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Blue Deal Wastewater Ethiopia visits Kenya

02 July 2024

Last month three Ethiopian water utilities went on an exposure visit to Kenya to get inspired on how to deal with faecal sludge treatment. Accompanied by Thijs van Osch and Richard Oudhuis, everybody learned a lot during this knowledge exchange wastewater treatment between these two neighbouring countries.

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Learning with 3 Ethiopian water utilities

Through the Blue Deal, World Waternet supports 3 Ethiopian water utilities: from the cities of Adama, Hawassa, and Sashemene. To deal with the wastewater streams, these utilities aim to construct Faecal Sludge Treatment Plants in which they are still at early stages. The water utilities Homawasco, Nawasco, and Nyewasco in the cities of Homa Bay, Lake Nakuru and Nyeri in Kenya are many steps ahead on the road and operate well-functioning treatment plants. We were warmly welcomed and it was inspiring to see how willing all were to share the available knowledge.


The questions kept on going

It turned out to be a very interesting and successful trip in which our Kenyan colleagues took us through how to deal with the challenges of wastewater treatment in East-Africa. Which techniques work best? How do you finance such an installation and the maintenance? What is the revenue model? How do you collaborate with nearby communities? How do you deal with the environment of such an installation? What is the quality of the effluent? How can you give value to the residual flows? How do you prevent sabotage?


Learning from Kenya WOPs

There are good initiatives in Kenya, particularly in the field of valorising residual flows. For instance, Nawasco makes briquettes from sludge through a pyrolysis process. These briquettes can burn for up to 3.5 hours without smell and contain more energy than a briquette we use for our BBQ. Because people often cook on wood, using 1 tonne of these briquettes saves the felling of 88 trees, and it is also cheaper. Doubling the environmental benefit! Several hotels in the region are now using these briquettes, and there are plans and funding for scaling up from 1 tonne a day to 30 tonnes a day. Very inspiring from which all of us can learn!

Our Ethiopian colleagues left Kenya feeling inspired, and are eager to continue working on clean water in their cities and make the fully operating Faecel Sludge Treatment Plants happen!

#wastewater #SDG6 #fecalsludgetreatment #BlueDeal