Faecal Sludge Management Practices and the Development of Commercial Viable Pit Emptying Business in Small Towns in West Bengal

19 Jan 2017

Landscape study on the current faecal sludge management practices and the development of commercial viable pit emptying businesses in small towns in West Bengal

Samrat Gupta and Steven Sugden, Water for People-India January 2016

The study took place in November 2015 and was aimed at researching how pits are currently emptied, how waste is transported and dispose, and customer attitudes. It involved semi structured interviews to gain insights in to the manual scavenging processes and a 150 household quantitative survey in three higher density rural towns to assess possibilities of improving faecal sludge management.

The faecal sludge management challenge which Water for People has to tackle is not how to compete for the 15% of the emptying market currently served by the municipal subsidized tanker service, but how to compete and improve on the 85% emptying market served by the manual emptiers. The fact that manual emptying is technically illegal does not seem to have affected the ubiquitous nature or the ease of accessing such a service. The report finally outlines way forward which Water For People is now pursuing.

Read full study here.

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