LINKING WATER OPERATORS THROUGHOUT ASIAA RAPID ASSESSMENT OFSEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIAPolicies and Practies in India, Indo...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OFSEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIAPOLICIES AND PRACTICES IN INDIA, INDONESIA, MALAYSIA,THE PHILIPPINES, SRI L...
Title: A Rapid Assessment of Septage Management in Asia: Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia,Malaysia, the Philippi...
Table of ContentsEXECUTIVE SUMMARY  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . ...
country assessment: MALAYSIA . .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  ....
List of TablesTable 1: Classification of Onsite Sanitation Systems  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  ...
EXECUTIVE SUMMARYAccording to the WHO/UNICEF 2008 Joint Monitoring             One finding from the assessment is that a k...
for ensuring public and financial support for initiatives.   scheduled desludging, while minimizing infrastructureEfforts ...
ACKNOWLEDGMENTSThe septage management report was developed by            Inc.), Joselito Riego de Dios (Philippine Departm...
GLOSSARY*Biosolids – the byproduct of the treatment of                         Seepage Pit – a hole in the ground that rec...
AcronymsThis list contains acronyms used in the report, with the name of the country where the term is used in parentheses...
LGU		    Local Government Unit (Indonesia, Philippines)LWUA		   Local Water Utilities Administration (Philippines)MDG		   ...
WASPOLA	   Water and Sanitation Policy Formulation and Action Planning Project (Indonesia)WHO		      World Health Organiza...
INTRODUCTIONWidespread migration to urban centers throughout               reports. In developing the first three chapters...
Doulaye KonÉ, Sandec/EawagA privately-owned septage collection truck empties its waste on a piece of vacant land. In the c...
OVERVIEW OF Septage management1.0 The case for improved Septage                              attained access to improved s...
contact.”7 These facilities include connections to public       2.0 Septic tankssewers, as well as onsite sanitation syste...
Table 1: Classification of Onsite Sanitation Systems10No.    OSS Technology                                               ...
Figure 3: The Impact of Full Septic Tanks13                   Inefficient IST,                                            ...
Examples of collection vehicles in Malaysia. Clockwise from the upper left: a 2.5 m3 tanker for small tanks and narrow lan...
Examples of septage treatment facilities in Malaysia. Clockwise from the upper left: a trenching site, a sludge drying bed...
ENDNOTES1.	   World Health Organization and United Nations Children’s                 Solutions.” Paper presented at the I...
indah water konsortium sdn bhd and luke duggleby, Eco-asiaMany septic tanks are difficult to access or not built to code i...
Regional challenges and good practicesThe development of physical infrastructure is only           The experiences of thes...
Table 2: Snapshot of the state of Sanitation in South and Southeast Asia1                                                 ...
there are over 160 million OSS in Indian cities, there        The World Bank estimates that inadequate sanitationare no se...
policy guidelines and standard operating procedures              1.4 The Philippines                      for developers a...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
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A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sr...
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A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam

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This publication was produced for review by the United States Agency for International Development. It was prepared by AECOM International Development and the Swiss Institute of Aquatic Sciences and Technology.

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A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam

  1. 1. LINKING WATER OPERATORS THROUGHOUT ASIAA RAPID ASSESSMENT OFSEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIAPolicies and Practies in India, Indonesia, Malaysia,the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and VietnamThis publication was produced for review by the United States Agency for International Development. It wasprepared by AECOM International Development and the Swiss Institute of Aquatic Sciences and Technology.
  2. 2. A RAPID ASSESSMENT OFSEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIAPOLICIES AND PRACTICES IN INDIA, INDONESIA, MALAYSIA,THE PHILIPPINES, SRI LANKA, THAILAND, AND VIETNAMDISCLAIMERThe authors’ views expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the United StatesAgency for International Development or the United States Government.
  3. 3. Title: A Rapid Assessment of Septage Management in Asia: Policies and Practices in India, Indonesia,Malaysia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and VietnamUSAID award number: 486-C-00-05-00010-00Strategic objective (SO) number: 486-004 Improved Environmental Conditions in AsiaProject title: Environmental Cooperation-Asia (ECO-Asia)Author(s): AECOM International Development, Inc. and the Department of Water and Sanitationin Developing Countries (Sandec) at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology(Eawag)Sponsoring USAID operating unit(s): Regional Development Mission for Asia (RDMA)Date of Publication: January 2010
  4. 4. Table of ContentsEXECUTIVE SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . viIAcknowledgements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . IXglossary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xACronyms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xIintroduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1overview of Septage management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 1.0 The case for improved Septage management in asia . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 2.0 septic tanks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 3.0 Collection and treatment infrastructure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9Regional challenges and good practices . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 1.0 SUMMARY OF COUNTRY experiences in septage management . . . . . . 11 2.0 common challenges to effective septage management . . . . . . . . 18 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21Regional recommendations and opportunities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 1.0 recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 2.0 Opportunities for peer-to-peer cooperation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30COUNTRY Assessments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 COUNTRY assessment: INDIA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 2.0 Background and context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 3.0 Legal Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 5.0 FUNDING SOURCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 6.0 RECOMMENDATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 COUNTRY assessment: Indonesia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 2.0 BACKGROUND AND CONTEXT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 3.0 Legal FRAMEWORK . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52 5.0 FUNDING SOURCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
  5. 5. country assessment: MALAYSIA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 2.0 Background and context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 3.0 Legal Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 5.0 FUNDING sources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73Country assessment: the Philippines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 2.0 Background and Context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 3.0 LegaL FRamework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80 5.0 FUNDING SOURCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 82 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 86COUNTRY assessment: SRI LANKA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90 2.0 BACKGROUND AND CONTEXT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90 3.0 Legal Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 92 4.0 INSTITUTIONS AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 93 5.0 FUNDING SOURCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 96 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98Country assessment: THAILAND . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102 2.0 Background and context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102 3.0 Legal Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 5.0 FUNDING SOURCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 110 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 112Country assessment: Vietnam . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 115 1.0 SUMMARY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 2.0 Background and context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 3.0 Legal Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119 4.0 INSTITUTIONs AND IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 120 5.0 funding sources . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123 6.0 Recommendations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124 ENDNOTES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126
  6. 6. List of TablesTable 1: Classification of Onsite Sanitation Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5Table 2: Snapshot of the state of Sanitation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12Table 3: Septage Management Policy Framework . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15Table 4: Implementation Responsibilities in Septage Management . . . . . . . . . . 17Table 5. Funding Sources for Septage Management . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19Table 6: Practitioner Recommendations to Improve Septage Management . . 24Table 7: Regional examples of good practices in Septage Management . . . . 27Table 8: Actual and Targeted Access to Sanitation Infrastructure at the End of Five-Year Plan Periods in india . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35Table 9: Public Sewage Treatment Plants in Malaysia as of 2008 . . . . . . . . . . 66Table 10: Number of Individual Septic Tank Desludged in Scheduled Cycles in malaysia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66Table 11: Effect of Septage on the Average Growth of Trees in malaysia . . . . 66Table 12: Community Surveys of Septic Tank Awareness in manila . . . . . . . . . 83List of FiguresFigure 1: Increased access to improved water, 1990-2006 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3Figure 2: Increased access to improved sanitation, 1990-2006 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3Figure 3: The Impact of Full Septic Tanks . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6Figure 4: The Complete Septage Management Cycle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6Figure 5: Scale of septage Treatment: Centralized or Semi-Decentralized? . . . 8Figure 6: Increasing Investments in Water Supply and Sanitation in india . . . 41Figure 7: Sewerage Access in Major Asian Cities, 2001 to 2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48
  7. 7. EXECUTIVE SUMMARYAccording to the WHO/UNICEF 2008 Joint Monitoring One finding from the assessment is that a key challengeProgram, urban access to improved sanitation has risen shared by all countries is the limited awarenessto 57 and 78 percent in South Asia and Southeast Asia, of policymakers about septage management andrespectively, due in large part to investments in onsite the corresponding need for policy setting, fundingsanitation systems such as septic tanks and pour-flush allocation, and enforcement. At the implementationlatrines. However, the management of onsite sanitation level, as detailed in the assessment, this lack ofremains a neglected component of urban sanitation and awareness translates into a range of commonwastewater management. Only recently have national challenges, including weak enforcement of septic tankgovernments, cities, and wastewater utilities begun to construction codes; lack of data on the location andaddress the management of septage, or the sludge condition of septic tanks; infrastructure developmentthat accumulates inside septic tanks. Rather, most without corresponding adoption of local policies andsanitation programs have focused on toilet installation regulations, capacity building programs, or publicand sewerage development, viewing onsite sanitation promotion initiatives; limited local capacity to design,as an informal, temporary form of infrastructure. As construct, and operate collection and treatmenta result, septic tanks and latrines in urban areas have infrastructure; and tariff structures that do notbecome major sources of groundwater and surface promote cost recovery, compliance with septagewater pollution, with significant environmental, public management regulations, or entrepreneurship. Inhealth, and economic impacts. addition, while private operators provide septage collection and disposal services in most countries inTo better understand the status of septage the region, few local governments or utilities regulatemanagement policy and practice in Asia, Environmental their activities, or leverage their capabilities to expandCooperation-Asia (ECO-Asia), a regional program local scheduled desludging services.of the United States Agency for InternationalDevelopment (USAID), conducted a rapid assessment Despite gaps in national policymaking and weakof septage management in India, Indonesia, Malaysia, septage management programs, however, thethe Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. assessment identified good practices in septageThis assessment report summarizes the institutional management in every country related to legal andand infrastructure capacity of these countries to institutional frameworks, infrastructure development,manage septage, identifies the common challenges private sector involvement, capacity building, andthat prevent better service provision, and provides services promotion. While Malaysia is the clear leaderrecommendations for program improvements based of the target countries examined, every countryon good practices across the region. Given the prevailing has developed some good practices that deservefocus on physical infrastructure in this field, this report consideration. Some countries, especially India, thefocuses principally on the enabling conditions that help Philippines, and Vietnam, are increasingly recognizingcities better manage septage, including private sector the need to invest in septage management as aparticipation and stakeholder awareness. complement to sewerage development.To validate the findings of the assessment and to The report also offers a series of recommendationsfacilitate dialogue among regional stakeholders, ECO- based on the lessons learned and good practicesAsia and Indah Water Konsortium (IWK), Malaysia’s identified through the country assessments. Some ofnational sewerage services provider, co-organized a the key recommendations based on the assessmentworkshop and training in Kuala Lumpur from May 25- findings are:28, 2009. The Department of Water and Sanitationin Developing Countries (Sandec) at the Swiss Federal Raise Awareness of Both Policymakers and SepticInstitute of Aquatic Science and Technology (Eawag) Tank Users. Building stakeholder awareness is criticalalso collaborated with ECO-Asia in the assessment. for creating effective new policies and programs, and A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA vii
  8. 8. for ensuring public and financial support for initiatives. scheduled desludging, while minimizing infrastructureEfforts should focus on raising policymaker awareness of requirements and creating business opportunities.the direct health, environmental, and economic benefitsof improved septage management. Responsible agencies Increase Funding and Reform Tariff Structures. Toand organization should also implement community- build or rehabilitate infrastructure, local governmentslevel awareness initiatives that highlight the benefits of and utilities must have access to national funding andmore frequent desludging to ensure acceptance of new low-interest loans, and/or have the authority to increaseprograms and costs. septage or wastewater tariffs. Where there are national caps on desludging tariffs, rates should be increased toEstablish and Enforce Clear National and Local cover the cost of septage collection, treatment, andPolicies. Clear legal and regulatory requirements disposal. Where possible, billing and collection forfor scheduled desludging, and septage collection and septage management should be combined with that oftreatment provide the foundation for comprehensive water services, in order to break customer paymentsseptage management programs. Countries should into installments, reduce unregulated private desludgingwork to establish appropriate legal and regulatory activity, and increase willingness to pay.frameworks and also create regulatory regimes thatensure effective enforcement. In working to develop new policies and practices, as well as strengthen capacity, wastewater operators andStrengthen the Capacity of Implementing Agencies cities should share experiences and information thoughand Utilities. Inadequate human and institutional partnerships, networking, and knowledge sharing. Onecapacity at the local level is a major barrier to proven approach for cooperation are water operatorconstructing and maintaining infrastructure, and partnerships (WOPs), which enable the direct transferregulating programs. National and local governments of technical assistance through peer-to-peer exchange.should develop capacity building initiatives that provide In particular, these partnerships link “mentor” utilitiestechnical support and training for national and local that have developed good practices with “recipient”officials, and both public and private operators. Focus utilities that are interested in technical assistance.areas should include technical, institutional, planning, WOPs leverage mentor interests in corporate socialsocial and financial aspects. responsibility, staff training, or understanding of other countries with recipient interest in adoptingEnable Private Service Providers in Scale Up new policies or practices. WaterLinks, a regionalScheduled Desludging. At present, private operators network that facilitates WOPs with the support ofare major providers of septage management services in the Asian Development Bank, International Watermost countries in the region. By creating new incentive Association and United States Agency for Internationalschemes and regulatory programs, local governments Development, has implemented dozens of successfulcan better leverage the private sector to scale up WOPs (www.waterlinks.org). viii A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  9. 9. ACKNOWLEDGMENTSThe septage management report was developed by Inc.), Joselito Riego de Dios (Philippine DepartmentLinda Shi from AECOM International Development, Inc., of Health), Sofyan Istandar (Water and Sanitationwhich implements the Environmental Cooperation-Asia Program-East Asia and Pacific), Nugroho Tri Utomoprogram (ECO-Asia) under contract with USAID, in (Indonesia National Development Planning Agency,collaboration with Doulaye Koné from the Department BAPPENAS), Nguyen Viet-Anh (Hanoi University ofof Water and Sanitation for Developing Countries at Civil Engineering), Phan Thi Nu (Danang URENCO),the Swiss Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology Phung Thi Huong (Vietnam Ministry of Natural(Sandec/Eawag). The following researchers conducted Resources and Environment), Ahmad Sharuzi Mohdthe research and writing for the country assessments: Salleh and Lim Pek Boon (Indah Water Konsortium),Lisa Lumbao, Amanda McMahon, Nguyen Thi Dan, Thammarat Koottatep (Asian Institute of Technology),Vilas Nitivattananon, Fenita Rosaria, and Narayan Bhat. and Joseph Ravikumar (Water and Sanitation Program-ECO-Asia staff, including Paul Violette and Niels van South Asia).Dijk, and consultant Elizabeth Kirkwood providedguidance and editing for this report. The authors would also like to thank the many water and wastewater utilities, national government agencies,The authors are very grateful to the following experts local government agencies, and academicians, includingwho reviewed the country assessments for technical those who participated in the May 2009 septageaccuracy and provided critical updates from the field management workshop, for so generously sharing theirand insightful comments: Cesar Yniguez (Philippine time, expertise, and insights.consultant), Mark Mulingbayan (Manila Water Company, A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA ix
  10. 10. GLOSSARY*Biosolids – the byproduct of the treatment of Seepage Pit – a hole in the ground that receives thedomestic wastewater in a domestic wastewater effluent from a septic tank and allows the effluent totreatment plant. Biosolids consist primarily of dead seep through the pit bottom and sides; may be linedmicrobes and other organic matter and can be used with bricks or filled with gravel.as organic fertilizer or soil amendments. Septage – the combination of scum, sludge, and liquidDesludging – the process of cleaning or removing the that accumulates in septic tanks.accumulated septage from a septic tank or wastewatertreatment facility. Septic Tank – a watertight, multi-chambered receptacle that receives sewage from houses or otherDigestion – a microbiological process that converts buildings and is designed to separate and store thechemically complex organic sludge to methane, carbon solids and partially digest the organic matter in thedioxide, and inoffensive humus-like material. sewage.Domestic Sewage – wastewater composed of Service Provider – a public or private entity, operatoruntreated human waste coming from residential or water utility that is engaged in the collection,and commercial sources. Domestic sewage does not desludging, handling, transporting, treating, andinclude industrial and/or hazardous wastes. disposing of sludge and septage from septic tanks, cesspools, Imhoff tanks, portalets, sewage treatmentEffluent – a general term for any wastewater, partially plants.or completely treated, or in its natural state, flowing outof a drainage canal, septic tank, building, manufacturing Sewage – mainly liquid waste containing some solidsplant, industrial plant, or treatment plant. produced by humans, which typically consists of washing water, feces, urine, laundry wastes, and otherFaecal Sludge Management – also known as septage material that flows down drains and toilets frommanagement, FSM concerns the various technologies households and other buildings.and mechanisms that can be used to treat and disposeof sludge – the general term for solid matter with Sewer – a pipe or conduit for carrying sewage andhighly variable water content produced by septic wastewater.tanks, latrines, and wastewater treatment plants. Sewerage – a system of sewers that conveysImproved Water – access to a household connection, wastewater to a treatment plant or disposal point. Itpublic standpipe, borehole, protected dug well, includes all infrastructure for collecting, transporting,protected spring, or rainwater collection, according to and pumping sewage.the Millennium Development Goals. Sludge – precipitated solid matter with a highlyImproved Sanitation – a connection to a public sewer mineralized content produced by domestic wastewateror septic system, or access to a pour-flush latrine, a treatment processes.simple pit latrine or a ventilated improved pit latrine,according to the Millennium Development Goals. Stabilization – the process of treating septage or sludge to reduce pathogen densities and vectorOnsite Sanitation System – infrastructure that aims attraction to produce an organic material thatto contain human excreta at the building; comprises of may be applied to the land as a soils conditioner.septic tanks and improved latrines.*Note: This glossary follows that found in the following source: Government of the Philippines, Department of Health. “Operations Manualon the Rules and Regulations Governing Sludge and Septage.” Manila: Department of Health, 2008. x A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  11. 11. AcronymsThis list contains acronyms used in the report, with the name of the country where the term is used in parentheses,where appropriate.ADB Asian Development BankANAMAI Department of Health in the Ministry of Public Health (Thailand)AusAID Australian Government Overseas Aid ProgramBAPPEDA Local branches of the BAPPENAS (Indonesia)BAPPENAS National Development Planning Agency (Indonesia)BMA Bangkok Metropolitan Authority (BMA)BORDA Bremen Overseas Research and Development Association (Germany)BOT Build-Operate-Transfer schemesCBO Community-Based OrganizationCEA Central Environmental Authority (Sri Lanka)CPHEEO Central Public Health and Environmental Engineering Organization (India)CWA 2004 Clean Water Act (Philippines)DAK Special Allocation Funds (Indonesia)DANIDA Danish International Development AgencyDENR Department of Environment and Natural Resources (Philippines)DKP Dinas Kebersihan dan Pertamanan, also Dinas, or sanitation agencies (Indonesia)DPWH Department of Public Works and Highways (Philippines)DOE Department of Energy (Malaysia)DOH Department of Health (Philippines)EOLA Department of Local Administration (Thailand)DEWATS Decentralized Wastewater Treatment SystemsECO-Asia Environmental Cooperation-Asia, a program of USAIDEAWAG Swiss Institute for Aquatic Science and TechnologyEPA Environmental Protection Agency (United States)ESP Environmental Services Program, a program of USAID (Indonesia)ISSDP Indonesia Sanitation Sector Development Program (Indonesia)FORKALIM Forum Komunikasi Air Limbah or the communication network for wastewater treatment operators (Indonesia)GDP Gross Domestic ProductGIS Geographic Information SystemGOI Government of IndiaGTZ German Agency for Technical CooperationHCMC Ho Chi Minh City, VietnamIMF International Monetary FundIPLT Instalasi Pengolahan Lumpur Tinja or septage treatment plant (Indonesia)IRD Research Institute for FranceIRR Implementing Rules and Regulations (Philippines)IWA International Water AssociationIWK Indah Water Konsortium (Malaysia)IST Individual Septic Tank (Malaysia)JBIC Japan Bank of International CooperationJNNURM Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Mission (India)KfW German Reconstruction Credit InstituteLA Local Authority (Malaysia, Sri Lanka)LGA Local Government Authority (Thailand) A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA xi
  12. 12. LGU Local Government Unit (Indonesia, Philippines)LWUA Local Water Utilities Administration (Philippines)MDG Millennium Development GoalMOC Ministry of Construction (Vietnam)MOE Ministry of Environment (Indonesia)MOF Ministry of Finance (Indonesia)MOH Ministry of Health (Indonesia, Vietnam)MONRE Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (Malaysia, Thailand)MOPH Ministry of Public Health (Thailand)MOUD Ministry of Urban Development (India)MPW Ministry of Public Works (Indonesia)MWCI Manila Water Company, Inc. (Philippines)MWSI Maynilad Water Services, Inc. (Philippines)NA Not availableNAP National Action Plan (Indonesia)NEQA 1992 National Environmental Quality Act (Thailand)NGO Nongovernmental OrganizationNSP Nirmal Shahar Puraskar or Clean Cities Award (India)NSSMP National Sewerage and Septage Management Program (Philippines)NUSP 2008 National Urban Sanitation Policy (India)NWQMF National Water Quality Management Fund (Philippines)NWSDB National Water Supply and Drainage Board (Sri Lanka)ODA Official Development AssistanceO&M Operations and MaintenanceOSS Onsite Sanitation SystemOUSDD Orientation for the Development of Urban Sewerage and Drainage until 2020 (Vietnam)PC Provincial Councils (Sri Lanka)PCD Pollution Control Department (Thailand)PDAM Perusahaan Daerah Air Minum or local water supply agency (Indonesia)PHA 1992 Public Health Act (Thailand)PHED Public Health Engineering Departments (India)PS Pradeshiya Sabhas or town councils (Sri Lanka)PSA Philippine Sanitation Alliance (Philippines)PWRF Philippine Water Revolving Fund (Philippines)Sandec Department for Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries under EawagSANIMAS Sanitasi Berbasis Masyarakat or Sanitation for Communities (Indonesia)SDC Swiss Agency for Development and CooperationSPAN Suruhanjaya Perkhidmatan Air Negara or Water Commission (Malaysia)SSA 1993 Sewerage Services Act (Malaysia)SSD Sewerage Services Department (Malaysia)STP Septage treatment plantsSUSEA Sustainable Sanitation in East Asia, a program of WSPUASB Upflow Anaerobic Sludge BlanketUDA Urban Development Authority (Sri Lanka)UIDSSMT Urban Infrastructure Development for Small and Medium Towns (India)ULB Urban Local Bodies (India)UNICEF United Nations Children’s FundUPWC Urban Public Works Companies (Vietnam)URENCO Urban Environmental Company (Vietnam)USAID United States Agency for International Development xii A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  13. 13. WASPOLA Water and Sanitation Policy Formulation and Action Planning Project (Indonesia)WHO World Health OrganizationWMA Wastewater Management Authority under MONRE (Thailand)WOP Water Operator PartnershipWQMA Water Quality Management Area (Philippines)WSDC Water Supply and Drainage Companies (Vietnam)WSIA Water Services Industry Act (Malaysia)WSP World Bank Water and Sanitation ProgramWWTP Wastewater treatment plantWSS Water Supply and Sewerage sector (India) A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA xiii
  14. 14. INTRODUCTIONWidespread migration to urban centers throughout reports. In developing the first three chapters of thisAsia is placing tremendous stress on urban water report, ECO-Asia collaborated with the Department ofsupplies and sanitation services, with a disproportionate Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries (Sandec)impact on the poor and women. Improving access to at the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science andclean water and adequate sanitation for the urban Technology (Eawag), a research institute that specializespoor is among the highest priorities facing Asian in applied research and capacity building, particularlydecision-makers, who are committed to achieving in the field of septage management. This assessmentthe Millennium Development Goals (MDG) target of contains the following sections:halving the proportion of people without sustainable • An Overview of Septage Management that providesaccess to safe drinking water and sanitation by 2015. In background on the need for septage services, the2005, the United States Government strengthened its function of septic tanks, and the components of acommitment to helping these countries achieve their septage management program;MDG targets by passing the 2005 Paul Simon Waterfor the Poor Act. • Regional Challenges and Good Practices that summarize the status of the seven target countries,The Environmental Cooperation-Asia (ECO-Asia) and key common challenges and good practices;program, a regional project of the United States Agency • Regional Recommendations and Opportunities thatfor International Development (USAID) Regional provide recommendations to help strengthenDevelopment Mission Asia (RDMA), works to improve programs as well as a strategy for regional capacityaccess to safe drinking water and sustainable sanitation. building; andAs part of these efforts, ECO-Asia developed thisrapid assessment of the legal and policy frameworks • Country Assessments that document theand institutional capacity of seven countries in South infrastructure, legal, institutional, and fundingand Southeast Asia to manage septage. Septage is the conditions in each country and the ability ofhuman waste contained in onsite sanitation systems, national governments, cities agencies, and operatorssuch as septic tanks and latrines, and are one of the to provide comprehensive septage management.most prevalent and least addressed forms of sanitation To validate preliminary findings from the desk studies,in Asian cities. This assessment aims to: (1) consolidate in May 2009, ECO-Asia and Indah Water Konsortiuminformation on the status of septage management (IWK), Malaysia’s national sewerage services provider,in the region; (2) determine the barriers to effective co-organized a workshop in Kuala Lumpur to discussseptage management programs faced by government findings and provide practitioner training on effectiveagencies and utilities; and (3) identify best practices in septage management. Fifty participants from waterthe region and help increase country capacity to provide and wastewater utilities, government ministries, localsustainable sanitation and wastewater treatment. government agencies, universities, and international organizations from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, theThis report draws mainly on desk studies of policies, laws, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam attended theand sector assessments for India, Indonesia, Malaysia, workshop. The valuable feedback and recommendationsthe Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam. As a provided by these participants have been incorporatedgeneral approach, researchers visited septage facilities into this report.that typify the situation in each country, and conductedinterviews with representatives from relevant This assessment also serves as a knowledge product ofgovernment agencies and private sector companies. WaterLinks, a regional network that supports waterSince most countries currently do not comprehensively operator partnerships in Asia. WaterLinks disseminatesaddress septage management, information on this sector knowledge products such as this report to provideis often very limited. To improve the accuracy of the water operators with additional tools to address theassessment, independent experts from each country, region’s water and sanitation challenges. WaterLinksincluding staff from line agencies, utilities, international is supported by the Asian Development Bank (ADB),organizations, and universities reviewed draft country International Water Association (IWA), and USAID. A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA 1
  15. 15. Doulaye KonÉ, Sandec/EawagA privately-owned septage collection truck empties its waste on a piece of vacant land. In the cities all over developing countries,septage haulers empty waste into water bodies, vacant land, drains, and landfills due to the lack of treatment facilities, easily accessiblefacilities, and incentives for compliance.
  16. 16. OVERVIEW OF Septage management1.0 The case for improved Septage attained access to improved sanitation as of 2006.3 Whilemanagement in asia access is gradually increasing in the region (see Figures 1 and 2), a World Bank Water and Sanitation Program studyDespite gains in the past two decades, safe sanitation of Cambodia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnamremains a public health and environmental crisis for many estimates that poor sanitation costs these countries acountries in South and Southeast Asia. An estimated 1.2 total of $9 billion per year – roughly 2 percent of theirbillion people in South and Southeast Asia still lack access combined GDPs – in the form of economic, health, andto improved sanitation, and waterborne diseases cause environmental losses.4over 800,000 premature deaths each year, 90 percentof whom are children under the age of five.1 In South The challenge to achieving the MDG targets for sanitation,Asia, which is not on track to meet the Millennium as well as the MDG child health target of reducing byDevelopment Goal (MDG) of halving the proportion two-thirds the mortality rate of children under the age ofof people without sustainable access to basic sanitation five between 1990 and 2015, is the treatment of humanfrom 1990 to 2015, only 33 percent of the population excreta, not the provision of sanitation facilities.had attained access to improved sanitation as of 2006.2In Southeast Asia, which is on track to meet the MDG The MDGs define an improved sanitation facility as “onesanitation target, 67 percent of the population had that hygienically separates human excreta from humanFigure 1: Increased access to improved water, 1990-2006 (% of population)5Figure 2: Increased access to improved sanitation, 1990-2006 (% of population)6 OVERVIEW OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT 3
  17. 17. contact.”7 These facilities include connections to public 2.0 Septic tankssewers, as well as onsite sanitation systems such as septictanks, pour-flush latrines, simple pit latrines, pit latrines Onsite sanitation systems (OSS) aims to contain humanwith slabs, ventilated improved pit latrines, and composting excreta and domestic wastewater at the householdtoilets. Since access to improved water has reached level, and can be classified into two main categories92 and 95 percent for urban areas in South Asia and (wet and dry) and seven sub-systems as shown in TableSoutheast Asia, respectively, households are increasingly 1. An overview of these systems is described in theupgrading to water-flushed forms of sanitation facilities, “Compendium of Sanitation Systems and Technologies”thereby increasing the volume of wastewater.8 published by Eawag/Sandec in 2008.9 This report broadly categorizes OSS as septic tanks and latrines and focusesOn paper, these facilities count towards reaching the particularly on septic tanks. However, as discussed inMDG targets, but in reality, most improved sanitation the box to the right on terminology, many septic tanksfacilities in South and Southeast Asia drain untreated into in the region are not built to code and function more aswaterways and groundwater, and do not fully separate improved latrines, which also need to be desludged.human excreta from human contact in the long run (seeTable 2, p. 12). In the countries studied in this report, Septic tanks are watertight, multi-chamberedseptic tanks are one of the more common, if not the receptacles that receive black and/or grey water andmost, common, forms of urban improved sanitation separate the liquid from the solid waste, which it storesfacilities, with 29 to 89 percent of urban households and partially digests. They provide primary treatment,relying on these systems. As most septic tanks are or the separation of solids and liquids, typically throughrarely desludged, they tend to be too full to perform the two-chamber settling tanks. Once raw sewage flowsintended primary treatment, and instead effectively serve into the tanks, solids settle to the bottom, formingas holding tanks. Highly contaminated septic effluent sludge. Oil and grease float to the top, creating a layerflowing out of septic tanks enters waterways through the of scum that prevents oxygen from penetrating theopen bottoms of older septic tanks or via the drainage surface. Under these anaerobic conditions, bacteriasystem, which usually empties into the nearest waterway. digest the wastewater, usually over a period of at leastWhen tanks are desludged, the septage, or sludge inside 24 hours. In a regularly desludged system, sludge fillsseptic tanks, is often dumped into waterways, drains, less than one-third of the tank, leaving the remaininglandfills, and vacant land due to the lack of septage two-thirds of the tank to perform anaerobic digestion.treatment plants and inadequate enforcement. Except Functioning septic tanks remove 60 to 80 percentfor Thailand and Malaysia, countries in this report treat organic pollutants and total suspended solids, but arefive percent or less of their septage. Even areas that have less effective in removing pathogens.11 Some have a filterdirect sewage connections, which comprise two to 40 system, which can further increase primary treatmentpercent of the urban population in the countries studied efficiency by 25 percent.in this report except Malaysia, sewage treatment is lessthan 15 percent of the total volume. Together with leaching fields, septic tanks can reduce contaminant levels to less than one percent. However,Across the region, domestic wastewater has become urban environments do not have space for leachingthe main contributor to the degradation of rivers, lakes, fields and urban septic tanks usually discharge effluentgroundwater, and coastal waters. This in turn threatens into the soil, a soakage pit, open channels, drains, orthe provision of safe water supply, especially to the poor. sewers. Effluent is particularly a threat to groundwaterWithout septage management and sewage treatment, if the water table is less than two meters deep.12even so-called “improved” sanitation facilities willremain a significant source of waterborne diseases and If a tank is not regularly desludged, the sludge graduallywater pollution. Strengthening septage management by fills the tank, leaving less and less space for anaerobicdeveloping the enabling policies and physical infrastructure digestion and increasing the level of suspended solidsfor septage collection and treatment capacity can be an and untreated sewage in the effluent discharged fromeffective and practical short- to medium-term solution the tank (see Figure 3). In such cases, polluted effluentfor wastewater treatment. will also quickly clog the filters. The quality and quantity of septage collected from onsite sanitation systems 4 A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  18. 18. Table 1: Classification of Onsite Sanitation Systems10No. OSS Technology Waste Flows1 Septic tank connected to existing sewer systems Wet; mixed black water and grey water system with offsite treatment2 Septic Tank with onsite effluent treatment or infiltration Wet; mixed black water and grey water system with onsite treatment3 Septic tank with onsite effluent treatment or infiltration; Wet; black water systems that are separate from grey latrines water4 Septic tank discharging to existing sewer systems Wet; urine-diversion system5 Latrines, composting toilet, VIP latrines Dry; grey water-separate system6 Urine Diverting toilet, dehydration toilet Dry; urine- and grey water-diversion system7 Latrines Dry; all wastes mixed together Clarifying the Terminology Onsite sanitation systems include both septic tanks and latrines, and different countries call the waste that accumulates inside OSS by different names. Thailand calls it “night soil”, Vietnam calls it “septic tank waste,” some English speaking countries use “septage,” and Sandec/Eawag defines it as “faecal sludge.” yy Septic tanks are watertight, multi-chambered receptacles that receive black and/or grey water and separate the liquid from the solid waste, which it stores and partially digests. Many OSS are mistakenly called septic tanks, even when they are inadequately sized or designed, have only one chamber, or have open bottoms, and therefore do not perform primary wastewater treatment. yy Septage is the combination of scum, sludge, and liquid that accumulates in septic tanks. Although this term technically applies only to septic tank wastewater, many people use it to describe waste from all onsite sanitation systems. yy Sludge by itself refers to any precipitated solid with a highly mineralized content produced by domestic wastewater treatment processes, including those created by septic tanks, centralized wastewater plants, or industrial processes. yy Faecal sludge is a term developed by Sandec/Eawag uses to apply to human excreta in both septic tanks and latrines. Given the number of countries in the region that use the term “septage” to describe waste in onsite sanitation, this report also uses the term for all types of human excreta collected from onsite sanitation systems, including wet and dry systems, and private or public toilets. These elements of onsite sanitation should not be confused with the piped wastewater collection system: yy Sewage is mainly liquid waste containing some solids produced by humans, which typically consists of washing water, feces, urine, laundry wastes, and other material that flows down drains and toilets from households and other buildings. It is usually applied to wastewater that flows into sewers. yy Sewers are pipes or conduits for carrying sewage and wastewater. yy Sewerage is the system of sewers that conveys wastewater to a treatment plant or disposal point. It includes all infrastructure for collecting, transporting, and pumping sewage, but does not include the wastewater treatment plant, since sewerage systems can convey sewage to waterways as well. OVERVIEW OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT 5
  19. 19. Figure 3: The Impact of Full Septic Tanks13 Inefficient IST, Efficient IST, IST, after desludges Which has NOT been desludged regularly Which has been desludged regularly Rectangular Metal Cover Rectangular Metal Cover Rectangular Metal CoverSewage Effluent with Sewage SewageFrom Scum Raw Sewage to From Scum Effluent to From Scum Effluent toPremises Filter & Drain Premises Filter & Drain Premises Filter & Drain Minimum Sludgedepends largely on the types of technology in use, the most toilet provision programs and city agencies dofrequency of desludging, climate, and soil conditions. not address the issue of what people do with theThe septic tank’s primary treatment efficacy can also septage that accumulates inside OSS. In the absence ofdecrease if households use chemical cleaners to clean adequate public services, private service providers havethe toilet, which may kill the bacteria and destroy emerged to empty OSS by hand or with vacuum trucks.anaerobic digestion. Operators with mechanized equipment often transport and dispose of septage several kilometers from people’sWhile many countries and international organizations homes in drains, waterways, open land, and agriculturalhave published guidelines for OSS design, in many cases fields. Manual desludgers working in low-income areasthese guidelines are inappropriate, inadequate, or not and squatter settlements, which are often inaccessibleenforced. Therefore, in reality, the sizes and designs of by truck, usually deposit the septage within the family’sseptic tank or latrines vary from one country to another, compound, into nearby lanes, drains, open land orand are influenced largely by the local construction waterways. Thus, the poorest have the highest healthstandards or the skill of masons. risk both because they are the most likely to provide manual desludging services, and because their homes3.0 Collection and are closest to the actual dumping grounds.treatment infrastructure To achieve effective and sustained health protectionDespite the widespread promotion of onsite sanitation for these exposed urban populations, future toiletsystems in reaching the MDGs’ sanitation target, provision programs and city agencies must address theFigure 4: The Complete Septage Management Cycle15 Uncontrolled use Faecal sludge or dispasal storage collection Faecal sludge Food transport Soil conditioning and fertilisation Treatment 6 A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  20. 20. Examples of collection vehicles in Malaysia. Clockwise from the upper left: a 2.5 m3 tanker for small tanks and narrow lanes, a 4.5 m3tanker for most domestic and commercial septic tanks, and an 11 m3 tanker for large industrial and government septic tanks and sludgeremoval from wastewater treatment plants. Indah Water Konsortium SbN Bhdcollection, transport, treatment, and safe disposal or and maintaining accurate records through manifestsreuse of treated septage from OSS (see Figure 4). A and receipts of desludging events, locations, and wastecomprehensive septage management program consists volumes help ensure accurate billing and develop aof the following physical infrastructure and processes, database of information to facilitate future desludging.and can be modified depending on the community’s Procedures that tie records to payment for collectiondemand, density, and ability to pay.14 operators can also prevent illegally dumping.3.1 Septage Transportation 3.2 Septage Treatment and DisposalWhile desludging frequencies vary, it is typically Septage can be treated in a variety of ways, andconsidered best practice to desludge tanks once every there is no single best option given the widely varyingthree to five years, or when the tank becomes one- conditions of urban areas in developing countries.third full. Studies have shown that after this period, Sandec and its partners have found that treatment usingsludge decomposes, solidifies, and can no longer be natural processes, including waste stabilization ponds,removed by suction alone.16 Frequent desludging also unplanted sludge drying beds, reed-planted dryinghelps reduce the pollution levels in the liquid effluent, beds, constructed wetlands, and composting, are thewhich typically enters waterways untreated. most cost-effective solutions. Sandec has developed a series of guidelines for planners and engineersDesludging trucks play the role of a “mobile sewer to build and implement these options.18 Anaerobicnetwork” for onsite sanitation systems. They collect the digestion (with biogas generation), lime treatment, andpollution at the building level and convey it to treatment mechanized systems, such as activated sludge process,or discharge sites, hence providing the same service are also widely used technologies in treating septage.as the underground sewer network. Today, there are Important considerations include the cost of land, thea number of vacuum trucks and gully suckers that capacity of staff to operate and maintain the system,desludge OSS. These systems range in size and design, and the location of the treatment facility with respectand some, like the UN-Habitat Vacutug, can now reach to OSS. Digested sludge from OSS is 100 times morelow-income areas that were previously inaccessible to concentrated than domestic wastewater flowing in themechanized desludging vehicles. The city of Hai Phong, sewer systems, and therefore should not be treatedVietnam, for example, uses a combination of small, with wastewater in sewage treatment plants.19hand-pushed vacuum tugs of 350 liters and truck-mounted vacuum tanks of five cubic meters.17 Although septage and sewage may share drying beds, this combination may affect the quality of the driedGiven the safety and health risks of manual OSS output if the sewage includes industrial wastewater. Ifdesludging, it is critical for cities to take steps to the dried sludge meets established standards, it can beend this common practice, which is dangerous and used as a soil amendment for reclaimed land, landfillunpleasant work often carried out by the poor. A cover, landscaping compost, or fertilizer for non-ediblemanual of practice can guide service providers on plantations. For use as compost for edible crops,how to properly contact customers, inspect and clean treatment facilities need to ensure that the end producttanks, take safety precautions, transport the waste, and attains standards for agricultural reuse. The Worldmaintain the equipment. Conducting physical surveys Health Organization’s 2006 “Volume 4: Excreta and OVERVIEW OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT 7
  21. 21. Examples of septage treatment facilities in Malaysia. Clockwise from the upper left: a trenching site, a sludge drying bed, a mobile dewatering unit, and an activated sludge facility - just some of the possible septage treatment technologies.Indah Water Konsortium SbN Bhd Linda Shi, ECO-Asia Indah Water Konsortium SbN BhdLinda shi, eco-asia Grey Water Use in Agriculture” of the “Guidelines for 3.3 Decentralizing Physical Infrastructure the Safe Use of Wastewater, Excreta, and Grey Water” provides standards for reuse. Given the difficulty of collecting septage and hauling it across cities to designated disposal and treatment In choosing the most appropriate treatment option, sites, medium-scale satellite treatment plants in easily the following factors should be considered: accessible locations may significantly reduce collection population density; capital and operating cost; levels and haulage costs (see Figure 5). Capital, operating and of mechanization; levels of external energy input; maintenance costs decrease with increasing plant size. compatibility with available local expertise; and the However, since larger treatment plants require longer existing institutional framework. Low capital and haulage distances between pits and disposal sites, operating cost treatment options are usually associated costs escalate for collection companies, which in turn with large land requirements. When selecting a increases the risk of indiscriminate and illegal dumping. treatment option, a balance between economic The optimum plant size has to be determined on a case- and technical feasibility on the one hand and land by-case basis as it depends on the local context (e.g., requirement on the other must be achieved to match labor cost, land price, treatment plant scale, haulage local conditions and needs.20 distance, and site conditions). Figure 5: Scale of septage Treatment: Centralized or Semi-Decentralized?21 What scale for FS treatment: centralised or semi-centralised? FSTP Objective: Minimize overall cost for collection, haulage and treatment while guaranteeing safety in FS handling, use or disposal 8 A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  22. 22. ENDNOTES1. World Health Organization and United Nations Children’s Solutions.” Paper presented at the IWA Asia-Pacific Regional Fund Joint Monitoring Programme for Water Supply and Conference in Bangkok, Thailand, 19-23 Oct. 2003. Sanitation (JMP). “Progress on Drinking Water and Sanitation: 16. Boesch, A. and R. Schertenleib. “Pit Emptying On-Site Special Focus on Sanitation.” UNICEF, New York and WHO, Excreta Disposal Systems. Field Tests with Mechanized Geneva, 2008 (hereinafter, WHO/UNICEF, 2008). Also, World Equipment in Gaborone (Botswana).” IRCWD, International Health Organization. “The World Health Report 2004: Reference Centre for Waste Disposal, 1985. Changing History.” Geneva, 2004. 17. Klingel, F., A. Montangero, and M. Strauss. “Nam Dinh2. WHO/UNICEF, 2008. (Vietnam) – Planning for Improved Faecal Sludge3. Ibid. Management and Treatment.” Paper presented at the Annual4. Hutton, G., U.E. Rodriguez, L. Napitupulu, P. Thang, P. Kov. Conference of the Water Supply and Sewerage Association “Economic Impacts of Sanitation in Southeast Asia: Summary of Vietnam, 6-7 Dec. 2001. Report.” World Bank Water and Sanitation Program, 2008. 18. For additional information on septage treatment technologies,5. WHO/UNICEF, 2008. see the following guides: Heinss, U., S.A. Larmie, and M. Strauss. “Solids Separation6. Ibid. and Pond Systems for the Treatment of Septage and Public7. Ibid. Toilet Sludges in Tropical Climate - Lessons Learnt and Recommendations for Preliminary Design.” Eawag/Sandec8. Ibid. Report No. 05, 1998. <http://www.sandec.ch/FaecalSludge/9. Tilley, E., Lüthi, C., Morel, A., Zurbrügg, C. and Schertenleib, Documents/Solids_sep_and_pond_treatm_98.pdf>. R. “Compendium of Sanitation Systems and Technologies.” Klingel, F., A. Montangero, and M. Strauss. “Nam Dinh Switzerland: Eawag, 2008. (Vietnam) – Planning for Improved Faecal Sludge 10. Network for the Development of Sustainable Approaches Management and Treatment.” Paper presented at the Annual for Large Scale Implementation of Sanitation in Africa - Conference of the Water Supply and Sewerage Association NETSSAF. “Evaluation of existing low cost conventional of Vietnam, 6-7 Dec. 2001. <http://www.sandec.ch/ as well as innovative sanitation system and technologies.” FaecalSludge/Documents/WSA_paper_Klingel_et_al.pdf> NETSSAF, 2007. Project co-funded by the European Koné, D. and M. Strauss. “Low-Cost Options for Treating Commission within the Sixth Framework Programme. Faecal Sludge (FS) in Developing Countries: <http://www.netssaf.net/111.0.html?&L=0>. Challenges and Performance.” In, ASTEE, ed. “9th11. Chernicharo, et al. 2001 as cited in von Sperling, Marcos, International Conference on Wetland Systems for Water and Carlos Augusto de Lemos Chernicharo. “Biological Pollution Control.” Avignon, France: IWA, Vol. 1, 2004. Wastewater Treatment in Warm Climate Regions.” London: Koottatep, T., N. Surinkul, C. Polprasert, A.S.M. Kamal, D. International Water Association, 2006. See also, Thrasher, Koné, A. Montangero, U. Heinss, and M. Strauss. “Treatment David. Design and Use of Pressure Sewer Systems. Michigan: of Septage in Constructed Wetlands in Tropical Climate: Lewis Publishers, Inc., 1988. Lessons Learnt from Seven Years of Operation.” Water12. Cave, B. and P. Kolsky. “Groundwater, Latrines and Health.” Science & Technology, Vol. 51(9), 2005. WELL Study Task No: 163. United Kingdom: London School Sanguinetti G.S., V. Ferrer, M.C. García, C. Tortul, A. of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and WEDC, Loughborough Montangero, D. Koné, and M. Strauss. “Isolation of Salmonella University, 2007. sp. in Sludge from Septage Treatment Plant.” Water Science &13. Indah Water Konsortium. “Individual Septic Tank.” <http:// Technology, Vol. 51(12), 2005. www.iwk.com.my/services-septic-tank-01.htm>. Cofie, O., S. Agbottah, M. Strauss, H. Esseku, A. Montangero,14. For guidance on developing a septage management program, E. Awuah, and D. Koné. “Solid-Liquid Separation of Faecal see the following documents: Sludge Using Drying Beds in Ghana: Implications for Nutrient Planning and Development Collaborative International, Inc. Recycling in Urban Agriculture.” Water Research, Vol.40(1), “Septic Tanks and Septage Management: A Practical Guide 2006. for Developing Comprehensive Programs for Septage 19. Koné D., M. Strauss, and D. Saywell. “Towards an Improved Management for Local Governments.” Manila: USAID, 2007. Faecal Sludge Management (FSM).” Proceedings of the 1st Government of the Philippines, Department of Health. International Symposium and Workshop on Faecal Sludge “Operations Manual on the Rules and Regulations Governing Management (FSM) Policy, 9-12 May 2006 Dakar, Bangladesh. Septage and Septage.” Manila: Department of Health, 2008. Final report, 2007. Government of the United States, Environmental Protection 20. Montangero, A., D. Koné, and M. Strauss. “Planning Towards Agency. “Onsite Wastewater Treatment Systems Manual.” Improved Excreta Management.” Istanbul, Turkey: 2002. Washington, DC: U.S. EPA, 2002. 21. Strauss, M., A. Montangero. “FS Management – Review15. Strauss, M., W.C. Barreiro, M. Steiner, A. Mensah, M. of Practices, Problems and Initiatives.” DFID Engineering Jeuland, S. Bolomey, A. Montangero, and D. Koné. “Urban Knowledge and Research Project-R8056. Consultancy report Excreta Management – Situation, Challenges, and Promising to GHK, the United Kingdom: 2002. OVERVIEW OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT 9
  23. 23. indah water konsortium sdn bhd and luke duggleby, Eco-asiaMany septic tanks are difficult to access or not built to code in the region. Developing a database of their location and condition is thefirst of a number of challenges to developing a successful septage management program.
  24. 24. Regional challenges and good practicesThe development of physical infrastructure is only The experiences of these countries, summarizedone component of a functioning septage management below, demonstrate that any number of approachesprogram, which also depends upon sustained can be successful when implemented in conjunctionpublic sector commitment and funding, effective with a comprehensive legal and policy framework, clearpolicies, appropriate implementation, and compliance delineation and appropriate delegation of roles andenforcement. To understand the diverse policies and responsibility, and dedicated public funding. Across thepractices for septage management in the region, this region, there are some cities, utilities, and agencies thatreport conducted country assessments for India, effectively manage septage, and can serve as models forIndonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, others. Nevertheless, the country assessments revealand Vietnam. that, overall, septage management remains a significant challenge and is not a top priority for most countries.Broadly speaking, septage management in mostcountries is a public sector activity. In the most Where governments do undertake septage managementcommon model, the national government adopts a initiatives, they tend to focus on physical infrastructure,legal and policy framework requiring local governments particularly the construction of treatment facilities,to develop septage and sewerage programs, and local and place less emphasis on enabling conditions, such asgovernments develop collection services and treatment policies, education, operator training, and sustainablefacilities. Actual implementation approaches can be financing. In many cases, without an effective enablingquite varied. Countries regulate septage management environment, septage treatment facilities sit emptythrough different national ministries (e.g. environment, or underutilized and often eventually shut down. Keypublic health, public works, planning, and construction), challenges, summarized below, include fragmentedand manage septage with wastewater services, water, or inadequate local regulations, weak enforcement,or solid waste. Service providers can include local weak institutional capacity, unclear delineation ofpublic service providers, nationalized public service responsibilities, and inadequate local and nationaloperators, private concessionaires, private contractors, funding for capital and operational expenses.or a combination of organizations. With the exceptionof Malaysia, independent service providers tend to fill 1.0 SUMMARY OF COUNTRYgaps created by inadequate public services, and operate EXPERIENCES IN SEPTAGEwithout public monitoring or regulation. Althoughlittle is known about these informal operators, in many MANAGEMENTcountries they are the main service providers and should Strengthening septage management capabilities andbe an integral part of formal desludging programs. capacity is not a top priority of most countries in the region. Policymakers tend to perceive septic tanks andTo validate the preliminary findings of this assessment, other onsite sanitation facilities as interim solutionsand to strengthen awareness, capacity, and regional that should not receive significant public funding. Asdialogue, ECO-Asia and Indah Water Konsortium a result, sector funding has focused on sewerage(IWK), Malaysia’s national sewerage services provider, development and the construction of centralizedorganized a workshop and training in Kuala Lumpur wastewater treatment facilities, projects that can takefrom May 25-28, 2009. The workshop was attended decades to complete given the expense and difficultyby 50 participants from water and wastewater utilities, of retrofitting cities with wastewater infrastructure.government ministries, local government agencies, Meanwhile, septic tanks and septage will continue to beuniversities, and international organizations from a prevalent form of urban sanitation, and will continueIndia, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and to have a significant impact on public health and theVietnam. These participants contributed important environment. Some countries, namely India, theinformation and insights on current conditions, Philippines, and Vietnam, are beginning to recognize thechallenges, and opportunities, which are included need to expand investments in septage managementthroughout the report, but particularly in this section after understanding the potential health impacts and(see Tables 3-5) and the next. the challenges of developing large centralized sewerage REGIONAL CHALLENGES AND GOOD PRACTICES 11
  25. 25. Table 2: Snapshot of the state of Sanitation in South and Southeast Asia1 Southeast Asia South Asia Indonesia Malaysia Philippines Thailand Vietnam India Sri Lanka Population 222 28 88 63 86 1,150 19 (in millions) Urban Population 93 18 54 21 23 350 3 (in millions) % Access to 89% 98% 96% 99% 98% 96% 98% improved water (urban) % Access to 67% 95% 81% 99% 88% 52-86% 89% improved sanitation (urban) % Sewerage 2.3% 73% 7% NA NA 40% 4% connections (urban) (national) (urban) (urban) (urban) % Sewage <14% 100% <10% 14% 4% 9% NA treated % Septic Tanks 62% 27% 40% (national) all but highly 77% 29% 89% (urban) (national) 85% (Metro urbanized (urban) (urban) (nation) Manila) areas % Septage 4% 100% 5% 30% <4% 0% <1% treated (national) (national) (Metro (national) (national) (national) (Nuwara Manila) Eliya) % Organic water NA NA 50% 54% 55% 80% NA pollution due to (Hanoi) domestic wastewater % Surface water 75% 45% 58% 52% NA 75% NA polluted (monitored (groundwater) rivers) Economic Cost $6.3 NA $1.4 NA $0.8 $5.7 NA of Poor Sanita- tion (in billions)Note: NA = not available < = less thansystems. While these infrastructure initiatives can face status of implementation and enforcement, and bestmany challenges, some countries, particularly in Malaysia, practices in each country.the Philippines, and Thailand have made good progressin overcoming obstacles. 1.1 IndiaWhat follows is a brief summary of the status of By one estimate, about 40 percent of urban householdsseptage management policies and practice in the in India are connected to a sewerage system, 29 percenttarget countries. These summaries are complemented are connected to a septic tank, and 17 percent useby Tables 2-5, which compare the physical, political, pit or vault latrines.2 However, very few cities in Indiainstitutional, and financial situations and challenges in the have the physical capacity to safely collect, transport,seven countries. The data in these tables are drawn from and treat urban septage and sewage. Most OSS arethe country assessments, as well as the feedback from emptied manually; only some of the larger cities haveparticipants at the septage management workshop. The private desludging companies that use vacuum trucks.country assessments in later sections provide detailed Medium- and large-size cities treat on average onlyinformation on the legal and institutional frameworks, nine percent of collected wastewater, and although 12 A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA
  26. 26. there are over 160 million OSS in Indian cities, there The World Bank estimates that inadequate sanitationare no septage management programs or treatment and wastewater treatment costs Indonesia $6.3 billionfacilities in the country.3 As a result, while as many as in economic losses each year, equal to 2.3 percent of its86 percent of urban residents in India have access to gross domestic product (GDP).9improved sanitation, the continued pollution of watersources with human excreta takes an immense toll on Indonesia’s sanitation sector faces many challenges,public health. including a fragmented policy and institutional framework, low government prioritization of sanitationHistorically, the Government of India has focused its (as demonstrated by the national budget of $0.37wastewater investments on centralized sewerage per capita for sanitation, versus $3.40 per capita forand treatment. However, the 2008 National Urban water),10 and overlapping responsibilities for sanitationSanitation Policy (NUSP) changed the country’s across many agencies. Decentralization in Indonesia hasapproach to urban sanitation. According to the NUSP, also presented a challenge, as local governments, whichlocal governments are to be responsible for behavioral manage sanitation through two to four departments,change, total sanitation, 100 percent safe waste disposal, often lack awareness and capacity to implementand ending manual scavenging, in addition to sewerage sanitation programs, or may even use national sanitationdevelopment.4 The NUSP tasks state governments allocations for other departments. Recognizing thewith drafting state urban sanitation policies that in difficulties of implementing sanitation projects inturn require cities to develop city sanitation strategies. the country, the National Development PlanningAs of 2009, six states have developed these plans Agency (BAPPENAS) is working with internationaland some cities have begun the citywide sanitation organizations, such as USAID, BORDA, and the Worldplanning process. Unlike other countries where the Bank, to develop top-down and bottom-up initiativesconstruction of facilities has preceded policy, India’s for community-based sanitation.focus on policy development allows cities to developintegrated strategies that maximize the efficacy of the 1.3 Malaysiafuture physical infrastructure. These are very positivesteps, although the lack of existing local and state Malaysia is a clear leader in the region in septagepolicy and management practices, and the lack of management. As of 2006, 98 percent of the countryphysical infrastructure to treat septage pose significant had access to safe water and 95 percent to improvedchallenges for India as it begins to address the critical sanitation.11 Malaysia increased the number of householdsissue of onsite sanitation. To implement NUSP, India with sewerage connections from five percent in 1993will need to further increase sector funding, which is to 73 percent in 2009.12 For households connected to$2.80 per capita for sanitation and $3.60 per capita for septic tanks, 50 percent now participate in scheduledwater.5 desludging in compliance with federal law. Malaysia’s experience provides many important lessons in policy1.2 Indonesia formation, institutional and implementation capacity, and funding for other countries interested in implementingApproximately 62 to 71 percent of the urban successful septage management programs.population in Indonesia uses septic tanks and latrines,a figure that is expected to rise as the country Prior to 1993, local governments were responsible forimplements land titling policies that foster homeowner both water and sewerage services, but typically lackedinvestments.6 Although Indonesia ranks third in the the capacity to provide adequate sewerage services,world after India and China in terms of under-built which were more expensive and complex than watersewerage infrastructure, it is among the few countries supply. In response, Malaysia nationalized seweragein the region that have built a large number of septage services in 1993, transferred all wastewater assets totreatment plants. Unfortunately, over 90 percent of the federal government, and offered services through athese facilities are not in operation, due to limited local single, private concessionaire, Indah Water Konsortiumcapacity to maintain and fund collection and treatment (IWK). From 1993 to 2008, IWK built sewers,programs.7 As a result, leaking septic tanks as well as developed desludging services, constructed septage andseptage disposed of in waterways cause as much as 70 wastewater treatment facilities across the country, and,percent of the country’s groundwater contamination.8 together with the regulatory agency, established clear REGIONAL CHALLENGES AND GOOD PRACTICES 13
  27. 27. policy guidelines and standard operating procedures 1.4 The Philippines for developers and wastewater operators. Important to Malaysia’s success was the national requirement that More than 40 percent of residents in the Philippines developers construct their own wastewater treatment and 85 percent of residents in Metro Manila use latrines systems. By leveraging a private sector building boom and septic tanks.14 Only four percent of all citizens have to construct and fund 70 to 80 percent of the country’s a sewer connection that leads to a treatment facility. sewerage and wastewater treatment infrastructure, As there are only a few septage treatment facilities in the government reduced its capital expenses and could the entire country, the Philippines treats very little of focus on subsidies for operations and maintenance its domestic wastewater. As a result, the World Bank (O&M) costs and pro-poor services. Malaysia’s national estimates that, although 78 percent of the country has budget is $8 per capita for sanitation, and $17 per access to improved sanitation, the Philippines still loses capita for water, the highest among the countries in this over $1.4 billion in related health, environmental, and report.13 economic costs per year.15 The consolidation of sewerage services under one Recognizing the urgent need to address this issue, the policy and one implementer empowered IWK to Philippines adopted the Clean Water Act in 2004, which effectively develop and reinforce its expertise and to requires national agencies, local governments, and disseminate its knowledge across branch offices in the water districts to provide either septage management country. Having established a functioning program and or sewerage services for all domestic wastewater infrastructure, the federal government is deploying a dischargers. Early adopting cities, such as Marikina new framework to decentralize responsibilities back to and Dumaguete, have developed local ordinances local service providers and integrate the management requiring regular desludging and have constructed new of water and wastewater resources in each locality. septage treatment facilities. The Department of Health This restructuring raises new questions on how to has also issued a comprehensive manual guiding local decentralize IWK’s expertise, how far to decentralize implementation of septage management programs. collection and treatment operations, and how to These efforts serve as useful models for other cities manage contractors and ensure regular desludging. and countries. The relevant national agencies are now Other countries that already provide joint water and developing a national implementation master plan for wastewater services may provide lessons and models septage management. for Malaysia as it transitions into the new framework.Linda Shi, ECO-asia Inadequate wastewater collection and treatment has turned Metro Manila’s many waterways into open sewers. Ongoing and planned projects in sewerage and septage development aim to restore local water quality. 14 A RAPID ASSESSMENT OF SEPTAGE MANAGEMENT IN ASIA

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