21 Mar 2014, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: Last year, the Asian Development Bank created the Sanitation Financing Partnership Trust Fund to help provide safe sanitation to families in Asia's cities and rural communities who still lack access to basic sanitation facilities and services.
ADB is leveraging the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's $15 million contribution to finance more than $28 million in non-sewered sanitation and septage management projects across the region in the next 5 years.
"The ADB and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation share the similar vision of bringing innovative solutions to Asia's sanitation sector, said Amy Leung, director of the Urban Development and Water Division in ADB's Southeast Asia department. "We are proud to support new testing and pilot implementation of innovative solutions to hasten access to safe sanitation for Asia's urban poor."
"Open defecation and inadequate toilets, sewers, and wastewater treatment systems lead to massive amounts of untreated human waste in the environment, harming the health and well-being of children,," said Brian Arbogast, director of the Water, Sanitation & Hygiene team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "We are delighted to have new partners like the ADB applying creative thinking to more effectively managing human waste to improve people's lives."
Recognizing that increasingly complex urban and coastal environments require new approaches to septage management, three projects have received funding support from the Sanitation Financing Partnership Trust Fund:
South Asia Urban Knowledge Hub
The South Asia Urban Knowledge Hub (k-hub) is a network of four research and training institutions in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka supported by ADB to facilitate information and experience exchange within South Asia among city managers, utility staff, policy makers, academics and the private sector for improved service delivery.
The k-hub activities will include support to national centers in developing business plans that structures the national centers' work and capacity needs for promoting innovative urban sanitation.
Pilot and Demonstration Activity Facility
The trust fund has set aside $2 million for ADB's Facility for Pilot and Demonstration Activity.
The new funding will support the testing and validation of pilot approaches to policies, technologies and business models to improve sanitation management and water services delivery with the intent to replicate and scale-up successful approaches across the region.
Septage Management in Coastal Towns in Bangladesh
An additional $1.6 million grant from the Trust Fund will support pilot innovations in sanitation and septage management as part of a planned ADB loan to Bangladesh for coastal town infrastructure improvements.
The new grant will support pilot projects in eight towns to improve septage collection and treatment systems.
The grant will also support capacity building for improved septage operation and maintenance in addition to promoting private sector participation in septage management.