Non-grid solutions for the future of urban water management workshop Monte Verita, 14-17 March

Björn Vinnerås participated in this meeting at ETH, Monte Verita venue in Ascona, Southern Switzerland. The venue was quite picturesque, with palm trees in the foreground and snowy mountains in the background.The view from the workshop venue, Monte Verita. PC: Björn Vinnerås

The workshop was organised by EAWAG, with 35 international experts on decentralized sanitation in attending. Focus of the discussions was on future of wastewater management and specifically, on off-grid sanitation systems. Bernhard Truffer, EAWAG presenting the difference in cost between decentralised and centralised sanitation systems in relation to system coverage in the case of Switzerland. PC: Max Maurer

Among other things, an exciting development is that representatives from Paris indicated that they are planning to install one million urine-diverting toilets over the next 20 years. The most important factor to bring this to reality will be the availability of functional, well-designed urine-diverting toilets. The conclusion from these discussions was that the global interest in decentralised off-grid solutions is increasing, as more and more regions face problems with water supply or wastewater management. In Paris’s case, the driver for urine diversion is to reduce the nitrogen flow into the River Seine, while in San Francisco experts are looking at ways to treat the wastewater so that it can be safely channelled back into the potable water network. Whatever the goal, decentralized solutions appear to be the most realistic option given their flexibility and ability to complement today’s systems.

Contact Björn Vinnerås

Post published by Prithvi Simha

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