Media links for Sanitation articles:
What does “Sanitation” really mean?
• personal hygiene and products related to it, eg: Sanitary napkins etc
The MDG goals related to Sanitation:
The MDG target on access to water and sanitation aims for a 50% reduction in the lack of access to improved water sources and improved sanitation facilities by 2015. Achieving these targets would undoubtedly represent a great success but would still leave 672 million people without access to “improved” water sources and 1.7 billion people without access to sanitation in 2015.
- Till 2015, worldwide 2.1 billion people have gained access to improved sanitation. (Ref: The Millennium Development Goals Report, 2015, UNDP)
- Globally, 147 countries have met the MDG drinking water target, 95 countries have met the MDG sanitation target and 77 countries have met both.
Why should we focus on Sanitation?
The discharge of untreated waste-water and excreta into the environment affects human health by several routes:
• By polluting drinking water;
• Entry into the food chain, for example via fruits, vegetables or fish and shellfish;
• Bathing, recreational and other contact with contaminated waters;
• By providing breeding sites for flies and insects that spread diseases;
Poor sanitation gives many infections the ideal opportunity to spread: plenty of waste and excreta for the flies to breed on, and unsafe water to drink, wash with or swim in.
- Infectious diseases like cholera, typhoid, hepatitis, polio, many worm infections (the majority of the illness in the world is caused by fecal matter)
- Heavy metals
- Toxic organic and inorganic substances
- Nutrients: eutrophication-> algae toxins
- Loss in biodiversity
- Money spent on improving sanitation generates economic benefits (about nine times) that far exceed the required sanitation investments
How serious is the problem of Sanitation?
- About 2.5 billion people, including almost one billion children, live without even basic sanitation. Every 20 seconds, a child dies as a result of poor sanitation. That’s 1.5 million preventable deaths each year. (Source: Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council)
- Four out of ten people around the world have no access to improved sanitation. They are obliged to defecate in the open or use unsanitary facilities, with a serious risk of exposure to sanitation-related diseases (Ref: WHO and UNICEF 2006)
- WHO (2004) estimates that about 1.8 million people die annually from diarrhoeal diseases where 90% are children under five, mostly in developing countries.
Indian situation related to Sanitation:
Some salient findings of the survey regarding drinking water, sanitation, hygiene and housing condition in India during 2012 are as follows: (Ref: Government of India Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation National Sample Survey Office, 2012)
• About 88.5 percent households in rural India had improved source of drinking water while the corresponding figure was 95.3 percent in urban India.
• Among rural households, 85.8 percent had sufficient drinking water and for urban India the corresponding figure was 89.6 percent.
• Percentage of households who got drinking water facilities within premises was 46.1 percent in rural India and 76.8 percent in urban India.
• About 62.3 percent of rural households and 16.7 percent of urban households did not have any bathroom facility. Only 32% of rural households in India have their own toilets and than half of Indian households have a toilet at home (Approximately 130m households lack toilets).
• According to the Indian government’s 2011 census, 53.1 percent of all Indian households and 69.3 percent of rural households do not use any kind of toilet or latrine. India continues to be the country with the highest number of people (597 million people) practising open defecation. Despite having some of the highest numbers of open defecators, India does not feature among those countries making the greatest strides in reducing open defecation (WHO, 2014).
• Among the households having latrine facilities, 31.9 percent and 63.9 percent households in rural India and urban India respectively had access to its exclusive use.
• About 38.8 percent and 89.6 percent households in rural and urban India respectively had access to ‘improved’ type of latrine.
- As per the 2011 census, there is no drainage facility in 48.9% households, while 33% households have only open drainage system in India.
- In addition, faecal contamination is also a cause for poor water quality and many water borne diseases.
- The latest Census data from 2011 reveals that the percentage of households having access to television and telephones in rural India exceeds the percentage of households with access to toilet facilities.
What are the economic impacts of inadequate sanitation in India?
Lack of adequate sanitation in India resulted in an annual loss of $53.8 billion ($161 billion in purchasing power parity, or PPP) or $48 per capita ($144 in PPP) in 2006, the year of evaluation in the report. This was equivalent to 6.4% of GDP in 2006. Most of these losses were related to health (71.7%; $38.5 billion), and mostly concentrated in children below five years.
Based on international evidence, even locally-implemented toilet and hygiene interventions could have saved $32.6 billion, equivalent to 3.9% of GDP annually; a potential gain of $29 per capita.
If goals for sanitation stated by government are achieved (household and community toilets, sewage treatment infrastructure, and operations and maintenance), the estimated potential size of the sanitation market until 2020 is quite large. The annual national toilet and sewage treatment market is estimated at over $6.6 billion annually, with cumulative market during 2007-20 at over $152 billion.
Of the cumulative market, $97 billion, or 64%, can potentially be in infrastructure and $54 billion, or 36%, in operations and maintenance services. In this context, it is clear that government funds allocated to sanitation fall far short of the finances needed to achieve goals stated in government documents.
In the 11th Five-Year Plan (2007-11), the flagship Total Sanitation Campaign (TSC) has been allocated $4 billion in 593 districts for rural toilets. In addition to funding and policy, administrative and governance initiatives have been substantially improved in recent years for TSC.
These include using internet and web-forms for online monitoring of progress, online public availability of village-level data on targets and achievements, online availability of analysis, technical notes and designs, and invitation of feedback from all stakeholders by the implementing departments.
Some reports related to Sanitation:
- Building healthy communities: Report by Swashtha, Practical Action, Nepal, 2012
- 10 Things about Sanitation: WHO with UNICEF and WSSCC
- UNDP: MDG Report 2015
- WHO MDG report
- India – Government funds for sanitation inadequate, private sector should pool in ( Anupam Tyagi, Economic Times – Feb 9, 2012
- White Paper generated by one of the Venture Center Associate Incubatee Startup, Flycatcher Technologies.