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Comparing the costs of different urban sanitation solutions in developing cities in Africa and Asia

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A short policy brief summarising a literature review that explored the costs of various urban sanitation solutions. The review indicates that conventional sewer systems are the most expensive solution, followed by systems based on septic tanks, ventilated improved pits (VIP), urine-diverting dry toilets (UDDT), then pour-flush pit latrines. Simplified sewer systems may cost less than both conventional sewer systems and septic tank-based systems.

The review also shows that cost reporting methodologies are inconsistent, and few studies provide data on lifecycle costs for the full urban sanitation chain. It recommends that building sanitation cost databases at country or city level could be useful for investment planning.

Date: 26 July 2018