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Entrenchment of pit latrine and wastewater sludges
Expanded Title:Municipalities in South Africa are used to dealing with wastewater treatment works sludge disposal. Very few, however, have to date tackled the disposal of pit latrine sludge at any scale, with eThekwini being the only notable exception. Wastewater Treatment works sludges are generally disposed of in landfills, or they are composted. In some cases they are irrigated or surface spread. Landfill and composting are fairly expensive processes, with costs in the order of R500 m3 being reported. No other method of sludge disposal is more economical than simply burying it in the ground. In the ground, sludge decomposes by natural biological processes and after a few years is barely distinguishable from the surrounding soil. After three years even the hardiest pathogens such as Ascaris die off. Despite high loading rates no significant impact on groundwater has been observed in the trials to date over four years of monitoring. When sludge is buried in close proximity to eucalyptus trees, which form a major part of the South African forestry plantations, growth is enhanced by up to 50% in terms of total timber volume, although it is too soon to say if the magnitude of this difference will be sustained over a full growth cycle.
Date Published:01/02/2015
Document Type:Research Report
Document Subjects:Drinking water - Water supply, Sanitation - On site sanitation
Document Keywords:Ground Water, Water Quality
Document Format:Report
Document File Type:pdf
Research Report Type:Standard
WRC Report No:2097/1/14
ISBN No:978-1-4312-0624-7
Authors:Still D; Lorentz S; Adhanom G
Project No:K5/2097
Originator:WRC
Organizations:Partners in Development; University of KwaZuIu-Natal
Document Size:7 418 KB
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