerobic sanitation systems like single-pit latrines, septic tanks, biogas settlers, small and large- scale anaerobic digesters and waste water stabilization pond systems produce less sludge than aerobic sanitation system( eg., trickling filters, activated sludge, etc)

"The sludge generated from an anaerobic sanitation system is stabilized and is much better with respect to odour than aerobic sanitation system".

i. Is there any technical explanation of the above 1st quote? If it is true (I don’t think so) then why one should go for SBR, MBR, MBBR and ASP technologies, mentioned in the Tool kit as technical options. These technologies are much expensive, requiring well trained technical staff than septic tank.
ii. Is it true that sludge from septic tank is stabilized? Check its BOD from the Tool list. There is no need of further treatment of a stabilized sludge and there should be no problem of septage management from septic tank or single pit latrine, if the above quote is correct.
“Anaerobic sludge is better with respect to odour than an aerobic sanitation system”, is quite difficult to understand. There is always production of hydrogen sulphide under anaerobic condition which has pungent odour. In case of aerobic condition there is no formation of such gas. Then how anaerobic is better than aerobic with respect to odour?

Faecal sludge management Wed, 03 Aug 2016 11:05:20 +0000
Re: Tool for Technology Choice for FSM-SANITECH - by: sujaya
Another version of SANITECH ready.

Username - This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
Password - demo@123

Technologies included as of now in the Tool has been put together in a compendium (included in the Help section of the tool) and also available in the following link:

Look forward to hearing from you.

Faecal sludge management Fri, 29 Jul 2016 07:18:44 +0000
Re: Fecal sludge management platform - Maputo, Mozambique - by: AndreMA
Thanks for the message. Well, things did not really go the way we wanted and we did not hand in the full proposal as we now re-assessing how to proceed. You can read all about it on our web-page ( ) and also download the two working documents that we produced. We do think that such platform can be a great tool and we hope that somehow both documents can help people who have similar ideas.]]>
Faecal sludge management Fri, 17 Jun 2016 09:34:02 +0000
Re: Fecal sludge management platform - Maputo, Mozambique - by: kengelly
I hope your proposal was successful - would love to hear if you have any updates to share.

Faecal sludge management Thu, 16 Jun 2016 14:52:16 +0000
Re: Faster dewatering of faecal sludge - by: Moritz
What we currently see with some research in Kampala is that electric conductivity (EC) concentrations really matter. Pit latrine FS in Kampala has an around three times higher EC (because of the urine which gets concentrated in lined pits) compared to septic tank FS. This appears to inhibit conditioning with Chitosan. We are currently dilution the sludge to lower EC concentration to see whether electric conductivity is really the driving force here (pH is still around 7).]]>
Faecal sludge management Tue, 07 Jun 2016 14:45:12 +0000
Re: Faster dewatering of faecal sludge - by: JKMakowka
In acidic solutions, chitosan becomes an extended chain and charged, while in neutral solutions, chitosan is a more coiled structure and only slightly charged (Pan et al. 1999). Swimming pool water pH must be maintained around 7.5 for human comfort and equipment safety concerns. Thus, chitosan did not suit for swimming pools. A non-charge coagulation mechanism has been proposed for chitosan (Parsons et al. 2007), but the non-charge mechanism did not appear to result in significantly increased microsphere removals by chitosan coagulation under the conditions examined in the present study.

The referenced papers are:

Pan, J.R., Huang, C., Chen, S. & Chung, Y. 1999 Evaluation of a modified chitosan biopolymer for coagulation of colloidal particles. Colloids and Surfaces A: Physicochemical and Engineering Aspects, 147(3), 359-364.

Parsons, S.A., Jefferson, B., Jarvis, P., Sharp, E., Dixon, D., Bolto, B. & Scales, P. 2007 Treatment of waters with elevated organic content. London: AWWA Research Foundation, IWA Publishing.]]>
Faecal sludge management Thu, 02 Jun 2016 14:07:57 +0000
Re: What should be done with faecal sludge with formaldehyde from portapotties? - by: AKSantaCruz Faecal sludge management Thu, 19 May 2016 19:25:59 +0000 Re: What should be done with faecal sludge with formaldehyde from portapotties? - by: canaday
Thanks for this info. I am glad to see that formaldehyde does break down over time.

From the Wikipedia Formaldehyde page, I navegated to
which states that for soil degradation, it has a typical DT50 of 6 days, sometimes reaching to 20 days, and that it does not remain persistent in the soil.

Thanks for pointing out that it breaks down into CO2 and water. It also does not include toxic elements, like mercury.

It seems there should be no problem applying Deep Row Entrenchment directly, on open land, at a prudent distance from streams and rivers, plus the groundwater being deep. It does not seem feasible to put this sludge in ponds first, especially since we are in an earthquake emergency and such waste stabilization ponds do not likely exist in the area.

Best wishes,
Chris Canaday]]>
Faecal sludge management Thu, 19 May 2016 04:09:08 +0000
Re: What should be done with faecal sludge with formaldehyde from portapotties? - by: Ian
Most people that provide chemical toilets use folmaldehyde or other aldehyde products as they are much cheaper than the alternatives which we tend to consider more environmentally friendly. However formaldehydes are not actually a problem in a diluted form. Most of the commonly used holding-tank chemicals contain formaldehyde and are toxic or inhibitory to wastewater at full strength, but completely biodegrades with dilution and time. It breaks down into simpler molecules (like carbon
dioxide and water) through the natural action of oxygen, sunlight, bacteria and heat. The
biodegradation is considered to be faster than most other deodorant products, and therefore
formaldehyde-based products are considered the most effective holding tank chemicals

For shock loads of formaldehyde to aerobic systems, the half-kill dose (= 50 % reduction in biological activity) is as much as 200 mg/litre. For continuous loading, the minimum half-kill dose is reported as about 20 mg/litre, but bacteria will acclimate to eventually remove larger concentrations of formaldehyde. For anaerobic treatment, the critical formaldehyde concentration is slightly higher than for aerobic treatment. When formaldehyde is discharged to septic tanks, it could lead to bacterial die-off and clogging of the french drain. The critical concentration is
reported to be about 250 mg/litre, which is much higher than the estimated values of
formaldehyde in chemical toilets.

So you should not be concerned about adding the content of chemical toilets to an existing wastewater treatment works if you remain within these parameters - which will normally be the case. If you want to use deep row entrenchment, it may be an option to first use a lagoon to allow for partial degradation and partial dewatering, followed by entrenchment of the sludge. The main problem with stinking toilets would be that they are not replaced at the required frequency. The main concern on small wastewater treatment works may be the much higher organic loading from chemical toilets (about 20 x more than sewered waste) rather than the presence of formaldehyde.

This information comes from a study undertaken by the University of the Witwatersrand in South Africa where this concern had been raised.]]>
Faecal sludge management Tue, 17 May 2016 21:47:18 +0000
Re: What should be done with faecal sludge with formaldehyde from portapotties? - by: canaday
Thanks for your input.

I will investigate what they are using. I think it is mainly a matter of private Ecuadorian companies (which may or not be scrupulous).

What should be done with faecal sludge that contains formaldehyde?
Are there other ingredients that are also unacceptable?

So, if those chemicals are not present, we will promote Deep Row Entrenchment.

I will write to Doctors Without Borders, who is running one of the main camps.

Best wishes,
Chris Canaday]]>
Faecal sludge management Mon, 16 May 2016 12:36:19 +0000
Re: FSM per capita cost for Nepal or South Asia (seeking information) - by: ZachWhite
From what I know of the ESI methodology the costs account for three main cost component; the CapEx, OpEx, and CapManEx of that technology type.

The data that Guy and Mili used for the study was all from the published literature (of which there is very little). This introduces some uncertainty into interpreting the figures as you are forced to extrapolate national estimates from whatever is published, and as is well known costs are highly context specific and can even vary considerably depending on what combination of technologies are used in a chain, scale, and so on... The other challenge with secondary data is often that projects do not neatly record their costs in cost classifications, meaning to get comparable figures across studies one has to estimate some of the different cost components for studies in which they are not published (this may be why only capital costs are presented for the cross-county comparisons).

Once you have the cost data adjusted as described above the methodology looks something like this:

i) define the parameters of the technology (lifespan, time until CapManEx is needed, software costs as a % of hardware costs (n.b. usually more for FSM), CapManEx costs, Operation costs)

ii) Choose a combination of technologies to form a sanitation chain.

iii) Set the parameters of the economic analysis (choose a discount rate (they use 5% with a range of 3-8% for the sensitivity analysis, socio-economic data (e.g. HH size), etc)

iv) Calculate the annualised cost of a particular technology combination.

As you note they only present the capital costs in this table, but it is not clear if these are annualised (i.e. take into account the lifespan) or not. Annex D of the paper show the cost studies used. the figures for Nepal must be somewhere in the papers cited there (if you really want to go digging).

I'd be interested to hear if you find anything!


Faecal sludge management Mon, 16 May 2016 09:14:49 +0000
Re: What should be done with faecal sludge with formaldehyde from portapotties? - by: Marijn Zandee
I hope things are improving post earthquake, and that you are not having too many aftershocks.

Regarding your question. Have you checked with the suppliers of the toilets, or on the packaging of the disinfectants, what is actually in them? It seems there are non-formaldihyde mixtures for these kinds of toilets these days. I would be surprised if aid organizations still use Formaldihyde based products, as it is commonly agreed to be very nasty stuff.

If you are sure that ground water is not an issues, deep trenches are probably a realistic solution to get rid of the sludge.


Faecal sludge management Sun, 15 May 2016 11:04:10 +0000