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Water resources are under increasing pressure. Population growth and urbanisation, rapid industrialisation, expanding and intensifying agricultural production, and increasing demand of water for industry and energy production are all putting pressure on water resources. Climate change exacerbates the problem. This development leads to water scarcity and conflicts worldwide and seriously undermines progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
Although water is scarce, it is often used in an unsustainable way: different stakeholders (water suppliers, industry, agriculture, households, sewage managers, etc.) frequently fulfil their needs without taking into account the impact on others. This lack of coordination causes overexploitation and wastage. Once used, proper treatment and reuse of wastewater is worldwide rather an exception than a norm. Essentially, this leads to the contamination of ecosystems, a lack of nutrients and soil degradation in agriculture, and negatively influences food security.
Single sector approaches such as wastewater treatment or river basin management are too limited. To save and recycle water, regain resources and protect ecosystems, the whole water cycle needs to be considered in an integrated, holistic approach. We need to link up reuse-oriented sanitation with water resources manage- ment and agriculture.
The Sustainable Sanitation and Water Management Toolbox considers the entire water cycle from source to sea, and back. It focuses on the human influence on the water and nutrient cycle and presents solutions for a sustainable use, treatment and reuse of water resources at the local level, thereby linking water management, sanitation and agriculture. The Toolbox helps in finding answers to the following core question: With what kind of processes, measures or tools can I optimise my local sanitation and water management system and make it more sustainable?
Hundreds of well-established approaches and good practice examples exist. Yet, searching for a special case or tool to optimise water and wastewater use is long and arduous, and it is easy to lose oversight and get lost in details.
The SSWM Toolbox allows users to find all relevant information and plan their approaches, while keeping a holistic approach in mind. It combines process and planning tools, software and technological approaches, and links them with publications, articles and weblinks, case studies, training material and ready-to-use presentations for download.
The SSWM Toolbox is particularly useful for water practitioners at the local level. However, it can also be used as an excellent and comprehensive information pool for students and as a ready-made training tool for international organisations and all those working within the water sector, i.e.:
The Toolbox structures ‘the best of’ the available material that support users for a more holistic planning and implementation of water and sanitation interventions. It contains seven main sections:
Moreover, seecon and its partnering organisations also offer tailor-made training courses and workshops in the field of SSWM upon request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In each of these content areas, you will find factsheets for each topic, including an executive summary, a description of the respective tool or approach, its applicability, and advantages and disadvantages. The factsheets give a comprehensive but concise overview on the topic, completed with advice for further readings and websites, case studies, and training and awareness raising material.
Furthermore, the SSWM Toolbox contains:
The Toolbox follows an open source concept. To read more about this, go to credits.
COPY IT, ADAPT IT, USE IT – BUT ACKNOWLEDGE THE SOURCE!
All images on this page by K. CONRADIN
The SSWM Toolbox Flyer is created in order inform users and partners on what the SSWM Toolbox is. The flyer gives a deeper insight about the six main sections of the toolbox (Concept & Background, Planning & Process Tools, Understand your System, Hardware & Software, Specific Topics, and Glossary & Library).
The SSWM Toolbox Poster is created in order inform users and partners on what the SSWM Toolbox is. The poster gives a quick overview about the six main sections of the toolbox (Concept & Background, Planning & Process Tools, Understand your System, Hardware & Software, Specific Topics, and Glossary & Library).