Toilet Business Cluster is just being formed in Mongolia - UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

  • oyunlt
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A new book on toilet in Mongolian

Local Solutions Foundation, an Ulaanbaatar based NGO is releasing a new book "Let's Change Our Toilets" written by Oyungerel Tsedevdamba on World Toilet Day. The book will contain 32 topics including: 15 topics on toilet technological solutions, 10 topics on sludge management solutions and innovations, and 7 topics on policies and best community practices. The well illustrated book will be sold in all provinces of Mongolia and aims to offer Mongolians to learn about many sustainable solutions 'harvested' from FSM-4, SuSana website and other open source information. Written in the author's signature style of story-telling, Oyungerel's book also aims to stop the stigma attached to the word 'toilet'' and popularize the subject with a new business meaning. Local Solutions Foundation aims to conduct a year-around training on the book subject in all provinces and the capital city of Mongolia.

Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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  • oyunlt
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Re: Community engagement for Changing Toilets

Dear Sanitation friends,

I spoke at the Reinvented Toilet Expo on November 06, 2018 as a speaker in "Sanitation Change-Maker Speakers' Series".
Those who attended the Expo, co-organized by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Government of China, might find this video already familiar.

I am happy to share this link from the Gates Foundation's Youtube channel for those who are interested in hearing how we are trying to engage public in investing into the better healthier and environmentally friendly toilets.


Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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  • oyunlt
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Re: Community engagement for Changing Toilets

Here is another video with my speech on toilet:

Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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  • oyunlt
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Re: Toilet Business Cluster is just being formed in Mongolia

Just a year ago, Local Solutions ( an Ulaanbaatar based NGO) was the only member of the campaign "Let's Change Our Toilets". We produced a book with the same title. We traveled all over Mongolia to educate people. We created a fun and science-based curriculum to help people overcome a prejudice against the word "jorlon", toilet in Mongolian.

Twenty-two months after Local Solutions launched its nationwide campaign, "Let's Change Our Toilets", we have now turned into a modest member of a large and dynamic family of business entities , self-employed individuals, and a cooperative that work collaboratively to change Mongolia's dangerous and dirty, soil polluting pit toilets.

This new family is Mongolia's first toilet business cluster! Since its initial business operation, i.e. sale of the first dry toilet, only a month and a half has passed. But we have sold 50 units to date, which marks a success worthy to share with all of you.

At this moment, the worst seems to be behind. We were afraid that it would take a long time for Mongolians to accept the dry toilet as something that can be installed at home.

Today we have dry toilets installed inside homes, adjacent to houses and in separate cabins. The customers include city residents, organizations, tourist camps, and nomadic herder families.

Taboo against dry toilets has been successfully broken on the marketplace thanks to our energetic team members including Mini Solutions Cooperative (a network of salespersons and service providers equipped with a Facebook based phone app). vendors (TJNR company, UNIT company and private artisans), bond and loan providers (Ulaanbaatar Asset Mangement Compnay and Capitron Bank of Mongolia) and of course, the dedicated volunteers of Local Solutions.

More news to come in the months ahead...
For those who knows Mongolian: Our news is available on FB and Twitter. Use #ЖорлонгооӨөрчилье

Some of our developments are posted at www.jorlon.org , but our small crew often can't catch up with the developments and changes and I apologize for slow updates on our website.

Thank you for reading my post till the end.

Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Chair of Board, Local Solutions

Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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Re: Toilet Business Cluster is just being formed in Mongolia

Very interesting, thanks for this update from Mongolia. I was wondering what kind of dry toilet you are selling but found the answer here on your website:
www.jorlon.org/technology

Therefore, our team brought together several companies to choose a lightweight dry toilet model for women workforce so that the supply of toilets could significantly increase. Business partners of our campaign “Let’s Change Our Toilet” chose Biolan Simplett as the first product to test in the Mongolian market. It’s a dry bio toilet that can be installed indoors, and most importantly, this is a toilet that women can assemble, dismantle, clean, manage and sell them successfully.

-Biolan Simplett. Urine diverting dry toilet.
-Probiotic bacteria product TAMIR;
-Biodegradable bags
-Locally available biomass
-Collecting trucks and composting factory;
- decentralized composting in yards and Biolan Composters;
- urine harvesting for fertilizer;
- An app for toilet product salespersons and users;


Regards,
Elisabeth

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Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
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  • oyunlt
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Re: UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

This is Local Solutions another update on our ongoing toilet changing campaign.

This time, our team, "Let's Change Our Toilets", tested Biolan Simplett (UDDT) in six local festivals including: Horse racing area of the National Naadam in Ulaanbaatar (serving 1K visitors), Bayankhongor province naadam (serving 4K), Gobi regional naadam (serving 8K), Khuvsgul regional horse racing naadam (serving 8K), Khuvsgul local small naadam(Serving 2K), an event in Zavkhan province (1K visitors) and Xuur Music Festival (serving 30K visitors). Local users are very satisfied with their experience of using comfortable dry toilets.

To make it easy to transport, erect and dismantle, all accessories and additional components to the toilets were locally pre-made from locally available materials. To control the crowd, male urinal places were separately erected under the address "See a horse"-- a folk expression of urinating while standing.

Cleaning and maintenance volunteers were trained before each event, and cleaning experiences were excellent except for very few. I myself cleaned and adjusted the toilets too, and it took very small amount of time to manage the waste. We thank bio degradable bags for making our cleaning experience super easy. The only tricky experience was too much rain during one of our event days and our urine management was challenging. Please look at some of our event toilets photos in the attachment.

Now our team is working on developing checklists, budget sample, and instructions for event toilet managers.












Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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Re: UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

Hi Oyungerel,

Thanks for this post (I have moved it into the existing thread to make it easier to understand the context). My questions and comments:
- Your photos look really interesting. Seems like only the ladies had to queue up though, not the men?
- Could you please show us also a photo of the Biolan Simplett pedestal or pan up close? So far I have only seen the cubicles from the outside.
- What did you do with the collected feces and urine? What's in the plastic bags in the first photo, is that the content of a toilet bucket, i.e. faeces and toilet paper?
- Were your toilets the only choice the visitors to the festival had or were yours an add-on, together with the more conventional toilets?
- Who paid whom? I assume the festival organisers paid you for providing this toilet service. Was it more or less expensive for them than conventional toilet (like those chemical toilets)?
- The users were OK with just having curtains for privacy, no doors? (for the urinals it's easy but for the toilets?)

Please do tell us more! :-)

Regards,
Elisabeth

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  • oyunlt
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Re: UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

Elisabeth, Thank you for all these questions. Please find my answers below:
Q: Your photos look really interesting. Seems like only the ladies had to queue up though, not the men?
A: We separately placed men's urinals. Men used the seating toilets in the blue tent only if they needed to poo. The men's urinals in our pictures are shown as a row of white curtains with hay bales inside. In some occasions, we used male urinals behind those white curtains.

Q: Could you please show us also a photo of the Biolan Simplett pedestal or pan up close? So far I have only seen the cubicles from the outside.
A: I am attaching them here.

Q: What did you do with the collected feces and urine? What's in the plastic bags in the first photo, is that the content of a toilet bucket, i.e. faeces and toilet paper?
A: So far, we are not collecting urine. Instead, urine is going to a grey water treatment system, or directly to ground through 40cm layer of sawdust, or to a infrastructure pipe (if collected in a container). As to faeces, an Ulaanbaatar based company TJN Recycling is collecting bio degradable bags full of solid waste every 2 weeks from Biolan Simplett users and it is using the collected waste as a material to do compost for forestation. In other towns and countryside, faeces with bio degradable bags are buried in a hole that is located away from water sources. Bags in our photos are bio degradable bags. We chose to use such bags to make it easy to clean the dry toilet. It takes 10-30 seconds to collect the bag when it is filled.

Q: Were your toilets the only choice the visitors to the festival had or were yours an add-on, together with the more conventional toilets?
A: Our toilets were one of three choices of available toilets at the festival. The other two choices were water closets connected to city infrastructure, and mobile empty-able plastic toilets. But our toilets were most popular among the participants because they were much cleaner. We had many volunteers to clean the toilets much more often. With lots of instructions how to use the toilets, minimal cleaning was needed.

Q; Who paid whom? I assume the festival organizers paid you for providing this toilet service. Was it more or less expensive for them than conventional toilet (like those chemical toilets)?
A: Festival organizers paid to Mini Solutions cooperative. However, it wasn't enough to run the toilets, so Local Solutions sponsored half of the expenses to reach youth via this festival. Our toilets were offered for free to the users, while the other two toilets were offered at 300 tugriks (12 cents).

Q: The users were OK with just having curtains for privacy, no doors? (for the urinals it's easy but for the toilets?)
A: Tend curtain doors had locking buttons. So, most users used the 'locks' while some users didn't use the locking. Users were actually much happier to use curtain doors than wooden doors in traditional toilets. Tent-style curtain doors and tents themselves created cozy environment and users thanked with thumbs up very often.

Oyungerel Tsedevdamba
Leading a movement "Let's Change Our Toilets" in Mongolia.
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Re: UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

Dear Oyungerel,

Thanks for your detailed answers, much appreciated. This all sounds very good!

You wrote:

As to faeces, an Ulaanbaatar based company TJN Recycling is collecting bio degradable bags full of solid waste every 2 weeks from Biolan Simplett users and it is using the collected waste as a material to do compost for forestation.


Could you tell us more information about their business model, or encourage them to post here on the forum? Would love to know more about how they are making this work in practical and financial terms.

Thanks,
Elisabeth

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Re: UDDTs for public events in Mongolia

My questions about the company TJN Recycling in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia who does the composting from UDDTs was answered by Ariguun (director of TJNR company) via e-mail as follows:

+++++++++++++++

Our advantage is that we already have organic waste sanitation and processing product. It is a bacterial fluid named “Tamir bio”. We tested in June and started producing our own bedding materials for customers beginning at September. Our bedding materials had success among our customers, and we are hoping it will be used not only with Biolan, but also with the traditional open-pit toilets.

What is our goal? We are aspiring to construct self-sustainable business. It may not be profitable today. But our operation will grow with each sold Biolan waterless toilet and with each bedding material we sell. As you can see, our operation spans two companies and three products, which aid each others’ sales and operations. Companies in question are TJN Recycling and TJN. TJN is responsible for all the production, while TJN Recycling is responsible for sales and service operations.

What do we do? TJN Recycling gathers solid waste each fortnight from our Biolan waterless toilet users/customers. Right now, out of 50 homes that use Biolan waterless toilet in Ulaanbaatar city, we have only 3-4 homes that volunteered for the gathering services. Therefore service job load is low. But all of our team is participating to keep our service stable.

What we do with the waste?: As you may know, Biolan toilet separates fluid from soild waste. It serves good for composting purposes. We gather soild waste in special container and take them into the TJN processing site, which is located at the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar city. Solid waste is processed using our Tamir bio product for 4 to 9 weeks depending on weather conditions and amount of bedding material used. Our composting test started in August. Solid waste is being added to the composter and first of our compost had been emptied. The compost will be used for tree-planting and gardening etc,. This is a short description of the process.

TJN has experience with composting, and had been composting with animal waste since 2011. This composting process is quite simple, doesn’t require any elaborate machinery and takes less time for the product to fully compost - about 4 to 6 weeks.

However, there are not enough material for human waste composting to become self-sustainable right now. Our estimation is that 1 kilogram of fully composted product, we will sell at 1000 MNT (0.4 USD), same as animal waste compost. We are saving on our operations and it helps that our production site produces other ingredients for composting.

But for composting business to become sustainable (granted that compost sales will remain constant), we need at least 200 tons of solid waste per year. For now, we will have to wait until Biolan waterless toilet becomes active usage for at least 2’000 homes in Ulaanbaatar and for each of them to provide us with at least 5kg of raw material each fortnight with schedule. This is an achievable goal. And we also hope to succeed in building the active business by end of 2020. Above numbers are an approximation. But I hope they build the picture.

Other opportunities? We are hoping Gobi desert forestation project will pick up pace. But we cannot rely on hopes right now. Therefore we will aim at Ulaanbaatar city as our main market.

At some point, we will improve our product further and compress our compost into tablets for easier transportation and use. But this is not on our immediate agenda. Also, alternatively, we could add animal waste to fill the product, but we have not discussed such opportunities yet.

+++++++++++

Regards,
Elisabeth

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Dr. Elisabeth von Muench
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