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Providing solutions for the safe and commercially viable collection and composting of faecal sludge for use in agriculture and horticulture in Bangladesh.

TitleVeSV - Value at the end of the Sanitation Value Chain : final report
Publication TypeResearch Report
Year of Publication2015
AuthorsEvans, B, Fletcher, LA, Camargo-Valero, MA, Balasubramanya, S, Rao, CK, Fernando, S, Ahmed, R, Habib, MA, Asad, SM, Rahman, MM, Kabir, KB, Emon, MH
Pagination53 p. : 29 fig., 17 tab.,
Date Published03/2015
PublisherIRC and University of Leeds
Place PublishedLeeds, UK
Publication LanguageEnglish
Keywordscomposting, fertilizers

Bangladesh is no stranger to composting projects using both green waste and faecal sludge (FS). There have been many initiatives over the years with varying degrees of success. Similarly there have been hundreds, if not thousands of projects to improve access to latrines, latrine use and latrine management. Again there has been a great deal of success, especially in increasing the number of latrines being built. However, a key gap regarding the safe collection and processing of the waste from the pit still remains. In cases where projects have attempted addressing this, the solution has rarely been viable on a large scale. That is where this project—VeSV—is different. The aim of this project is to provide scientific evidence to support the commercial viability of collecting and composting faecal sludge for use in agriculture and horticulture.

The gap between a good idea and commercial success is bridged on this project by producing primary scientific data based on qualitative and quantitative research methods and by engaging a number of stakeholders across sectors. A rigorous research was conducted to characterize raw faecal sludge material from single pit latrines in rural Bangladesh, as the starting point to develop value across the sanitation chain from processing FS material, through adding value by recovering nutrient and finally by assessing the potential commercialization of the final product in the fertilizer market. Crucially academics, NGOs, business groups and existing fertilizer, composting and latrine management companies were involved as part of our Reference Group, which helped to develop practical engineering solutions in harmony with the right and relevant context in rural Bangladesh.

Our research outcomes include the development of safe methodologies for pit emptying; the assessment of people's intentions to change current operation and maintenance practices of pit latrines at household level and their willingness to participate in commercially viable and sustainable methods for FS management; the assessment of optimised engineering process for FS stabilisation and the production of a safe, high quality fertilizer that is desirable to farmers; and the identification of potential hurdles that may obstruct the widespread adoption of business models for FS fertiliser. (Executive summary)


Includes 7 ref.

Citation Key79165




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