Sustainable OneWorld Technologies C.I.C.
There is a need to provide systems to capture and treat human waste in emergency situations such as natural disasters or man-related emergencies including flooded areas and in refugee camps. The response has to be rapid as the need is immediate not weeks or months after the emergency has happened and when disease and foul conditions have spread. It also needs to be simple to install and operate as the normal infrastructure will have broken down and there may be little or no power.
Current practice today
When emergency situations arise, the options for containment and treatment of sewage materials are limited. The options sometimes used are
- Digging large open lagoons with the waste transported to these locations in vacuum tankers
- Small buried tanks which contain waste from a number of families
- Pits latrines dug to serve single homes or groups of dwellings
- Putting collected wastes into nearby landfill or dumps
Ambitions for a better solution
SOWTech have sought to design and develop a sanitation system that can achieve the following objectives:
- Easily transported and installed where ever the need arises
- Cost effective and affordable within the means of the aid agencies
- Safe containment of sewage
- Effective treatment of sewage with no requirement for power generators
- Reduction of pathogenic organisms within the sewage
The "SOWTech Design"
The main sanitation system is the Flexigester; a gas and watertight Butyl rubber digester kit. The kit can be folded for packing and is readily delivered by all transport including air freight. The digester can be operational within hours of arrival, thereby enabling waste to be contained in a hygienic manner without delay. The installation requires minimal ground preparation and no concrete structures. The digestion system is a natural anaerobic process but with a unique self-agitation system to aid the decomposition process. This process helps to reduce the number of pathogens found in the waste.
Before the digested waste is disposed of or used it should be free of pathogens that can cause disease to humans or animals. This can be achieved by raising the temperature of the waste material for a given time period. To perform this function SOWTech have designed the Pasteu Panel which is made of Butyl rubber. Comprised of small bore tubes, the panels are used in conjunction with digestion in the Flexigester and allow the waste to be heated in the sunshine to elevated temperatures, which help to kill harmful bacteria.
Equipment incorporating these designs have been evaluated in Africa in collaboration with and funded by International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Sanitation in Emergency situations
What we do