Community Sanitation programmes mainly focus on construction of toilets. This in itself is a major achievement for many rural and urban areas in south Asian region countries such as India and Bangladesh. However, though, the mode of contamination from feces above the ground is stopped, the contamination route persists below the ground. Also proper design of on-site sanitation structures is also not paid much attention. The maintenance of these systems, desludging of tanks and waste water disposal is also not considered much. As a result, public health problems continue to happen. The magnitude of risk from such contamination to groundwater from on-site sanitation structures is very high in dense south Asian settlements with local drinking water sources based on groundwater. Since there is almost nil treatment of such local groundwater sources, the possibility of this contamination providing a linkage to causing epidemics is huge. To avoid these issues, the minimization of groundwater contamination risk needs to be thought about right at the initial stage of planning. What will be important here is design, siting and maintenance of these On-site Sanitation Structures (OSS) and larger systems such as septage management services which need to be in place.
Case Studies
News and Events
In India, the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute (NEERI) conducted studies in two cities – Indore and Kolkata which have very different geological settings and found highly different risk of contamination from on-site sanitation in these two cities. More
The IWA accounces a meeting for this community of practitioners interested in Sanitation and Groundwater Contamination. This is a webinar and can be attended by all interested persons online.
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