SuSanA - Forum Kunena Site Syndication Sat, 04 Jul 2015 20:43:02 +0000 Kunena 1.6 SuSanA - Forum en-gb Re: Structured discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - Week 1 (24 June- 30 June) Different options for septage transfer stations - by: muench
Thanks for this summary, very useful!
Are you also copying the contents of the posts from the discussion forum back to your Dgroup readers? I think that would be useful. By the way, an easy way of doing so is the "save to pdf" function which we have for a thread (see blue button below this post; note that each page of a thread - if it goes over several pages - has to be saved individually; each page contains 10 posts).

Sorry for being sticky but the issue of definitions I find very important. For me it's OK to use fecal sludge and septage almost interchangeably but I disagree with including dry fecal matter into the definition of fecal sludge. You said:

For the purpose of this discussion on transfer stations, I suggest that we use the term septage and faecal sludge (or fecal sludge) interchangeably, understanding that we are talking about any pit/ tank contents.

Pit or tank is something that in my opinion is inherently wet and pumpable (for the pit, water might have to be added to make it pumpable). In my opinion fecal sludge is something wet - otherwise why would it be called "sludge"?

Therefore I am not in favor of including the example of Sanergy (who are using UDDTs) into the paper on fecal sludge transfer stations - unless it's made clear that this is an exception or anomaly to fecal sludge...

For the Ghana clean team toilets, maybe yes, if they don't use urine diversion and if they use that blue liquid (although I understand they have stopped with the blue liquid now, see here post by Andy Narracott on March:

I think if we lump everything together under the term of "fecal sludge" we are confusing the issues. This also relates to the big question of odor (see new thread on odor control by Duke University here: ).

The bottom line is that dry feces smell a lot less than wet feces. Fecal sludge in my opinion equates to wet feces. What do you and others think about my line of argument here?

Kind regards,
Faecal sludge transport Thu, 02 Jul 2015 09:47:02 +0000
Structured discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - Week 2 (1-7 July) Considerations for septage transfer stations - by: Antoinette Topic 2: General considerations for Septage Transfer Stations

Dear colleagues,

I hope that the first week of discussion on Septage Transfer Stations (or FS Transfer Stations if you want), created your interest to think more about this practical but essential element of city-wide FSM in many contexts. As I mentioned in the announcement, this second week of the discussion hopes to hear your ideas about the issues that should be considered to decide on STS or different options. The most important considerations when planning a transfer station are where to locate the transfer station and whether it will be mobile or fixed.

Of course we also still welcome more examples and if possible pictures of Septage Transfer Stations.

The second topic will run from today 1st of July till next Tuesday 7th of July, and we would like to hear your ideas and experience on any of the sub-topics below:
A. Siting a transfer station
B. Design considerations for fixed options
C. Operation and maintenance considerations
D. Financial considerations

While these considerations below are generic, we are keen to hear from you which considerations were taken into account in practice when constructing a transfer station:
1) Considerations for constructing a septage transfer station or not
2) Considerations for choosing a mobile septage transfer station and locations

Below a short introduction will be given to each of the sub-topics. You can contribute by replying directly to this message. For the benefit of other participants, please mention your name, organisation and country.

Looking forward to your ideas and contributions,


Regardless of whether the transfer station is permanent or mobile, the siting of the transfer station requires careful planning in order to optimise transport time and costs, maximizing the coverage area, and taking into account the needs of customers (size of their tanks, emptying frequency etc.). Accessibility and parking places for vehicles is also important, as well as acceptance and reducing nuisance for the neighbourhood.

A number of key technical considerations for septage transfer station are:
• Size and volume of the tank to match servicing requirements
• Health and safety of management, and possible spillage/ accidents.
• Ease of discharge access and emptying
• Safety for the public

In the case of fixed transfer stations, this is illustrated in the figure below. Fixed holding tanks can take various forms, from large plastic containers to more expensive concrete chambers, and can be located above or below ground. The structural components of a fixed facility must comply with all relevant municipal building codes. Of particular importance is to counter buoyancy forced in instances where the underground tank is located in an area with high ground water table.

Operation, maintenance and management of a transfer station can be undertaken by either public or private institutions. The roles and responsibilities would include the security of the facility from vandalism and illegal use, controlling access, maintaining the functionality of the facility and ensuring that the facility is maintained in an hygienic state. To avoid indiscriminate dumping of toxic waste in the facility, only registered emptying contractors should be permitted to use the facilities.

Regular maintenance activities would include:
• Cleaning of garbage screens to ensure a constant flow and prevent blockages, flies and odours The screenings should be stored in proper containers and transported to a designated landfill.
• Washing down and cleaning of the discharge chute.
• Cleaning of the general loading area to minimise odours, flies and other vectors from becoming public nuisances.
• Deal with compacted dry sludge at the bottom of the tank (in some cases).

Transfer stations are rarely operated as an independent financial entity, rather they are part of a bigger emptying, transfer and treatment service and need to make financial sense in that context. To develop the business case for a transfer station, costs[1] associated with the capital and ongoing operation and maintenance need to be considered, along with an analysis of potential cost recovery options.

P.S. I have some technical problems uploading the pictures. Will do that tomorrow.]]>
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 01 Jul 2015 21:51:02 +0000
Re: Structured discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - Week 1 (24 June- 30 June) Different options for septage transfer stations - by: Antoinette PRELIMINARY SUMMARY TOPIC 1: DIFFERENT OPTIONS FOR SEPTAGE TRANSFER STATIONS

Dear colleagues,
Yesterday was already the last day of the topic 1 discussion on Septage Transfer Stations. Between the Dgroup and the SuSanA forum there were contributions from 14 people, from 9 countries. Below a short summary of the discussion, we hope to integrate a better summary into the next version of the Septage Transfer Stations paper.

Definitions, sludge, faecal sludge, septage

Elisabeth Muench raised the issue of definitions, and whether we should be talking about faecal sludge or septage. There could be differences in water content and degree of stabilisation. Water content would also have an influence on how easy it is to pump out. I think this is important, but this discussion on definitions has been held on SuSanA before. Those interested can read that here:
For the purpose of this discussion on transfer stations, I suggest that we use the term septage and faecal sludge (or fecal sludge) interchangeably, understanding that we are talking about any pit/ tank contents.

What do you feel could be advantages and disadvantages of septage transfer stations in general?
Everybody is clear that distance, fuel costs and time lost in transport are important barriers for safe disposal, especially when small emptying& transport devices are used. In addition to the generic advantages mentioned in the introduction to this discussion, contributors from Bangladesh mentioned specifically the different degrees of accessibility for sludge emptying devices within one city. For example Shahidul Islam mentioned that in the recent Rapid Technical Assessment in Kustia, they found that 12% of households accessible for large vacutugs, 48% for medium sized vacutugs, 20% for small vacutugs and 20% of the households would not be accessible by any vehicle. Also the experience from Habibur Rahman from WSUP in Dhaka is that the slum roads are too narrow for a standard vacutug. Therefore small scale entrepreneurs are encouraged to use a gulper or mud pump and transport septage/ sludge to a transfer station with a tri-wheeler.
An additional advantage, mentioned by Julius Krichan Makowka from Philippines, is that a two-tier system could be easier to subsidise. The cost of transport from the transfer stations to the treatment site could be subsidized. However, Rahman mentioned the funding of that part of the transport as one of the issues still to be resolved.

In terms of disadvantages, first and foremost the Not In My Back Yard (NIMBY) issue was mentioned by almost everybody. Rajeev Munankami gave the example of the 8 planned transfer stations for solid waste in a city, of which due to popular opposition, only 4 had been built so far. Reza Patwary mentioned the issue of land availability specifically that in areas where you need transfer stations due to low accessibility, density is usually high and finding the land extra difficult. Rahman mentioned that even with transfer stations in place, there is still a challenge of ensuring the right incentives for small entrepreneurs to dispose the septage/FS in the right place. Lawrence Kimaru from Kenya, gave the example from Nakuru of modular transfer stations stationed in the area for one month. Also in the case of modular temporary transfer stations, a designated operator is considered necessary. Finally, FH Mughal from Pakistan asked whether Septage/FS would solidify in transfer stations under high temperatures. This would create a problem for emptying.

Nearly everybody agreed that due to high density constructions, low land availability and popular opposition against transfer stations in the own neighbourhood, it’s difficult to construct. Sahidul Islam suggested that for that reason, mobile transfer stations might be the best way to start an emptying routine. An alternative option and example given by Aftab Opel, is the use of sewer lifting stations as septage transfer stations. Opel gave the example from Dhaka. Of course this can only done at limited scale otherwise it will lead to blockages in the sewer. Florian Klingel however, spoke about the experience from Haiphong in Vietnam, and in his opinion, mobile septage transfer stations cause less odour and annoyance than solid waste transfer stations that are very common. Therefore he does not expect much popular opposition.

What is your experience with different Septage Transfer Station options?
Between the Dgroup and the SuSanA forum, the following examples were shared:

Habibur Rahman gave the example of a combined system of emptying by small scale entrepreneurs who empty inaccessible areas using small equipment (see above) and medium scale entrepreneurs who empty accessible places as well as the septage transfer stations where the small entrepreneurs dispose their loads. This example is in Mirpur, Bangladesh, in collaboration with DWASA. See below a picture of the transfer station.

Aftab Opel gave the example of the 11 sewer lifting stations in Dhaka that were used as septage transfer stations. He explained that this apparently straightforward solution required a lot of negotiations with many relevant agencies. This example is from the WaterAid/DSK programme in Dhaka a few years back.

Lawrence Kimaru gave the eample of the Nakuru County Sanitation Programme, where modular transfer stations (“Primary Collection Point”, PCP) is placed in an area for one month. The PCP consists of a removable tank with disposal latch and outlet. See below a picture. After a month, the PCP is transported to the treatment site by the utility, emptied and then placed in the next location.
Jonathan Parkinson from the UK shared three examples. The first one from Haiphong, Vietnam, is similar to the one mentioned by Lawrence and also managed by a public company (URENCO). See picture below.

The second example is from Sanergy, where a transfer station is part of the service chain (see drawing below).

The third example by Jonathan was from Ghana, which was already in the paper.

Jan Heeger gave an example of a temporary transfer station made out of flexible materials (“bladder”), used in Malawi. The bladder is equipped with a carbon filter to reduce smell. See picture below.

Pictures of different Septage Transfer Stations

This is my short summary of your inputs over the past week. We will also integrate this into the paper.
Kind regards,
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 01 Jul 2015 21:48:50 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: muench
So far, there were 5 responses on the Dgroup dicussion:


Sahidul Islam
June 30

Dear all,I am Engr. Sahidul Islam working in Fecal Sludge Management(FSM) Program with SNV in Bangladesh. We are working in three cities. One isbig another two are small town. Khulna is the big city. In Khulna, there willbe a fecal treatment plant which is twelve kilometer away from the center, butalmost twenty kilometer away from the northern and southern end. From the twoend points, FTP is too far. It needs more cost for fuel and number of trip willbe less. If there are secondary transfer stations (STS) in the city, fuel costwill be less and number of trip will be more. At present, in Khulna, there is no STS for FSM but for solidwaste recently been constructed. From the citizen, there is no call or complainto the corporation to address as like solid waste. So, the city authority isreluctant for the issue of FSM. There might be manysolutions for the STS like mobile tanker or constructed one. To get the landfor STS is a serious issue which Khulna City Corporation faced recently. Eventhey could not manage land for all the proposed STS sites. All the citizenswant STS, but not in front of his house or even his locality. As it is not managedproperly, so their attitude is negative. The case of STS for FSM is too worsethan solid waste. We had a discussion with Conservancy department of KCC. Thehead of this department is not convinced to make it beside of their STS forsolid waste. The operators of vacutug feel the urgency of STS in Khulnacity. At this moment, mobile big tanker can be solution for Khulna city. Later,we are hopeful that the city authority will be convinced and will construct at least twoSTS in Khulna.
Thanks and kind regards,
Engr.Md.Sahidul Islam | Advisor, WASH |

SNV Netherlands Development OrganisationH#345, R#2, Phase-2, Sonadanga R/A | Khulna-9100 | BangladeshM: +880 1712 124 330 E: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it | Skype: sahidul93 bangladesh


Aftab Opel
June 30

Dear members,

A brief input to kick off the discussion from Laos! I am Aftab Opel from SNV Laos.

We all know that cities and towns expand more rapidly than the services. Thus, septage transfer is probably a good way of managing the septage of the areas where there is no service coverage. This may also be a good alternative for the resource poor countries which find it difficult to expand sewerage coverage due to lack of fund.

If I take the example of Dhaka city where only less than 20% of the city is covered by sewerage network and only less than 30% capacity of the central treatment plant is utilised, I don’t see any better way to deal with the problem other than allowing/ arranging septage transfer from the uncovered areas. And this was initiated by the WaterAid/DSK programme in Dhaka few years ago. There are about 11 lifting stations in Dhaka, and the programme organise system to collect sludge from uncovered areas though vacu-tugs and dispose them in those lifting stations to run to the central treatment plant. Although this apparently nice programme had to do a lot of negotiations with a number of relevant (City corporations, Water and Sewerage Authority) and non-relevant (Traffic Department) government institutions to get the approval to transport septage from areas far away and dispose in the lifting stations but it has the potential to be an efficient septage management programme for a city like Dhaka.

I don’t see any disadvantage other than some obstacles for the vacuum trucks to move through heavy traffic but the model really has the potential to be an efficient private-public venture to manage septage in the urban areas if an enabling condition is facilitated.

With kind regards


Aftab Opel

Sector Leader
Water, Sanitation and Hygiene
SNV – Netherlands Development Organisation
Vientiane, Lao PDR


Rajeev Munankami
June 30

Dear All

This is Rajeev Munankami from SNV Bangladesh.

Conceptually STS sounds really superb idea for the cities where there are no sewerage network and less likely for some more years. As FSM is starting to get high priority from different stakeholders including Government and Development partners there are lots of interventions underway. Smaller vacutugs have been provided in order to serve the narrow alleys (primarily focussing on informal settlements) but as the treatment plant is constructed far from the city (if any) there is no incentive for the service providers to dispose in the designated sites. Hence most of the septage are disposed in the nearby water bodies. If some intermediary collection points (fixed or mobile) can be developed then we can ensure safe disposal of septage but management of it can be an issue but not impossible if all the stakeholders work together. Like Sahidul said, Faecal Sludge is yet not seen as an issue because most of the households connect their containment outlet to the (storm) drain and is not visible like solid waste on the roadside.

Specifically in growing cities land is very precious and has to compete for different purpose/use. In Khulna there is approved project for construction of 8 STS for solid waste but till date only 4 could be initiated due to unavailability of land (or rather because of Nimbies). During the process of construction we had requested to provide the underground space or nearby space for temporary holding of faecal sludge but it didn’t materialise.

We do have good experience in Dhaka where WSUP has been able to construct STS around an informal settlement. Our colleague from WSUP Bangladesh will be providing detail info about their initiative and experiences.


Rajeev Munankami
Senior Advisor/FSM Programme Leader
SNV Netherlands Development Organisation
M + 88 01729094702
Skype: rajeev.munankami2009


Shahidul Islam
June 30

Dear Colleagues

I am Shahidul Islam from SNV in Bangladesh. Here I am adding few more points to support in establishing Septage Transfer Stations (STS) for efficient collection and transportation of septage/ FS.

1. Buildings located in the narrow roads are inaccessible by the typical Vacutugs available in Bangladesh (1000 to 2000 litres) which require at least 7 feet road width (clearance). The baseline survey conducted by SNV in Khulna (2014) shows that 26% of the households have access road upto 6 feet width. This indicates that further smaller emptying devises (smaller Vacutug/ other emptying equipment) are required for these roads. In Kushtia town (250,000 population) we conducted a Rapid Technical Assessment (RTA) in one ward (there are nine wards). The assessment shows that 12% buildings have accessible roads by large Vacutug, 48% have accessible roads by medium Vacutug mounted on Tata Ace, 20% have accessible roads by smaller Vacutug mounted on three wheelers and 20% have roads too narrow for any vehicle. Here the larger Vacutugs can be used as transfer stations (mobile).

2. Designated site in Khulna is located 8 KM away from the nearest part and 15KM from the distant part. It is impractical to travel to the designated site by the smaller devises as it has an impact fuel, time, and traffic. Incentives/ enforcement will hardly work to ensure that FS is being disposed of into the designated site using the smaller ones (even the existing ones with 1000m3).

3. STS will help the emptiers to do the business in a site within shorter period of time where multiple trips are required (because of short trips). A standard septic tank requires 4-5 trips by the 1000 litre Vcutug. Hence service users will also require to spend less time for this purpose.

4. Most of the cities and larger towns in Bangladesh have primary collection system of solid/ kitchen waste. Local NGOs or small entrepreneurs have been doing this business quite successfully with their small investment. City Authorities do the secondary transfer. Establishing Septage Transfer Stations will encourage local small entrepreneurs, CBOs or local NGOs to do the primary collection of FS/ septage as business.

However I also recognize challenges where land is scare to establish STS, people do not agree to establish it next to their premises, proper O&M, high ground water table, etc.


Md. Shahidul Islam │ Governance Advisor - Bangladesh
SNV Netherlands Development Organisation
Programme Office: House 345│Road 2│Sonadanga R/A 2nd phase│Khulna│Bangladesh
Country Office: 55 Shahid Suhrawardi Avenue│ Baridhara | Dhaka 1212 | Bangladesh
T: +88 041 730789 │ M: +88 01713 036799 │ Skype: shahidul-khulna
E: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it <mailto: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it > │


Reza Patwary
June 30


This is Reza Patwary from SNV Bangladesh.

From the posits earlier, it is evident that there are few issues attached with the Establishment of a Septage Transfer Stations.

Informal Settlements: This is a classic case where even the 1000-litre vacutug, considered rather small to many, cannot navigate. Challenges are: these places are already in areas where land is limited either for the reason of erosion, constructed blockade and so on; and a service model of several feeder vacutugs to one larger vacutug is not also feasible because for serving those narrow alleys, new form of equipment / micro vacutug is necessary which can rather be mounted on a motor-bike or three wheeler. The existing locally manufactured vacutug in Bangladesh may not even support a long hose and stronger capacity of the engine would mean consumption of greater energy and higher cost - not financially feasible for the dwellers in informal settlements.

Distance from the Treatment Plant: This is one of those major issues that brings back the idea of establishing STS. And in a 'I' shaped city like Khulna, a treatment plant wherever it is located, could be advantageous to some areas and disadvantageous to many. With this respect, the service model of frequently moving feeder vacutugs and rather static large vacutug would perfectly work where larger vacutugs would be parked at certain points in the city at different times on different days to receive the sludge collected by the feeder / smaller vacutugs. This would significantly reduce the fuel cost.

Commissioning Land / Space for STS: If we consider open space, perhaps there are few and next to none available land for the STSs to be located in or around the cities, particularly in Bangladesh. In this case, commissioning design for using underground space of high-rise can be a good idea. When we say design option: we intend to cover the areas of management, occupational health and safety, parking and navigation, management and timing of operation, reduction of the odor etc.]]>
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 01 Jul 2015 10:10:27 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: jonpar Faecal sludge transport Mon, 29 Jun 2015 11:37:47 +0000 Re: Structured discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - Week 1 (24 June- 30 June) Different options for septage transfer stations - by: dorothee.spuhler
We have compiled some information, pictures and documents on the topic some years ago for the SSWM Toolbox and recently updated the factsheet when we merged the Compendium and the Toolbox for Sanitation Systems (eCompendium):

Would be great we could use the outcomes of this discussion and the collected documents to further built on these factsheets and maybe also start working on the wiki page with Elisabeth...

Maybe I missed this bit in the discussion: but are we planning for compiling a document on the key learning of this discussion for publication (e.g. factsheet)? I think this would be a valuable contribution to the sector!

Faecal sludge transport Fri, 26 Jun 2015 10:33:34 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: janheeger]]> Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 19:55:38 +0000 Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: jonpar
Many thanks

I didn't see the reference in the report, which states "In order to reach to the household in narrow and long alleys in the city, the project has made three 0.35 m3
-small tankers equipped with a small pump and storage volume. The tanker can be mounted behind a special truck, or, rolled manually. The small vacutug collects sludge from the HH(s) in the alley and discharge to an intermediate tanker of 10 m3 volume waiting on the main street.

So - not a lot of information, but the fact that they are mentioned suggests that the system is still in operation. We should endeavor to find out.

The photos appear to be the same ones that you included in the SANDEC report.

best regards,

Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 11:07:20 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: muench

I think that was a very interesting discussion.

Personally, myself, I am leaning more towards the term "faecal sludge" (or "fecal sludge" in American English).

Jonathan posted above a schematic by CleanTeam in Ghana and also mentioned Sanergy. In my opinion this is not "faecal sludge" though, it is faecal matter (dry). We also discussed this issue here in the thread about the FSM3 conference:

Back then Jonathan answered my concern like this:

I conferred with the programme committee and the we concluded that we welcome submissions related to management of sludge from UDDTs.

We will upload the following definition of faecal sludge to the website so that there is a clear understanding of the thematic scope.

"Faecal sludge (FS) comes from onsite sanitation technologies, and has not been transported through a sewer. It is raw or partially digested, a slurry or semisolid, and results from the collection, storage or treatment of combinations of excreta and blackwater, with or without greywater. Examples of onsite technologies include pit latrines, unsewered public ablution blocks, septic tanks, aqua privies, and dry toilets."

FS is therefore highly variable in terms of consistency, quantity, and concentration and FSM includes the storage, collection, transport, treatment and safe enduse or disposal of FS.

So when I hear "septage transfer station" I am thinking of something liquidy, not of something that gets collected from UDDTs of the type that Sanergy is using.
Is that wrong or right?
Does it help us to lump everything under the term of "faecal sludge" or septage, even though it is dry material?

The learning document that Antoinette had attached only seemed to consider pumpable options (see also schematic posted above in her post on 24 June).

For dry toilet systems, such a transfer station is anyway less of a necessity as the volumes are much lower (for urine, however, I could see the benefit of such a transfer station, i.e. intermediate urine storage tanks at street level).

And my last point: I think a key problem with such transfer stations will be odour. Therefore, it could be difficult to find suitable locations for them - there could be a "not in my backyard!" (NIMBY) mentality.

But this might be something for Week 2 or 3 of the discussion.


P.S. If someone has photos of septage transfer stations for which you own the copyright or where you know the copyright owner (and they can be contacted and asked), please send them to the secretariat for inclusion in the SuSanA flickr photo database and possible inclusion in Wikipedia articles later: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
For those who don't know: SuSanA has a huge (10,000 photos+) of open access photos available here:]]>
Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 09:10:58 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: muench
Thanks Antoinette, for leading and structuring this discussion! I look forward to a fruitful three weeks of this.

I have a question about the format: you said that:
This discussion will be running here on the Forum, on the Faecal sludge transport subg-category of the sanitation systems category, and in parallel also on the WASH Asia urban san Dgroup.

How will that work? I think it might work best if once a day the contributions from one group are copied to the other platform and vice versa (rather than waiting to bundle it at the end of the week). This way, the participants from one group can better interact with the other group. Is that how you envisaged it?

Secondly, I have a suggestion to make: How about we use the learnings and the three weeks to also update the Wikipedia content on "septage transfer stations"? I think this would be a great way to learn, to agree, and to share with other people in a concise format.

I had it on my to do list for a while to do up a page on "Fecal Sludge Management" on Wikipedia (well, actually I was hoping to work on this together with other people, not on my own). We could set it up so that the page "Septage transfer station" either has its own page or redirects to "Fecal Sludge Management"?
At the moment the term "Fecal sludge management" redirects to the closest page which is on "septage", but this page still needs quite a bit more work:

So anyhow, if those people who are taking part in this 3-week discussion have an interest in collaborating on this, I would be happy to facilitate the process. It would be a nice output of this structured discussion, wouldn'it?]]>
Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 09:00:22 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: Florian
the landscaping report does mention the vacuum tugs and transfer station (p 58/59) but it does not provide any addtional information to what I know and reported. So I'm not sure if this is current information or just quoting my older report. I don't think Viet Anh was involved in the development of the system at the time, but he certainly would know the current status or be able to find out without much difficulties.

Best, Florian]]>
Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 08:03:00 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: jonpar Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 07:50:07 +0000 Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: Florian
jonpar wrote:
Antoinette asks us to share your pictures of septage transfer stations.... this is not my photo .. it comes from a SANDEC report... (quite old now) but is relevant to the topic of discussion. Hopefully, someone who is familiar with this system can provide more information. Jonathan

The photo is from Haiphong where a mini-vacuum tug is used for desludging in narrow lanes and due to the small quantity of septage, it discharges into an intermediate-storage-tank placed in the nearest accessible road.

The system is operated by the Hai Phong Urban Environment Co., Ltd (Hai Phong Urenco) which is a public utility enterprise, is responsible for septage collection.

Collection is carried out with vacuum tankers and small vacuum tugs for areas difficult to access, used together with intermediate-storage-tanks mounted on a hook-lift truck. The mini-vacuum-tugs were developed by the company in collaboration with a local manufacturer. They have a capacity of 350 L and cost around $ 4,000 (about 20 years ago).

As I took these pictures in Hai Phong, some more on what I know about this example:
- I took the photos in 2001 (published here), and the equipment was quite new at the time, so its a bit less than 20 years old
- I have no information about the current situation, if this system is still being used. There is a BMGF landscape analyis from 2011 which covers Hai Phong, but it does not provide additional information on this system of mini tugs and transfer stations
- In the proposed systematic, the Hai Phong system would be a more simple version of category C: the transfer station is a large tank that is placed temporarily in the street and can be transported away by a hook-lift truck when full. The transfer stations are placed where currently needed, it's not a permanent installation.
- Alleys in Vietnam residental areas are typically very narrow, often 1 m or less. Emptying with conventional trucks is simply not possible in many locations
- Solid waste is collected in a similar fashion: daily collection with hand-pushed carts in the alleys, the carts are collected in transfer points in the larger streets, from where waste is then transported away with trucks. This is very widespread and common, and from the point of view of odor emission much worse than the septage transfer stations, which are sealed tanks. I'd expect no problems with acceptance of the transfer stations.

Best regards,
Faecal sludge transport Thu, 25 Jun 2015 07:10:37 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: jonpar


again these are not my photos - I am posting for the sake of stimulating discussion and I hope those who are involved with the Clean Team project will see these postings and give us more up-to-date and reliable information.]]>
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 24 Jun 2015 23:36:17 +0000
Re: Announcing the discussion on Septage Transfer Stations - by: jonpar
The use of transfer stations for faecal sludge management in Accra, Ghana

You can download the paper from :

I understand that Goal has established some transfer stations in Freetown - we will need to ask Niall or a colleague of his to provide us with more information.]]>
Faecal sludge transport Wed, 24 Jun 2015 23:28:15 +0000