Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

  • awhitesell
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  • Beaumont develops WASH technology. We managed the Fecal Sludge Omni-Ingestor project on behalf of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation between October 2011 and November 2015.
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Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi All, this topic is probably in the wrong forum and probably needs to be split into multiple topics but I trust Elisabeth to handle that if necessary.

I have started a new project and am looking for input from SuSanA members. I need to identify the following:

  • repositories of data and research related to human waste (sewage, septage, fecal sludge) and oceans (coastlines, reef, fisheries, marine habitats).
  • organizations doing research on the above. Examples include EAWAG, Plymouth Marine Laboratories, etc.
  • all waste management approaches/practices that relate to ocean contamination by human fecal waste. Examples include probably every form of FSM and WW treatment.
  • means of improving existing approaches to reduce contamination (for example: what modification can be made to a pit to prevent waste from reaching streams, rivers, or the ocean).
  • new approaches that might reduce contamination. This could include any wild idea.
  • tests and sensors for identifying and monitoring human waste contamination of oceans. For example, spectral imaging, visible light imaging, water sample tests.
  • sensor platforms for the sensors. This will include satellites, aircraft, drones, AUV, ships, handheld devices.

If you have suggestions about resources or interesting/wild ideas about tests/sensors, I would be happy to hear them.

I am also tasked with identifying organizations that would be interested in participating in the research (testing, modeling) and in developing technology (primarily sensors and testing methods). Let me know if that is of interest to you.

Cheers,

Andrew

Andrew Whitesell
President/Founder of Beaumont
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  • arno
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi Andrew
You might want to look at the work we have done at SEI within the Baltic Sea project Bonus Return.
www.bonusreturn.eu/what-ecotechnologies-...ematic-map-protocol/

Some 40,000 references were mapped relating to eco-technologies and practices for reuse of nutrients and carbon from wastewater and also within the agricultural sector.

When it comes to eutrophication of marine areas, point sources and diffuse sources usually need to be examined together in order make some sense of causes and effects.

Best wishes

Arno Rosemarin PhD
Stockholm Environment Institute
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www.sei.org
www.ecosanres.org
Current project affiliation: www.susana.org/en/resources/projects/details/127
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  • awhitesell
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  • Beaumont develops WASH technology. We managed the Fecal Sludge Omni-Ingestor project on behalf of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation between October 2011 and November 2015.
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi Arno,

Thank you for your suggestion - I referenced the Bonus Return site and some content in my report to my client.

Cheers,

Andrew

Andrew Whitesell
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  • annetempel
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi Andrew,
very interesting topic!
Is there anything from your research that you can already share on the Forum i.e. some good articles/data on wastewater/FSM impact on marine environments? Existing approaches to prevent contamination?

Would be curious to read more on this.

Best regards,
Anne

GIZ Sustainable Sanitation Programme
Division for Climate Change, Environment & Infrastructure



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  • AjitSeshadri
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  • Marine Chief Engineer by profession (1971- present) and at present Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, Chennai, India. Also proficient in giving Environmental solutions, Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Environment Consultant located at Chennai, India
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Dear Arno, Anne and Andrew.

Thanks for the discussion on this subject as detailed by Andrew.
I have been a sailing Mariner on merchant ships and have been following regulations for treatment and safe disposal of waste water and sewage incl solid waste.

IMO formulates the mechanism by MARPOL Rules and covered in detail by various Annexures 1 to 6.
Annex 4 deals with waster water incl.
sewage .
Annex 5 deals with garbage ie solid waste Etc.

Every facility is responsible for safe waste-disposal and liable for any deficient practice and total compliance is ensured done.

Similar strictures and safe guards need to be enforced for all waste producers, lest strict penal actions would be taken.

Well wishes.

Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, and
Environment Consultant (Water shed Mngmnt, WWT, WASH, others) Chennai, India
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  • awhitesell
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  • Beaumont develops WASH technology. We managed the Fecal Sludge Omni-Ingestor project on behalf of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation between October 2011 and November 2015.
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi Anne,

I will post a list of articles here in the next two weeks.

Regarding approaches to prevent contamination of oceans: As with most things related to sanitation appropriate approaches need to be acceptable, feasible, and viable. And of course, there is a spectrum of solutions, depending on the extent of the intervention. The gold standard would be to prevent human waste, treated or untreated, from reaching the oceans. The solution would also be sustainable. This implies that all the waste is reused so the solution really is a subset of ecosan practices that involves a few additional considerations. Those considerations mainly relate to preventing waste from leaching into soil and discharging any "treated water". Without getting deep into explanations, it boils down to the following:

1. Use of UDT's to maximize resource recovery at the lowest cost
2. Use of sealed containment to prevent leaching (in flood-prone areas the containment should be above ground)
3. Storing relatively small amounts of waste in flood-prone areas to minimize contamination should uncontrolled discharge occur
4. Quickly processing waste to minimize contamination should uncontrolled discharge occur
5. If appropriate, use urine for fertilizer
6. If appropriate, use solids for biogas generation / soil ammendment when safe
7. If possible, use advanced treatment to prevent endocrine disruptors, pharmaceuticals, and other compounds from being released
8. Reuse recovered water (locally) rather than discharging it

There isn't anything novel here -- it's just stricter with regards to the release of waste into the environment. The recommendations may not be realistic (for example, above ground storage will require pumps. Or, sealed tanks may not be available or affordable) but provide targets that stem from problems related to current practices (solids settle on reefs, hormones impact wildlife, pathogens can infect wildlife, and even freshwater discharge can impact ocean environments).

AW

Andrew Whitesell
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  • awhitesell
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  • Beaumont develops WASH technology. We managed the Fecal Sludge Omni-Ingestor project on behalf of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation between October 2011 and November 2015.
  • Posts: 46
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Hi Ajit,

You are certainly right that regulations and enforcement are necessary components of any sanitation solution (on-site to centralized). Unfortunately, those two items, especially in combination, are globally deficient. My sense is that enforcement in the maritime industry is quite lax - what do you think?

I'd like to note that while I'm a technology person, I personally don't think that protecting ocean environments demands an emphasis on technological solutions. There are satisfactory means of protecting oceans, it's really just a matter of access, policy, funding, enforcement, and behavior change. Improving access to good sanitation would reduce the impact of human waste on the ocean, without that being the primary goal.

Andrew Whitesell
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  • AjitSeshadri
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  • Marine Chief Engineer by profession (1971- present) and at present Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, Chennai, India. Also proficient in giving Environmental solutions, Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Environment Consultant located at Chennai, India
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Re: Fecal Sludge & Waste Water Impact on Marine Environments

Dear awhitesell
It appears in principle and practice, mariners at sea sailing in ships are more organised in managing- wastes ie solids, liquids and gases too.
Marine Industries that use the sea as a sink are varied, to name some as below:
Shipping, fishing and fish factory shps, oil/ gas/ mineral exploration, cruise shps, others.
All of them are guided by IMO Rules and to the extent personnel on board to are trained and periodically re skilled.
Even to the extent when there are events leading to pollution and effects, adequate safe guards are progressed..
Well wishes.

Prof. Ajit Seshadri, Senior Faculty in Marine Engg. Deptt. Vels University, and
Environment Consultant (Water shed Mngmnt, WWT, WASH, others) Chennai, India
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