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Strengthening local governance for sustainable sanitation in Honduras

Published on: 12/07/2011

Honduras is well on track towards meeting the MDGs for sanitation as coverage is expanding rapidly. However, these statistics do not reflect the sustainability or the use of such facilities, as many of these are in poor condition or are not used at all. In addition, there is a large negative impact on water resources due to the discharge of untreated wastewater. One of the main reasons for this situation is the low capacity of municipalities in planning, implementation and monitoring of sanitation services, but above all in ongoing support to sustainability.

This study aims to analyze the causes of low use of facilities and sustainability, using an analytical framework of governance. An analysis on the local governance was carried out in:

  • the rural area of the association of municipalities of downtown La Paz (MAMCEPAZ)
  • the small town of Talanga, in the department of Francisco Morazan
  • peri-urban areas

The study concludes that the main reasons for poor sustainability and use of sanitation facilities are,

  • the weak institutional capacity of water committees
  • the physical condition of the infrastructure, and
  • the lack of capacities at community level

These elements have led to the need and opportunity to strengthen local governance of sanitation at different levels: the community and supporting organisations.