Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums - project re.source (Stanford University, USA and SOIL Haiti)

60.8k views

Page selection:
  • kcrussel
  • kcrussel's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I am an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon. I research water and sanitation solutions in resource-constrained environments. I am also the Chair of the Container Based Sanitation Alliance.
  • Posts: 18
  • Karma: 5
  • Likes received: 12

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Mr Mughal

There are ongoing hygiene promotion and education programs in the community. Likewise everyone who was using one of the toilets was trained on how to use them hygienically and to wash hands after each and every use. One of the advantages of a collection service is that the collectors can give feedback to user on a regular basis, which could ultimately be a good way to improve hygiene education programs and sustain behavior change.

I appreciate your interest in my dissertation and assure you that I will send you information when it is ready.
Thanks again.

All the Best,
Kory
Kory C. Russel
Assistant Professor | Landscape Architecture | Environmental Studies
College of Design | College of Arts and Sciences
University of Oregon

Chair of Container-Based Sanitation Alliance

korychristrussel.wixsite.com/mysite
on Twitter @korycrussel

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • kcrussel
  • kcrussel's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I am an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon. I research water and sanitation solutions in resource-constrained environments. I am also the Chair of the Container Based Sanitation Alliance.
  • Posts: 18
  • Karma: 5
  • Likes received: 12

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Christian

Our efforts do indeed have common themes with MoSan and Ghanasan. We have been in contact with both projects and we think there is a lot to be learned from comparing notes. A special shout out to both Andy Narracott at WSUP and Mona Mijthab at GIZ. I would also recommend you check out the great work X-Runner is doing in Peru (www.xrunner-venture.com/).

We are currently sifting through all the data collected during our research on our pilot. We hope to have a few publications ready in the near future that will give more complete information.

The toilets and service were received very positively. However, just because people like it does not necessarily ensure that it is a good idea, which is why we are being very careful to do rigorous research and evaluation of our toilet and service before scaling it up.

All the best,
Kory
Kory C. Russel
Assistant Professor | Landscape Architecture | Environmental Studies
College of Design | College of Arts and Sciences
University of Oregon

Chair of Container-Based Sanitation Alliance

korychristrussel.wixsite.com/mysite
on Twitter @korycrussel
The following user(s) like this post: christian.rieck

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • F H Mughal
  • F H Mughal's Avatar
  • Senior Water and Sanitation Engineer
  • Posts: 1026
  • Karma: 20
  • Likes received: 227

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Thanks, Ms. Elisabeth. The link is now working.

Regards,

F H Mughal
F H Mughal (Mr.)
Karachi, Pakistan

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • Elisabeth
  • Elisabeth's Avatar
  • Moderator
  • Freelance consultant since 2012 (former roles: program manager at GIZ and SuSanA secretariat, lecturer, process engineer for wastewater treatment plants)
  • Posts: 3372
  • Karma: 54
  • Likes received: 929

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Mughal,

I have now corrected the link in Christian's post above.
Here it is again:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/52-mob...-mosan-toilet-design

Regards,
Elisabeth
Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
Freelance consultant on environmental and climate projects
Located in Ulm, Germany
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
My Wikipedia user profile: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:EMsmile
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/elisabethvonmuench/

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • F H Mughal
  • F H Mughal's Avatar
  • Senior Water and Sanitation Engineer
  • Posts: 1026
  • Karma: 20
  • Likes received: 227

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Mr. Christian,

The link is not working; and, probably, is not in English. Can you help?

Regards,

F H Mughal
F H Mughal (Mr.)
Karachi, Pakistan

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • F H Mughal
  • F H Mughal's Avatar
  • Senior Water and Sanitation Engineer
  • Posts: 1026
  • Karma: 20
  • Likes received: 227

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Mr. Kory,

Thanks a lot for your detailed, impressive response, which you have put in with high clarity. I appreciate.

As I understand, your research is specific to the Haiti situation. I'm sure, you must be putting in some sort of hygiene promotion and education programs, for the overal health improvements of Haiti slums; along with a M&E (monitoring and evaluation) component, to assess the percentage of use of your product across the slums in Haiti.

While your current research is Haiti-specific, if your advisor allows you, please develop one for rural areas -- non-mobile ofcourse. Don't forget to send me your dissertation (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), once it is done. I would love to look at your research work. Good luck in your doctoral studies!

Thanks again and kind regards,

F H Mughal
F H Mughal (Mr.)
Karachi, Pakistan

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • kcrussel
  • kcrussel's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I am an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon. I research water and sanitation solutions in resource-constrained environments. I am also the Chair of the Container Based Sanitation Alliance.
  • Posts: 18
  • Karma: 5
  • Likes received: 12

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Mr. Mughal,

Thank you so much for question; it is a very important one. The choice to pursue mobility over permanence was a product of the constantly changing population with in slums. You noted very accurately that slums themselves are not on the move and in many cases are likely to persist for decades if not longer. This is the case in the areas we have been working in as well. While I cannot speak for urban slums in Pakistan or Manila; the populations living within the communities we have been working with in Haiti are very mobile, even if the actual structures are not. This creates a resistance to investment in permanent sanitation infrastructure for several reasons.

• Many slums are informal settlements and there are no land/property rights. That means owners of homes are constantly under the threat of the City, Provincial or Federal government declaring eminent domain and relocating parts or the entire population.

• In our context about 50% of the population are renters. This means they are at the mercy of landlords who are not looking out for their best interests. They may be evicted from their homes for any number of reasons at a moments notice with no legal recourse. If they invest in permanent sanitation infrastructure the landlord may demand higher rent or kick them out and rent it to someone who can pay more.

• Many times the local authorities are unwilling to invest in more permanent infrastructure because it legitimizes settlements that in most cases have not followed any type of systematic planning or city codes. Politically speaking slums are very difficult areas to start addressing from the governments perspective and so they often choose to ignore them. From a political standpoint they cannot afford to do anything with informal slums and from a public health standpoint they cannot afford not to do anything.

• Space was a major concern. Many times people do not have the space to put up permanent infrastructure. However, having a toilet that can slide into a corner or under something allows them to take the toilet out and use it when it is necessary and hide it when it is not in use.

• Cost is another major driver. We know we can produce toilets that cost less than $75 USD even before we have leveraged economies of scale. Our business model is that of a subscription based service. Much like a cell phone contract, you get the hardware at a greatly reduced price because the cost of the hardware is spread across the monthly fee. This means lower entry cost barriers. Permanent infrastructure often cost between $200USD - $700USD depending on the context and how well it is constructed. If you have invested a large sum of money and then are forced to move that is a significant loss.

• A non-mobile solution can potentially lock in a sub-optimal solution. We don't want to lock people into infrastructure when a significant upgrade may be available in the relatively near future. The planning horizon for permanent infrastructure is several years, while our toilets and service are much more dynamic.

If the above conditions change and there is less resistance to permanent infrastructure our toilet can be integrated into more permanent structures. Our toilets do include ventilation and are sealed to prevent access by vectors, but still preserve mobility.

We do not believe that our product and business model would necessarily be an appropriate solution for rural areas, which would require collection over a large area with fewer households, which could significantly increase the service costs. While there are situations that it may be appropriate, we believe that our work is most applicable to dense, urban slums.
Thank you again for your interest.
All the best,
Kory
Kory C. Russel
Assistant Professor | Landscape Architecture | Environmental Studies
College of Design | College of Arts and Sciences
University of Oregon

Chair of Container-Based Sanitation Alliance

korychristrussel.wixsite.com/mysite
on Twitter @korycrussel
The following user(s) like this post: Mona, Vanden, Kevinkuhn

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • christian.rieck
  • christian.rieck's Avatar
  • Moderator
  • Posts: 118
  • Karma: 7
  • Likes received: 40

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Kory,

your approach reminds me about the MoSan or Ghanasan Projects. You can check out e.g. this thread on this discussion forum:
forum.susana.org/forum/categories/52-mob...-mosan-toilet-design

It would be great to learn more about your project and how people in the target areas have reacted to the services. I personally think that renting out the toilets and services is a good and more affordable service to dwellers than expensive up-front investments into permanent structures which also do not provide the service of safe waste management.

Cheers
Christian
GIZ Uganda
Enhanced Water Security and Sanitation (ENWASS)
Sanitation for Millions
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • F H Mughal
  • F H Mughal's Avatar
  • Senior Water and Sanitation Engineer
  • Posts: 1026
  • Karma: 20
  • Likes received: 227

Re: re.source: Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums

Dear Kory,

What were the reasons that motivated you (or forced you) to go for mobile toilets? Why not non-mobile toilets. Populations in urban slums are not, always, on the move. Here in Karachi, Pakistan, and probably in Manila, urban slums are there for the last many decades.

While mobile toilets are OK, I suggest, if there are no constraints, develop cost-effective, well-ventilated, mosquito-free non-mobile toilets. Their use will not only be restricted to urban slums, rural populations may also find it useful.

Good luck

F H Mughal
Karachi, Pakistan
F H Mughal (Mr.)
Karachi, Pakistan

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
  • kcrussel
  • kcrussel's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • I am an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon. I research water and sanitation solutions in resource-constrained environments. I am also the Chair of the Container Based Sanitation Alliance.
  • Posts: 18
  • Karma: 5
  • Likes received: 12

Mobile Sanitation Services for Dense Urban Slums - project re.source (Stanford University, USA and SOIL Haiti)

We are a group grown out of Stanford University funded by a GCE grant from the Gates Foundation. We aim to develop a low-cost sanitation service for the one billion (and growing) people living in urban slums. We seek to perfect the hardware and service model for this service in order to facilitate entrepreneurial franchises around the world. Our first pilot was in Shada, a community in Cap-Haitien, Haiti, in close collaboration with our friends at SOIL.

Lead contacts: Kory Russel and Sebastien Tilmans, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We are developing a portable, low-cost household toilet and entrepreneurial service model to deliver a safe, dignified sanitation service in urban slums. We piloted a container-based system in Shada, a slum that has no sewers and no piped water supply. Our toilet is portable, with removable containers to collect and transport wastes safely from the community. Waste is being processed at SOIL's human waste composting facilities, generating fertilizer to improve Haiti's devastated soil resources. Our strategy is to enable local entrepreneurs to recover energy, nutrients, and material from the waste in order to subsidize the cost of the sanitation system, reduce user fees, earn a livelihood, improve the environment and boost agricultural productivity.

Since our toilets are portable, users do not need to make a large up-front payment to use our service. They subscribe for a small monthly fee, and receive the toilet as part of the service. If they terminate the service or are evicted without the option of continuing service elsewhere, they can return the toilet at no penalty.


Objectives / Activities / Key Components:
1. Design a modern, portable, affordable, and stylish container-based toilet that will appeal to urban customers who otherwise aspire to a flush toilet.

2. Develop business tools to foster the growth of sanitation service businesses around the toilets.

3. Pilot both the toilet and service in a rigorous, research based trial .

4. Integrate mobile waste tracking technology into the service to monitor performance, maximize efficiency, and minimize service costs.

5. Convert all collected waste into useful and valuable end products.

6. Produce rigorous research and business assessment tools to test and improve container-based systems ensuring that they can scale while protecting and satisfying their users.


Current state of affairs:
We designed and tested several generations of toilet models with users in Shada over 9 months.

We deployed the latest model in 132 households to conduct a successful 3-month service pilot.

We completed a rigorous baseline and follow-up survey to assess pilot performance.

SOIL is now working with local CBOs and entrepreneurs to transfer operation of the service to them and implement mobile-payment based fee collection.

We are now studying the performance of the pilot in order to assess its success, and applicability of this service in other contexts.


Main challenges / frustration:
Collecting small user fees from households carries high transaction costs. We are working to circumvent these costs by using mobile payments. Our biggest costs are waste transport and waste processing. We are eager to engage with new technologies and practices to reduce these.

Project start and end date:
We specifically began working in Haiti in late 2011 however SOIL has been working in Cap Haitien since 2006. The pilot phase of this project began in October 2012 and ran through February 2013. The intensive research phase has been completed, but the service is ongoing and efforts are being made to take the service to scale. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation GCE Phase 1 Grant period ends June 15, 2013.


Links to learn more or follow this project:

www.resourcesanitation.com
water.stanford.edu/resource
Follow the team on twitter: @resource_ful
Befriend the team on facebook: re.source
Learn more about our friends at SOIL: www.oursoil.org, @SOILHaiti
Kory C. Russel
Assistant Professor | Landscape Architecture | Environmental Studies
College of Design | College of Arts and Sciences
University of Oregon

Chair of Container-Based Sanitation Alliance

korychristrussel.wixsite.com/mysite
on Twitter @korycrussel
The following user(s) like this post: cecile, Mona

Please Log in to join the conversation.

You need to login to reply
Page selection:
Share this thread:
Recently active users. Who else has been active?
Time to create page: 0.347 seconds
Powered by Kunena Forum