Question Regarding the History and Inception of Pit Latrine Use and Sources of Information

  • anfrpr
  • anfrpr's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • Posts: 2
  • Likes received: 0

Question Regarding the History and Inception of Pit Latrine Use and Sources of Information

Hello all! I am currently enrolled in the University of Washington's Department of Global Health pursuing an MPH focusing on WASH and NTDs. Before enrolling, I spent a considerable amount of time working in rural areas of Sub-Saharan Africa, most recently in compost-based sanitation. This is my first post, and I hope I am abiding by the forum's rules.

I have a question regarding the history and inception of pit latrine use in Sub-Saharan Africa (and elsewhere). I faintly remember reading years ago that pit latrines were introduced by European missionaries. Although the missionaries used them on a semi-temporary basis, their use spread throughout the continent to become what it is today.

Can anyone corroborate that history? I would love to dive deep into the history of pit latrine use and would very much appreciate any sources of information that you might be able to share or point me towards. Thank you very much!
You need to login to reply
  • AKSantaCruz
  • AKSantaCruz's Avatar
  • Posts: 9
  • Likes received: 4

Re: Question Regarding the History and Inception of Pit Latrine Use and Sources of Information

Great research question. I can't speak for the whole of Africa, but I do beleive that the introduction of pit latrines can be traced to specific colonial polciies. If you're interested in compost sanitaton... please contact me and I can share our case studies spanning eight years of work in over nine countries.

Great project.

Program Director, GiveLove.org — EcoSan Training Program
You need to login to reply
  • arno
  • arno's Avatar
  • Senior Research Fellow Stockholm Environment Institute
  • Posts: 292
  • Karma: 19
  • Likes received: 160

Re: Question Regarding the History and Inception of Pit Latrine Use and Sources of Information

Thanks for this question.

A good reference is this paper:
Anne Nakagiri et al. 2016. Are pit latrines in urban areas of Sub-Saharan Africa performing? A review of usage, filling, insects and odour nuisances. BMC Public Health 16:120.
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4743102/

It covers the history back to the beginning of the 1900s
www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4743102/figure/Fig2/ .

Usage didn't really take off until the major WHO/Unicef campaigns of the late 1940s and the 1950s when simple pit latrines and pour flush toilets were being widely promoted.

Urban populations in SSA still using mainly pit latrines are mapped out here from the JMP work www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4743102/figure/Fig3/ showing this remains widespread.

Regards

Arno Rosemarin PhD
Stockholm Environment Institute
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.sei.org
www.ecosanres.org
Current project affiliation: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127
The following user(s) like this post: anfrpr
You need to login to reply
  • anfrpr
  • anfrpr's Avatar
    Topic Author
  • Posts: 2
  • Likes received: 0

Re: Question Regarding the History and Inception of Pit Latrine Use and Sources of Information

Thank you! The Nakagiri paper is a great starting point. Cheers!
You need to login to reply
Share this thread:
Recently active users. Who else has been active?
Time to create page: 0.719 seconds