Posts Tagged ‘Water resources’

New Portable Water Quality Test Used Successfully in Low Resource Settings Worldwide

Tue, 02Jul2013 2 comments

    CHAPEL HILL, NC, July 02, 2013 /24-7PressRelease/ — The Aquagenx Compartment Bag Test (CBT) is a new portable water test kit that lets anyone in any setting determine if their drinking water poses a potential health risk.

The CBT is the only portable, self-contained, household level water quality test that detects and quantifies E. coli levels in the World Health Organization 100mL standard sample, requires no electricity or lab, provides built-in decontamination and requires no incubator at temperatures above 25 degrees Celsius. It eliminates costs for refrigeration, sample transportation, lab sample analysis and processing and highly trained, specialized technicians.

Compact and self-contained, the CBT provides microbial water testing in a few simple steps with easy-to-score, visual, color change results.

The CBT has many benefits for water, sanitation and hygiene programs:

+ Provides quantitative water quality results based on the World Health Organization’s risk categories
+ Enables water quality testing even in low resource and disaster settings
+ Allows individuals and communities to make informed decisions about the safety of their drinking water and actions needed to improve water quality
+ Eliminates costs for refrigeration, sample transportation, lab sample analysis and processing, and highly trained, specialized technicians
+ Removes indirect costs associated with other water testing products such as labor costs that address product requirements, recleaning and sterilization of reusable testing components, required supporting equipment and excessive test waste
+ Expands and improves efficiency of water testing programs

Testing water quality is an essential component of any water, sanitation and hygiene program. The CBT now makes it possible for anyone, in any location or environment, to detect fecal bacteria in drinking water, determine if their water is safe to drink and monitor water quality.

Dr. Mark Sobsey , the creator of the CBT, is an authority on water quality and a distinguished professor at the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health. “It’s impossible to tell if water poses a health risk just by looking at it,” says Sobsey. “Drinking water has to be tested and monitored on an ongoing basis to insure continued safety. In developing countries and rural areas, the ability for local authorities and inhabitants to test water is severely limited. Yet a day without safe water is a day of being at risk of waterborne disease.

“Drinking water quality test kits should be accessible and easy to use, so that people can be informed and empowered to take appropriate action when their drinking water poses a risk to their health.”

Already used throughout the world, the CBT provides quantitative drinking water quality test results based on the World Health Organization risk categories and country standards. The CBT has been tested extensively by third parties against other standard testing methods and provides results on par with more complicated, expensive and less portable tests.

Aquagenx customers include major universities, global NGOs and government entities, and private companies focused on water quality testing, provision of safe household and community drinking water and water research.

Aquagenx, LLC is a social enterprise formed around years of research and development at the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health. Led by Dr. Mark Sobsey and Dr. Ku McMahan, Aquagenx developed and commercialized the Compartment Bag Test (CBT) to improve monitoring of drinking water in low resource settings and help prevent the millions of deaths that occur annually due to contaminated drinking water.

The CBT is the only portable, self-contained, household level water quality test that detects and quantifies E. coli levels in a WHO 100mL standard sample, requires no electricity or lab, provides built-in decontamination and requires no incubator at temperatures above 25 degrees Celsius. It eliminates costs for refrigeration, sample transportation, lab sample analysis and processing and highly trained, specialized technicians.

Website: (source of both images)

More details

Aquagenx, LLC |  (on site of Campus Y)

Press release service and press release distribution provided by


Webinar: Water, Integrity and Corruption : April 25 hosted by The Water Channel

Thu, 11Apr2013 Comments off

  Why Water and Integrity? Webinar #6

Date and time: April 25, 1300 GMT  (Click here to see what time that would be where you live)
Speaker: Binayak Das, Water Integrity Network
Click here to enter the webinar     
Description:    Water will determine what world the future generations will live in. But this precious resource is underpinned by bad governance and lack of integrity. In many countries shortcomings are not due to shortage of water resources but due to governance failures, such as institutional fragmentation, lack of coordinated decision-making, corruption and low levels of transparency and accountability. The result is that governance systems are often not able to prevent or even provide incentives for unethical behaviour and poor professional practice. Corruption is moreover all pervasive and affects all aspects of the water sector – from water resources management to drinking water services, irrigation and hydropower, it occurs in all phases – from design through construction to operation and maintenance – and it is a major factor in the global water crisis. Integrity issues are often at the core of conflicts around water, which are arising at local, country and international levels.Improving water governance requires transparency, accountability and fighting corruption. It requires the right knowledge, access to strong partnerships and good tools. Improving water integrity means working with preventive measures to promote transparency, accountability and participation in water. Lessons have already been learnt from this preventive work.
About the speaker: Binayak Das is the Programme Coordinator for Knowledge Management and Action Research at the Water Integrity network and also is focal point for South Asia. He has been associated with the water sector for the past 13 years – as a journalist, writer, researcher, coordinator and consultant.The Water Integrity Network (WIN) was formed in 2006 to respond to increasing concerns among water and anti-corruption stakeholders over corruption in the water sector. It combines global advocacy, regional networks and local action, to promote increased transparency and integrity, bringing together partners and members from the public and private sectors, civil society and academia, to drive change that will improve the lives of people who need it most.
Related Resources
About the Webinars:  Web-based Seminars  They are presentations or lectures transmitted over the Web. With support from IFAD, TheWaterChannel started a series of Webinars on a variety of topics under three themes related to rural poverty alleviation. The Webinars will be organised together with our partners UNESCO-IHE and Cap-Net, and will feature some well-known experts on these topics. The Webinars will be collaborative; the participants will be able to communicate with the resource persons in real-time. Apart from lectures, there will be key resources, polls and question-answer sessions.

Source for all core content is


Turning recycled wastewater into a commoditized resource : Valérie Issumo at TEDxLausanne

Sun, 03Mar2013 1 comment

The talk is titled: Wastewater, a resource or a weapon of mass destruction? 

Valérie shows us how to turn recycled wastewater into a commoditized resource, improve water sanitation, provide efficient water usage, and reduce price volatility.


Valérie Issumo is the CEO of Prana Sustainable Water company ( . An economist, she worked for 15 years as a soft commodities trader and as a trainer in Belgium, Uruguay, Cameroon and Switzerland. Throughout her career she has fought for sustainability and risk mitigation in the entire value chain of traded goods. She is a university lecturer and also a consultant for food security, socially responsible investments, pricing ecosystems and the assessment of water interdependencies. Valérie holds an MBA, has studied at various international water centres, and was a recipient of the Prize of the Belgian Minister of Foreign Trade.

Prana Sustainable Water is acting for the following challenges:

  • Reducing the 80% untreated wastewater (UNEP) by matching offers and pre-paid demands of treated water allowing to finance sanitation and restore the public water quality as common good for not hindering growth and strategies.
  • Water is the underlying commodity of every goods or services: please check and : Prana Sustainable Water has designed Ethical Water Titles© – futures contracts – to commoditize treated wastewater as tradable resource on the Ethical Water Exchange platform or commodities exchange for water procurement and price security.
  • Scaling-up clean technologies for wastewater:the members of Prana Sustainable Water Club active in wastewater can benefit organized markets through solvent demands of recycled water via Ethical Water Titles© allowing to leapfrog the leverage effects solving simultaneously water, health, economic, environmental and social issues.
  • Offset water consumption : wastewater can be recycled on an infinite basis. Prana Sustainable Water boosts responsible productions or services prioritizing reuse water with the automatic respect of the Water Exploitation Index and storing part of recycled wastewater into green water bnks© for philanthropy, reforestation and production of green/rain water, energy, public services like fires..etc…
  • Defense and food security Our motto is to incentivize responsible water use to produce:
    – what makes sense (prioritizing commoditized recycled water from wastewater for Human Rights, for water footprints of functional food or with high nutritional value and ecosystems services),
    – where it makes sense (according to the impact),
    – how it makes sense (with treated wastewater and sludge energy).


Prana Sustainable Water site pages

source of materials YouTube posting & Prana Sustainable Water


Where we get our fresh water – Christiana Z. Peppard TED-Ed

Fri, 01Mar2013 1 comment

Very quick! synopsis of global water consumption Serves as great intro for deeper exploration of water or tangential topics.

more on TED-Ed…

Also see the following video by the two

Fresh water scarcity: An introduction to the problem  


TED-Ed’s commitment to creating lessons worth sharing is an extension of TED’s mission of spreading great ideas. Within the growing TED-Ed video library, you will find carefully curated educational videos, many of which represent collaborations between talented educators and animators nominated through the TED-Ed platform. This platform also allows users to take any useful educational video, not just TED’s, and easily create a customized lesson around the video. Users can distribute the lessons, publicly or privately, and track their impact on the world, a class, or an individual student. – See more ….

Images and text from Ted-ed site

Waterless Urinals: A Resource Book

Thu, 21Feb2013 Comments off

This is a Wonderful 39 page  Technical document  on covering  all aspect  of Waterless Urinals and some variants that incorporates
the core ideas.

 waterless urinal

written by

  • Dr V M Chariar
  • S Ramesh Sakthivel

from forward

This Resource Book is a guide that seeks to assist individuals, builders, engineers, architects, and policy makers in promoting waterless urinals and the benefits of harvesting urine for reuse through waterless urinals and urine diverting toilets.

Chapters cover a wide set of Waterless Urinals details

  1. Waterless Urinals
    1. 1.1  Advantages of Waterless Urinals and Reuse of Urine
    2. 1.2  Demerits of Conventional Urinals
  2. Functioning of Waterless Urinals
    1. 2.1  Sealant Liquid Traps
    2. 2.2  Membrane Traps
    3. 2.3  Biological Blocks
    4. 2.4  Comparative Analysis of Popular Odour Traps
    5. 2.5  Other Types of odour Traps
    6. 2.6  Installation and Maintenance of Waterless Urinals
  3. Innovative Urinal Designs
    1. 3.1  Public Urinal Kiosk 21
    2. 3.2  Green Waterless Urinal
    3. 3.3  Self Constructed Urinals
  4. Urine Diverting Toilets
  5. Urine Harvesting for Agriculture
    1. 5.1  Safe Application of Urine 3
    2. 5.2  Methods of Urine Application
  6. Other Applications of Urine
  7. Challenges and the Way Forward
  8. References and Further Reading
The book has a solid collection of tables and diagrams that support the text
  • Comparative analysis of popular odour traps
  • Average chemical composition of fresh urine
  • Recommended dose of urine for various crops
  • Waterless urinals for men
  • Schematic diagram showing functioning of urinals
  • Sealant liquid based odour trap
  • Urinals with sealant liquid based odour traps
  • Flat rubber tube by Keramag and silicon membranes by Addicom
  • LDPE membrane by Shital Ceramics
  • Biological blocks
  • Formwork used for fabrication of public urinal kiosk
  • Reinforced concrete public urinal kiosk
  • Drawing of public urinal kiosk established at IIT Delhi
  • Green urinal established at IIT Delhi
  • Plant bed of green urinal with perforated pipe
  • Drawing of public urinal kiosk established at IIT Delhi
  • Self constructed urinal Eco‐lily
  • Squatting type urine diverting dry toilet with two chambers
  • Urine diverting no mix toilet 27 Sectional view of a urine diverting dry toilet
  • Deep injection of urine using soil injector
  • Deep injection of urine using perforated pet bottles
  • Use of fertilisation tank for applying urine through drip irrigation
  • Manually operated reactor for recovery of struvite
  • Schematic drawing of ammonia stripping from urine
Among many topics the Doc  weighs pros and cons of of traps to prevent odor and gases for escaping .Most of the solutions  have cost / maintenance barriers that limit feasibility to particular set of cases. India is a large county and need a variety of solutions as does the rest of the world.
We will  will  be interested to learn more about Zerodor
“An odourless trap Zerodor which does not require replaceable parts or consumables resulting in low maintenance costs has been developed at IIT Delhi. This model is in final test stage yet to be made commercially available.”    more on Zerodor
further notes from forward

Waterless Urinals do not require water for flushing and can be promoted at homes, institutions and public places to save water, energy and to harvest urine as a resource. Reduction in infrastructure required for water supply and waste water treatment is also a spinoff arising from installing waterless urinals. The concept, founded on the principles of ecological sanitation helps in preventing environmental damage caused by conventional flush sanitation systems.

In recent years, Human Urine has been identified as a potential resource that can be beneficially used for agriculture and industrial purposes. Human urine contains significant portion of essential plant nutrients such as nitrogen, phosphate and potassium excreted by human beings. Urine and faeces can also be separated employing systems such as urine diverting toilets. In the light of diminishing world’s phosphate and oil reserves which determine availability as well as pricing of mineral fertilisers, harvesting urine for reuse in agriculture assumes significant importance. Akin to the movement for harvesting rain water, urine harvesting is a concept which could have huge implications for resource conservation.

Link to download  book & A deeper overview:

with excerpts can be found on the the India Water Portal site  more….

Prepared By

Reminder: African Toilet Design Competition

Mon, 13Aug2012 Comments off



To discover a toilet concept design, which in its design, will address the various sanitation and related challenges faced by the millions of Africans i.e. no or limited access to water resources, scarcity of water resources, the absence of adequate bulk infrastructure (water and waste water works), high levels of unemployment and poverty, inadequate or no housing structures, disease, hunger etc. and in doing so, afford access to acceptable, safe and adequate sanitation whilst promoting the harvesting of by-products such as compost and urine for the establishment of self-sustained food gardens. The winning concept design(s) should adequately address / prevent and/or limited disease mitigation from transmission through the 5 C`s i.e. fluid, feet, food, fingers and flies.

Competition Dates:

Closing Date for Submission 30 September 2012

Short listed candidates Notified 30 October 2012

Winning Designs Announced 4 December 2012

Terms of Reference and Concept Design Specification IMPORTANT:

The design specifications exclude any potential design that:

    •   requires water to operate
    •   requires excavation of ground for installation
    •   resembles VIP or Double VIP Toilets

Design Specification The design should:

  1. Be environmentally friendly i.e. waterless and chemical free
  2. Promote aerobic processes and the dehydration of faecal matter through forced ventilation
  3. Promote urine diversion and the collection thereof (urine collection tank) and the conversion of faecal matter to compost-like material for agrarian use
  4. Be an On-site system i.e. collection and processing of human faecal matter, with little or no off site removal required
  5. Include a heat energy device that promotes further dehydration, creates a negative pressure and promotes an odourless environment
  6. Be self-contained i.e. the design must prevent spillage of both urine and faecal matter into the surrounding soil
  7. Be for a 1: 1 USE to promote household use (family of 4 – 6 people).

Production Parameters:

  1. Portability: Should be light weight, easy to transport and relocate.
  2. Durability: Should be strong in its design and afford vertical weight transfer efficiency of up to 200 Kilograms,
  3. UV – resistant.
  4. The design should be robust in its design in order to withstand the harsh African climate.

 Maintenance Features:

  1. The faecal collection chamber should allow for easy removal during cleaning cycles.
  2. Cleaning cycles, under normal use, should be once every 4 (four) weeks,
  3. Cleaning material/products should to be specified to enhance composting processes – should be certified bio-degradable and compostable.
  4. Personal safety and precautionary measures to be specified and amplified.

  Other Specifications:

The final design:

  1. Should be an above ground toilet system
  2. Should be able of mass production and rapid implementation in target areas though out Africa
  3. Should have a minimal of moving parts
  4. Should be affordable, both in its capital expenditure and monthly cleaning costs
  5. Should necessitate the use of bulking agent and toilet paper “only”
  6. Must be accompanied with the appropriate design specification schedules, cleaning and installation manuals.
  7. Must accommodate for the introduction of CLTS Principles in both its implementation phase and cleaning phase.
  8. All submissions must be accompanied by a sample concept design toilet unit.

Submission details

  • Submissions may be sent electronically via email to
  • Sample concept design units (actual toilet) (Shortlisted candidates only) MUST be sent to:
    • Unit 1 Linton Close
      ParowWestern Cape South Africa

      For complete details got to  African Toilet Design Competition

5. Prize Money

S.A. Rand



1st Prize Allocation

55 000

7 500


2ND Prize Allocation

30 000

5 000


3rd Prize Allocation

15 000

2 500

Total Prize Value

100 000

15 000

US$ estimated due to exchange rate fluctuations.
Winning concepts designs will attract commercial relationship with sponsor to further the commercialization of their designs.

Proudly Sponsored by:


For complete details got to  African Toilet Design Competition

all details/text  on this page come directly  from PDF  found at the above site

Keeping informed about WASH : Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Health Newsletter

Sat, 11Aug2012 2 comments

The “Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Health Newsletter ” from WHO is a  nice newsletter to subscribe to.  Its easy to skim but usually has a couple of great morsels of information with links that you will want to click through to.

If you would like to be added to their mailing list please email with the following:
To subscribe please include the text “subscribe WATERSANITATION” in the body of your email message.

Here is a sample of the latest newsletter. I can’t find a web page, it  appears to be only be accessible in a email

Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Health Newsletter N° 158 / 10 August 2012

A Manual for Economic Assessment of Drinking-water Interventions
This manual describes a practical technique for appraising or evaluating small-scale interventions that seek to provide safer and more accessible drinking-water to rural people. It complements the WHO/IWA publication Valuing Water, Valuing Livelihoods.
* * *
Tracking national financing to sanitation and drinking-water: A UN-Water GLAAS Working Paper 
Just published, this full background document produced for the UN-Water Global Analysis and Assessment of Sanitation and Drinking-water reviews current experiences relating to tracking financial flows to WASH. It presents a methodological framework which provides a point of departure for global partners to develop and roll out an internationally agreed method. The full document is available here:
A first meeting to take forward this initiative will take place 27 August at Stockholm World Water Week. Details available at:
* * *
Register today for the 2012 Chapel Hill Water and Health Conference!
The 2012 Water and Health Conference: Science, Policy and Innovation, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA, 29 October to 2 November, offers participants nearly 40 networking and workshop opportunities, and over 200 verbal and poster presentations around the following themes and more: Monitoring and Evaluation for Sustainability, Ecosystem Protection and Drinking Water Safety, WaSH and Child Health, Beyond 2015: Realizing Universal Access and Human Rights, Household-centered WaSH.  Early bird registration rate through August 15 at:
* * *
Newly released WHO report indicates increase in cholera cases in 2011
A total of 58 countries from all continents reported a cumulative total of 589 854 cholera cases, representing an increase of 85% from 2010.  The greatest proportion of cases was reported from the island of Hispaniola and the African continent.  These trends reflect the need to shift from basic responsiveness to a comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach that works with communities to improve access to safe drinking-water and sanitation, encourages behavioural change and promotes the targeted use of oral cholera vaccines where the disease is endemic. Access the report online at
Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development
The Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development is a peer-reviewed journal devoted to the dissemination of high-quality information on the science, policy and practice of drinking-water supply, sanitation and hygiene at local, national and international levels, published by IWA Publishing.
Click on the links below to view abstracts of some of the papers included in the latest issue of the journal:
Potential of community prepared wooden charcoal of Assam (India) for As(III) removal through batch and continuous column studies. Kamal Uddin Ahamad and Mohammad Jawed, 95–102 doi:10.2166/washdev.2012.039
A conceptual framework to evaluate the outcomes and impacts of water safety plans.
Richard J. Gelting, Kristin Delea and Elizabeth Medlin, 103–111 doi:10.2166/washdev.2012.079
Water resources management in central northern Namibia using empirically grounded modelling. M. Zimmermann, 112–123 doi:10.2166/washdev.2012.090
Applying the Household-Centered Environmental Sanitation planning approach: a case study from Nepal. Mingma Gyalzen Sherpa, Christoph Lüthi and Thammarat Koottatep, 124–132 doi:10.2166/washdev.2012.021
– – – – –
For subscription information on the journal:
For a sample copy:
To register for Contents Alert:

Water, Sanitation, Hygiene and Health Newsletter Details:

Please forward this email on to anyone who may be interested in its contents.


If you would like to be added to their mailing list please email with the following:
To subscribe please include the text “subscribe WATERSANITATION” in the body of your email message.  
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