Is there too much focus on ecosan in the SuSanA discussion forum?

  • ggalli
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Is there too much focus on ecosan in the SuSanA discussion forum?

Note by moderator (EvM): this post was originally in this thread: forum.susana.org/forum/categories/39-any...uch-ecosan-in-susana
It has been moved to this new thread in order to make it easier to follow this discussion.


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I have not been able to follow this discussion, too many back-and-forth-replies on what seems to me like technicalities. I think the topic of discussion should be broader.

For me it not necessarily an issue that there is too much ecosan on SuSanA, there is too little mention of other aspects. Let me explain: sustainability can be understood in a variety of dimensions. Most that discuss on this forum like to focus on technological sustainability (is the construction durable?), on financial sustainability (who will pay the construction and the running/maintaining costs?) and environmental sustainability (have all pathogens been killed?).
A few topics aside, there is little mention of institutional sustainability (e.g. who governs, regulates and enforces? how?), social sustainability (is the proposed technology/model suitable for all?) and on sustainability of the capacities/skills (do we have enough trained staff to operate, maintain and manage on the ground?)
And then there's also all the interlinkages between these.

I also think that discussions that are a bit broader than just one aspect of one technology model will allow for more user participation.

Giacomo Galli
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  • JKMakowka
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Re: Is there too much focus on ecosan in the SuSanA discussion forum?

sustainability of the capacities/skills (do we have enough trained staff to operate, maintain and manage on the ground?)


This is actually something very often overlooked, especially in a sector that is traditionally not seen as very aspirational and thus has a high staff turn-over.

Besides other issues, this might be a big reason why municipality run sanitation services have such a low-level of sustainability in many cases.

Microbiologist & emergency WASH specialist
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  • AquaVerde
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Re: Yes, there is a "problem" with EcoSan & sustainable sanitation - by maintaining our cosy niche status

"I also think that discussions that are a bit broader than just one aspect of one technology model will allow for more user participation."

-- Giacomo Galli
(in this thread: forum.susana.org/forum/categories/39-any...scussion-forum#10075 )

I guess there is much more to keep in mind while working in our niche … and while looking at the wider world.

"MORE!?" :
In this little world of "sustainable sanitation" forum, I have tried to interest others in this PERFORMANCE-based thinking which is part of Circular Economy (CE) in general, to come a bit out of the “niche" of our small group of basically circular-thinking water engineers, to join forces with others on a larger scale … but unfortunately without much response to my posts :(

- first, (with an overly long text ;-)) "TURNTOO" as a profitable business model for "Resource SECURING Sanitation Systems" (aka EcoSan = NASS (New Sanitation System)) forum.susana.org/forum/categories/62-wg-...-aka-ecosannass#3075
"TURNTOO" turntoo.com/en/about-turntoo/ (Thomas RAU and colleagues, a German Architect in NL) is an enabler (a key) for Circular Economy and therefore important for EcoSan/SuSanA too. This 23-minute video with Mr. RAU is a good starting point to understand this business-oriented approach for a Circular Economy:


- second, (with very short text :)) A great woman with a message to all of us: Ellen MacArthur - Learning & The Circular Economy, forum.susana.org/forum/categories/39-any...ircular-economy#4413

- third, putting CE in a much broader perspective: Prof. Harald WELZER: 1:49 video in English
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/39-any...n-a-perspective#8894

Years ago, when I was in a "dead corner" of thinking, our colleague Mr. Juergen EICHOLZ introduced me to this way of broader-minded thinking. But for at least 2 years I was still ignorant, so I can understand very well the niche-“ignorance” other water engineers ;-)

Best Regards,
Detlef

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