Human waste safely transformed into useful resources such as clean drinking water? Seems inconceivable, yet work is underway to develop international guidance to help new technologies flourish, starting with the world’s first international workshop agreement.
Published on ISO.org | By Clare Naden
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), it is estimated that 2.3 billion people around the world have no access to safe, clean toilets, and where there are sanitation facilities, the waste is often not safely managed.
The cost of lives is enormous, contributing to an estimated 280 000 deaths every year), not to mention the detrimental impact on people’s well-being and the environment.
New technologies such as community-scaled faecal sludge treatment units, which essentially treat the waste at a community level even where there are no suitable wastewater treatment systems in place, are emerging to address this, providing a lifeline for many.
Yet in order for this new technology to take off, internationally agreed guidelines are required.
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