You are on page 1of 60

Ecological Sanitation

Prof. S. G. Bhate,
B. K. P. S. College of Architecture, PUNE

Why Eco-Sanitation?

• Improves Environmental qualities.
• Improves health of the people.
• Improves immunity to the diseases caused due to pathogens
in excreta.
• Waste generated by people goes back to the nature and the
loop is closed.
• Excreta is considered not as waste and harmful substance to
the health but as a very useful resource for recycling in to
good manure/Bio-Gas to Electricity.
Present scenario

• It is a well known fact that average rural women has to
travel long distances for defecation and this results in ill
health and other related problems.
• Government has recognized the plight of rural women
who do not have any toilet facilities near their house.
• Government has launched various schemes of health
and sanitation in rural areas with the help of NGO’s etc.
• There is now greater awareness among the people about
good health.
• However basic planning and sufficient follow-up action is
required to make the programme a success.
Present scenario of our cities

• Filth and unhygienic conditions prevail everywhere
in our cities and villages.
• Bad habits such as spitting, throwing waste and
defecating in open add to the pollution of our
• This pollutes our water resources such as rivers,
streams, nullhas, wells etc.
• It is estimated that huge number of infants die due
to diarrhea which is mainly caused by polluted
water due to infiltration of sewage.
• Social cost that our country has to bear due to
infant mortality and increase on health expenditure
runs in multi corers due to inadequate sanitation
facilities and impure drinking water
Present sewage treatment
practices in urban areas

• Water flush system where water is available in
sufficient quantity and the excreta is conveyed to
sewage treatment plant(STP) where it is treated
and treated water is either let in to the rivers, or
given to agricultural farms.
• Wherever water conveyance system is not
available, the excreta is led to the septic tanks
where it is treated for considerable time like one
or two years which is considered sufficient time
for the pathogens to become ineffective, and
then the tank is emptied and reloaded with
water for further use
• In slum areas and development in peripheral
areas the sewage is directly let in the gutters
without any treatment.
Social cost of conveyance

• It is very essential to find out average cost per person/ family for
treatment of sewage.
• Water conveyance system is possibly the costliest of all the
treatments as it is totally dependent on water which is going to be
in tremendously short supply in near future.
• It also hampers the natural cycle of waste generation, treatment
and treated excreta going back to the soil as very rich manure and
soil conditioner.
• All major cities are enjoying the benefits of water conveyance
system at the cost of NO SANITATION FACILITIES in rural areas.
• This causes tremendous imbalance in the working of nature and
results in pollution of all the underground water resources.
Some global sanitation facts

• People without access to safe drinking water in the year 2000:
– 1100 Million ( = 18 % of world population )
People without access to sanitation facilities in the year 2000:
2400 Million ( = 39 % of world population )

Polluted water is estimated to affect the health of 1.2 billion
people worldwide, and contributes to the death of 15 million children each year.

About 4 billion cases of diarrhoea occur each year:
– leading to 2.2 million deaths, predominantly among children,
– representing 15% of child deaths in developing countries.
For the latest data see the latest "The state of the world's children“
report from UNICEF, and UNDP‘s "Human Development Report“.
...some more sanitation facts

Worldwide, 5.3% of all deaths and 6.8% of all disabilities are caused by poor
sanitation hygiene, and water.
Some diseases that are caused (or supported) by unhygienic sanitation & faecal
contaminated drinking water:
Cholera, Typhoid Fevers, Diarrhoea, Dysentery,
Infectious Hepatitis, Malaria, Polio, Schistosomiasis
Chlorine by-products, used to reduce the risk of infectious disease, are associated
with a substantial portion of the cancer cases (bladder, rectal, colorectal and liver
cancer) from drinking water supplies.

900 million rural Chinese people excrete about 450 million tons of organic fertilizer
each year - worth 2.6 Billion US$!

The global human waste output (excrements) in the year 2000, is estimated to be
8.5 million tons each day ~ 49 million US$.
Breaking the pathogen cycle
To prevent illness pathogens must be blocked, so that
humans are not exposed to them by inhalation and

Sanitation is the first and most effective point for blocking pathogens
from faeces - when faeces are sanitized at the place of defecation
almost no pathogens will enter the environment.
The nutrient cycle

The fertilizing equivalent of excreta - nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), potassium (K)
each of us produces, is nearly sufficient for a person to grow his own food!
Nutrients in excrements
The mineral plant nutrients per person and year (in kg) are:

urine faeces Required to grow
Nutrient (500 ltr. / year) (50 ltr. / year)
Total 250 kg of cereals
Nitrogen (N) 4.0 0.5 4.5 5.6
Phosphorus(P) 0.4 0.2 0.6 0.7
Potassium (K) 0.9 0.3 1.2 1.2

• comprises 90% of the volume of human waste
• it also contains about 80% all the mineral plant nutirents (N, P, K)
• contain most of the carbonaceous (C) organic matter in our excrements
• carbon increases the water holding capacity and nurtures healthy soil
• organic matter serves as a soil conditioner and humus replenisher , an
asset not shared by chemical fertilizers!
Closing the nutrient cycle

• Urine:
• is a good natural mineral (N, P, K) fertilizer
• contains only few pathogens and heavy metals – thus urine is a clean fertilizer
• mixed with water (5–10 litre water / 1 litre urine) it can be used for crop irrigation
• Faeces:
• contain less minerals (N, P, K) than urine
• contain the most carbon (C) in our excrements
• contain a lot of pathogens
• they must be sanitized prior to usage
• sanitized faeces can be safely composted together with other garden & kitchen
organic wastes
• applying the resulting compost to the soil restores the soil’s humus layer
Sanitizing urine

• Sanitizing urine is not necessarily required, since urine from healthy people is also healthy:
• In a healthy individual the urine is sterile in the bladder.
• Some people drink their morning urine as a preemptive health care
measure (to be more resistant against diseases).
• However, in areas where diseases like bilharzia, typhus, cholera, hepatitis A & B, tuberculosis or
HIV/AIDS are endemic, urine should be sanitized prior to usage!
• Sanitizing urine by storing it in tanks:
• nitrogen in stored urine converts to ammonia, and the pH rises to about 9
• a low dilution with water should be sought – this will help to kill pathogens
• temperatures should tend toward a warmer environment (20°C or more)
• Necessary storage time (at 20°C):
• 6 months, when cross-contaminated with faeces
• 1 month for clean urine (no faecal contaminations)
Sanitizing faeces

Here are 4 approaches to sanitizing faeces:
• Dehydration (desiccation):
• Dehydration to below 5 % of solids - in dry warm climate achievable within 4 months - will lead to
complete inactivation of all worm eggs.
• Also Ascaris eggs, which are the most resistant pathogens.
• Pasteurisation:
• 70°C for one hour will kill as good as all pathogens.
• Aerobic composting:
• When composting the digesting aerobe bacteria will create high temperatures. 50-55°C kills pathogens
within days. Temperatures around 55-65°C kill all types of pathogens (except bacterial spores) within
• Anaerobic digestion:
• Takes longer than composting and produces unpleasant smells (SOH4).
The 6 composting essentials are:
1. Organic matter: ( carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) )
• Carbon is energy food for microorganisms.
• Nitrogen provides protein needed by the microorganisms to break down carbon.

2. Microorganisms:
• The microorganisms produce heat and transform organic matter into compost.
• Good sources of microorganisms are soil and finished compost.
3. Air:
• Composting bacteria are aerobic, which means they need air and cannot live in water,
so air is necessary because they need a lot of oxygen (O2) to do their job.
4. Water:
• Water is needed in a compost pile to keep the pile moist, but not wet.
5. Temperature:
• When the ground is frozen the bacteria are inactive – temperatures above 20°C are nice.
6. Time:
• If the previous 5 are present, compost is generated - whether within a month or a year.

The C-N ratio:

Since most of the job of composting is done by microorganisms the compost pile has to offer them a
balanced diet of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) to be attractive for them.
Unfortunately the C-N ratio of our faeces and urine is not a good diet!

Carbonaceous organic matter must be added to the compost pile, such as:
wood shavings, grain husks, straw, ashes, soil, paper, …


Vermiculture - adding earthworms for composting - is a very satisfactory method for obtaining a stable
compost of high quality, with nutrients readily available for plant assimilation.

During composting, the volume of the material is reduced by about 90% - the remaining 10% is
humus, filled with the minerals that were withdrawn from the soil where the food was grown.

All composted biological material becomes humus.
Analysis of Eco-toilets

Advantages of Eco Sanitation

• The flushing toilet system: • The ecological toilet system:

+ Breaks the pathogen cycle by flushing + Breaks pathogen cycle by storing and
sanitizing excrements.
away excrements.
+ Conserves water: uses either minimal
– Needs a lot of water to flush away water or even better: no water at all!
faeces and urine.
+ Excrements are processed near to the
– Excrements, flushing water, household point of ‚production‘ without industrial
greywaters and indus-trial wastewaters contaminants.
are mixed.
+ Sanitized and co-composted faeces
– The output of modern wastewater enrich soil‘s humus layer and nutrients
treatment plant cannot be safely used in urine are returned to the soil as
as agricultural fertilizer – their effluents fertilizer – nothing is contaminated.
even contaminate rivers and the sea
Designing an Eco friendly Toilet

• Using local materials and cost effective
• Use of bricks, stone, concrete blocks,
ferrocrete slabs, soil stabilized mud
blocks, fly ash bricks, bamboo and
bamboo mats etc are the choices of
• Use of minimum amount of water.
• Easy to construct, operate and maintain.
• Local participation of people and the end
users is a must.
Handling of Excreta

• Contact with excreta is harmful because of pathogens etc.
• It requires large amount of water for its conveyance and treatment.
• As far as possible the excreta should be treated at the source to
avoid contamination and reduce the water consumption.
• Excreta should be considered as a valuable resource and not as a
substance polluting the environment which is the case at present in
both urban and rural areas.
• We should also not overlook the fact that we use treated and
purified water for excreta conveyance thereby increasing the cost of
sewage treatment.
Toilets using minimum amount
of water

• Toilet construction envisages local labour and
• Easy to construct and maintain.
• Earthworms convert the excreta, kitchen and
agricultural waste in to rich fertilizer thereby
all the waste is recycled and goes back in to
agricultural fields.
• It is possible to sell this rich manure to
farmers and pay some incentives to all those
who are engaged in wormi composting.
• By paying reasonable amount we hope that
women self help groups can be roped in this
giant programme of converting waste in to
Bucket latrine

• The bucket holds excreta (faeces & urine) and added
covering materials
• It must be emptied every 1–3 days, preferably every day.
• The bucket is made of rubber, enamel, galvanized metal,
or lacquered wood
• It is placed under the slab, in the compartment created by
the platform also more simple constructions are possible
• A laborer replaces the bucket with a clean one, empties
the excreta into a larger container, and takes it to a
composting site:
• Water must be available so the laborer can wash the
containers and buckets.
• Composting can be done with no odour, flies or disease.
• The compost is then used to fertilize crops.
Arbor Loo - composting toilet

The Arbor Loo is a simple composting toilet with a portable slab,
pedestal and superstructure over a shallow pit:
• maximum 1 meter in depth
• pit can be unlined, or with a protective ring beam securing the pit
head and raising the latrine slightly above ground level.
• Wood ash and soil are added after each use to reduce fly
breeding and odour.
• Layers of organic matter, such as leaves, can be added as well to
assist in the decomposition process.
When the pit is about 70% full:
• the slab and superstructure are removed and mounted over a
new shallow pit.
• The filled and topped pit is then watered down.
• On the following day a young tree is planted and again well
Double vault composting toilet

Both urine and faeces accumulate in the shallow pit together with
wood ash, soil and organic plant matter, which is used cover
excrements after defecation.
When the first pit is nearly full:
• Slab and structure are moved to the second pit
• the contents of the used chamber are covered
with topsoil between 15 and 30 cm deep and
left to decompose
When the second pit is nearly full:
• the mature contents of the first pit are removed
• they can be easily removed, without any offensive
smells – else decomposition is not totally finished
• they should look, feel and smell like rich compost
Alternative designs of Eco
Alternative designs of Eco
Alternative designs of Eco
Urine separator pans
Design Solutions

Our proposal

• Prefabricated steel/wooden bullies/ bamboo toilet
• Easy assembly at site by any unskilled labour.
• Use of toilet can be started immediately.
• For covering and enclosing the toilet locally
available materials can be used.
• Participation of individual stake holder in
constructing the toilet
Pre-Fabricated toilet design in
Pre-Fabricated toilet design
in steel : 2
Pre-Fabricated toilet design in
steel : 3
Eco San Toilet
Live from Workshop

Toilet using Bamboo
Advantages of our toilets

• Toilets are constructed using locally available materials.
• Different designs to suit individual requirements.
• Urine is collected separately and can be applied directly to the
• Excreta is converted in to rich humus and soil conditioner with
the help of earth worms.
• Toilet positioning as per the local soil and water table condition.
• No pollution of any underground water source.
• Due to mass production the cost will become affordable to
common man.
Community Toilets with Bio Gas
Biogas generation

• Modern biogas technology constitutes a widely disseminated branch of technology
with a history of over 30 years. The technology is efficient, well demonstrated and
provides a cost-effective method of disposing organic wastes and producing fuel and
• Anaerobic bacteria degrade organic materials in the absence of oxygen. Methane
and CO2 are produced. The methane component can be used as an alternative
energy source.
• A reduction of total bio-solids volume of up to 50-80 % can be realized. The final
waste sludge is biologically stable and can serve as a rich humus for agriculture.
• The excreta of 25 people produce an average of about 1 m³ of biogas per day (40 l
per person and day), representing the approximate cooking energy demand of one
• In institutions with 500 or more attendants (schools, prisons, religious centres, public
facilities like markets) the produced biogas may supply sufficient energy for a
• Anaerobic treatment processes are suitable in tropical conditions because anaerobic
treatment functions well in temperatures exceeding 20ºC.
Gas plant proposals

Gas plant for single family

Gas plant combo unit for single family and cattle

Bio-gas generator
Comparative Expression
Merits of Eco-sanitation

Non-Eco Sanitation problems

Failure to close the nutrient cycle has resulted in:

• reduction of the soil’s humus layer (loss of soil fertility)
(need for more watering)
(increased risk of flooding!)

• increased use of pesticides (healthy soil has been destroyed)

• production and use of artificial fertilizers (since World War I)

• nutrient and Chlor (Cl) overload (loss of biodiversity)
in coastal and marine waters (toxic algae blooms)
(fish & coral dying)
Agricultural Benefits of Eco Sanitation

Increased Soil Fertility
Agricultural Benefits of Eco Sanitation

Increased yield of crops
Agricultural benefits of Eco Sanitation
Agricultural Benefits of Eco Sanitation
Eco Sanitation and Health
EcoSan tries to do both:
• Break the pathogen cycle -> no contact with
unsanitized faeces
• Close the nutrient cycle -> reuse urine & faeces as
fertilizer & soil conditioner

Therefore it has a
double effect on
people’s health by:

1. reducing disease
2. improving the

nutrient intake
Social benefits of Eco-Sanitation
• Healthy family contributes substantially to national income.
• Social recognition in the society for adopting better sanitation
• Overall clean and green environment which is soothing, serene and
spiritual in nature.
• Increased revenue generation due to more inflow of people, tourists
• Overall improvement in rural scenario in the form of more greenery,
water bodies, increase in agricultural production and more
employment opportunities for the educated unemployed youths.
Tangible results of using
Eco- San Toilets

• Great boon and facility to women.
• Improved health of all the family
• Less expenditure on medicines.
• Increase in agricultural produce thereby
increase in income.
• Improvement in soil fertility.

How to covert waste in to GOLD?
Two points plan of action:
• Education of masses.
• Creating self sufficient house
Education of masses

• In order to achieve success in this program, Education
and Awareness of the people will have to be given top
• This can be achieved by exhibiting the demonstration
• Conducting awareness programmes etc.
• It is also essential to muster support of the local people
in execution of the scheme in the form of labour and
collecting locally available suitable materials for
• Ideal way would be to target all the SELF HELP
GROUPS which are active in the villages along with
youth organizations, schools and concerned
Government Officials, who can play a major role in
cleaning up drive of the villages.
Self sufficient house

• Emphasis should be given to provide
following facilities in each and every
house to make it self sufficient.
achieving “self sufficient house” and
“clean environment.”
• Eco friendly toilet.
• Drinking water Purification Filter.
• Drinking water tank of 3000 Liters to 5000
Liters capacity for rain water storage.
• Solar lantern.
• Individual/ Community Bio-Gas plant.
• If we can achieve in providing above
mentioned bare minimum requirements of
every family, it will go a long way in
liberating the women from daily drudgery
How to correct the imbalance?

• We must respect the nature’s cycle and
understand self sustaining mechanism the
nature already has in its working.
• We are only to be blamed for our
greediness and our constant quest for
wanting more and more from the nature.
• Nature has miraculous ways of maintaining
its balance if we just care to observe its
• What is required is to adopt eco friendly
and self sustaining approach which will not
disturb nature’s rhythm and balance.
• The nature has given us appropriate
materials, technologies and resources to
treat all the waste matter and recycle them
in to very useful ingredients required for the
growth of plants.

• Let us take an oath that,
• Nature is GOD.
• Cleanliness is Godliness.
• We will constantly
endeavor to give back to
the mother earth what we
received from her.

• There is huge scope for schemes of converting waste in to gold.
• Schemes have to be worked out keeping in mind the benefits it
accrues to rural poor people.
• It will gain momentum as soon as it becomes economically viable
and help rural people and rural economy in the form of increased
food production using rich fertilizer and also improved quality of the
top soil.
• Indirect gains such as improved environmental qualities and health
will greatly contribute in saving in the medical expenses on each
individual and more productivity per person.
• We strongly advocate that to reduce water and air pollution and to
reduce load on urban sanitation schemes, more and more people
should opt for eco sanitation practices.

Brief Bio-Data of Prof. S. G. Bhate

Prof. Shrikant Bhate, age 58 years, is an architect and at
presently working in B. K. P. S. College of Architecture, Pune as
Assistant Professor and Principal In-charge.
His areas of interest and research are, cost effective techniques,
energy conservation, pre-casting and pre-fabrication techniques,
eco saniation, primary school buildings, low cost eco friendly
housing etc.
As a social entrepreneur and Director of NGO, Parisar Niyojan
Samiti, is very much involved in Healh and Sanitation

Mobile: 98920440648
Presentation Compiled By Sachin Borkar, Final Yr., BKPSCOA