How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

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  • Elisabeth
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How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

This is a continuation of a thread started here where we discussed the definition of sanitation:  forum.susana.org/discussions-about-speci...le-accordingly#30031

Dear Hajo* and all,
I am wondering if there is any action that we can take to encourage more town planners dealing with drainage, as well as people in local authorities dealing with solid waste management to utilise this forum? They probably don't know about it, and perhaps have their own forums that we know nothing about? If anyone has ideas how we could reach out to those audiences, please let me know. 

I think it would be useful to keep a broad view of (sustainable) sanitation, i.e. not just excreta management and hygiene. Also it would help us with the interlinkages ideas that we have discussed before, e.g. solid waste management and FSM, see here .

Regards,
Elisabeth

* Hajo had written here :

The reasons for not discussing solid waste and drainage in this forum so much may be caused by the fact that very different stakeholders are concernd with these matters. As I indicated, a W&S utility is hardly ever in charge of solid waste collection and drainage. Especially drainage is a matter of road and settlement planners. Plots and roads should be designed such that plots and houses do not get flooded and roads must be planned such that they are  neither flooded, nor washed away nor constitute 'dams' retaining rain water unintentionally. In a town/city, the planning of roads and their drainage is very often under responsibility of the respective local authority, never under the W&S utility. And the same applies to solid waste management: it is mostly under the local authority, I cannot remember it being under a W&S utility. I don't mind it being included under sanitation, but we just do not discuss it because participants on the forum are more related to human excreta and waste water management by their own studies, experience and work environment. 

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  • Chaiwe
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Re: How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

Hello Elisabeth,

I think the participation of practitioners that are active in solid waste and drainage is dependant on their awareness of the broader definition of sanitation, and what contributions, interdependencies and connections exist between all aspects that fall under the umbrella term 'Sanitation'.

This is the definition in am referring to found on the Wikipedia:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sanitation :

"Sanitation generally refers to the provision of facilities and services for the safe disposal of human urine and feces. The word 'sanitation' also refers to the maintenance of hygienic conditions, through services such as garbage collection and wastewater disposal. 

I would also like to point you to a discussion that was started to try and bring out some of these connections in relation to Solid Waste Management and Faecal Sludge Management (responses that are targeted at improved 'Sanitation').   https://forum.susana.org/208-solid-waste-management/23116-connection-intersections-between-fsm-solid-waste-management#30288

Therefore, back to your question Elisabeth, the first step in getting more posts about drainage and solid waste lays in creating awareness and sharing experiences about the connections and interaction between the different constituents of  Sanitation.

Regards,
Chaiwe
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(Under consultancy contract with Skat Foundation funded by WSSCC)

Chaiwe Mushauko-Sanderse BSc. NRM, MPH
Independent consultant located in Lusaka, Zambia
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  • hajo
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Re: How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

dear all,

I propose that we create a new Forum category which aims at discussing the linkages between human excreta and SWM and drainage management, so that they are not 'hidden' under any other headers, but professionals who are mainly dealing with SWM and drainage see themselves represented in such category.

The first topic under this category may become the one which has been opened before 'Connection/ intersections between FSM & Solid Waste Management ?'. In this post it has already been indicated by Anthony that customers and service providers are always faced with this linkage between FSM and SWM and drainage but that responsible authorities (utilities, LGAs, financiers, consultants, ...) haven't managed yet to develop holistic approaches dealing with overlapping problems.

When I learned in Lusaka during a pit emptying exercise (described on the forum in different topics) that the emptying of latrine pits is mainly hampered by plastic bags in the pits, I proposed to the Lusaka City Council (LCC) to approach the Lusaka Sanitation Program (LSP) for some funds assisting to improve the LCC capacities for SWM, so that pit emptying could become more economically. It doesn't make sense to let solid waste (including plastic bags) being thrown into a latrine pit, retrieve it from there manually (no pumps can do it), clean it using tap (drinking) water from 'shit' and then dispose in the landfill. The steps of 'retrieving' and 'cleaning' can be saved if a workable SWM system exists.

The name for the new category could be simply 'SWM & drainage' with the subcategories 'SWM' and 'drainage'. Not only that we have then a dedicated place where to discuss common features but it may also attract attention by SWM and drainage professionals.

ciao
Hajo 
We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
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Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of a genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
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Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. :-)
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  • Elisabeth
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Re: How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

Hi Hajo,
I have moved the sub-sub-category of "solid waste management" up a level. Now it's a sub-category directly under "Sanitation systems". Before it was one level lower under "Various topics of sanitation systems".

However, I hesitate to call it "solid waste management and drainage" because I don't think the two are really related that much (apart from solid waste clogging up drainage channels).

Currently, any threads on drainage could be included here:  Sewer systems and stormwater drainage  
I think drainage is more likely to be interlinked with sewer systems. In the case of combined sewers it is even in the same pipes. Later, if we get a few posts on just stormwater drainage then it could be split off into its own sub-category (so far we have none). 

Is that sort of what you had in mind? I can't really elevate it further up because we already have 8 overarching categories and I think that's enough.

I think what we would have to do is to show up at conferences of SWM people and to pop up on their discussion forums and then mention to them that there is also the SuSanA discussion forum - a vibrant space where sanitation and SWM can be discussed together. We can't really expect them to come to "us" if we don't go to "them"?

Regards,
Elisabeth
Head moderator of this Discussion Forum
(under consultancy contract with Skat Foundation funded by WSSCC)

Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Independent consultant located in Brisbane, Australia
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Twitter: @EvMuench
Founder of WikiProject Sanitation: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Sanitation
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
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  • hajo
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Re: How to get more forum posts about drainage and solid waste issues (since they are also part of sanitation)?

Hi Elisabeth,

Is that sort of what you had in mind? I can't really elevate it further up because we already have 8 overarching categories and I think that's
enough.

I had described what I see necessary for attracting more drainage and SWM professionals discussing with us topics overlapping with FSM on this forum. Maybe at this point we should have some more opinions, not only yours and mine...  and why we cannot not have 9 or 10 overarching categories? Putting  Drainage and SWM at the top level of the forum, we make those practitioners aware that they are part of Sanitation.

ciao
Hajo
We can't solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.
Albert Einstein
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex... It takes a touch of a genius - and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.
E.F. Schumacher
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. :-)
Albert Einstein
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