Cookie tracking notice
Are we allowed to crumble with cookies and anonymous tracking?

We use cookies on our website. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site (so called session cookies), while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). We use the application Matomo and the external service etracker to analyze your behavior on our website anonymously. Because we value your privacy, we are here with asking your permission to use the following technologies. You can change your settings any time via this link or the menu item in footer menu. For more information visit our Data Policy

Sustainable Sanitation and Groundwater, Hannover

October 2008 | Germany

From 14-17 October 2008, the German Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR) convened the international symposium on “Coupling Sustainable Sanitation and Groundwater Protection” in Hannover, Germany, in order to highlight the immense problems of groundwater pollution due to absent or inadequate sanitation facilities in developing countries.

Together with international co-convenors (BMZ, UNEP and WHO) and supporting organizations (BORDA, DED, DWA, GTZ, IAH, KfW and TTZ), BGR offered this symposium as the first event dealing with both topics. About 130 participants from more than 30 countries discussed the links between sustainable sanitation and groundwater protection. A comprehensive poster exhibition covered a vast variety of lessons learnt, mainly from developing countries. The symposium was one of the activities of BGR realized within the framework of the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance.

The chosen theme reflects the fact that the 2.5 billion people worldwide without access to improved sanitation pose an increasing threat to both surface and groundwater resources. Groundwater represents not only a water source utilised by a growing number of urban dwellers, but also a resource people in arid areas completely depend upon, as well as being the most precious freshwater resource readily available to mankind. However, groundwater utilisation for drinking water is endangered because of the uncontrolled disposal of human excreta in informal settlements and the absence of sustainable sanitation concepts in exploding mega cities and their peri-urban surroundings. Therefore timely and effective protection of groundwater is of essential importance for keeping this precious resource clean and safe for future generations. Evidently, only sustainable sanitation can enhance the long-term protection of groundwater.


Resumé of the Symposium

Symposium Booklet

Decentralised Sanitation and Wastewater Treatment. Revised 2nd Edition (PDF, 1.3 MB)


Keynotes: Links between groundwater protection and sanitation (Wed, October 15th)

Urban water supply security in the developing world – groundwater use trends and the sanitation nexus (PDF, 3.7 MB)
Stephen Foster, World Bank GW-MATE / IAH

The insidious nature of groundwater contamination – the great need for protection (PDF, 1.5 MB)
Perry McCarty, Stanford University

Statements: International efforts for improved sanitation and groundwater protection

Sanitation and groundwater protection: a UNEP perspective (PDF, 1 MB)
Patrick Mmayi, UNEP

Sanitation and groundwater protection: a WHO perspective (PDF, 3.1 MB)
Susanne Herbst, WHO / University of Bonn

Better planning for better sanitation (PDF, 148 KB)
Darren Saywell, IWA / SuSanA

Session I: Sanitation concepts and their relevance for groundwater protection

Overview of anaerobic treatment options for sustainable sanitation systems (PDF, 3.9 MB)
Elisabeth von Münch, GTZ

Overview on dry sanitation concepts including handling and storage of urine (PDF, 3.4 MB)
Arno Rosemarin, SEI

Groundwater protection through improved wastewater management in Kafr El Sheikh, Egypt (PDF, 1.0 MB)
Thomas Levin, GTZ

Sustainable and safe application of sludge and wastewater in short-rotation-plantations (PDF, 2.5 MB)
Mirko Hänel, TTZ

Constructed wetlands for greywater handling (PDF, 3.0 MB)
Ralf Otterpohl, Hamburg University of Technology

DEWAT systems and stakeholder involvement: Lessons learnt from a national community based sanitation programme (PDF, 3.2 MB)
Stefan Reuter, BORDA

Session II: Approaches covering sustainable sanitation and groundwater protection (Thursday, October 16th)

Groundwater protection and sanitation – practical experiences in Jordan (PDF, 5.7 MB)
Ali Subah, MWI and Ariane Borgstedt, BGR

Challenges of groundwater management in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam (PDF, 1.7 MB)
Thomas Nuber, University of Bochum

Contribution of wastewater treatment to groundwater protection - experiences in Tunesia (PDF, 2.2 MB)
Ridha Béji and Khaled Mehrez, DGRE / ONAS; KfW

Protecting groundwater through safe agricultural reuse of wastewater (PDF, 4.6 MB)
Bernard Keraita, IWMI

Integrated assessment of sanitation aspects and groundwater management at the Lower Jordan River within the SMART-research project (PDF, 4.6 MB)
Bassim Abbassi, Al-Balqua University and Leif Wolf, University of Karlsruhe

Mainstreaming sanitation into planning and implementation of integrated watershed management measures in Kenya (PDF, 3.9 MB)
Chris Shisanya, Kenyatta University

Field trip: Sanitation technologies and groundwater protection near Braunschweig (Friday, October 17th)

Braunschweig – Reuse of treated wastewater and quality-proven sludge in agriculture (PDF, 4.1 MB)
Heinrich Ripke, The Sewage Utilization Association of Braunschweig

Purification and Agricultural Utilization of Communal Wastewater  (PDF, 3.5 MB)


1) The current status of sanitation and groundwater linkage in the city of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (PDF, 836 KB)
Abiye, T.A. University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa

2) Vulnerability of shallow aquifers to pollution, the Ugandan case (PDF, 126 KB)
Amegovu, L.I. Directorate of Water Resources Management, Entebbe, Uganda

3) Integrated groundwater modeling and hydrochemical study in Addis Ababa area: Towards developing decision support system for wellhead protection (PDF, 676 KB)
Ayenew, T.T. Dept. of Earth Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Ethiopia

4) Groundwater pollution in shantytowns of Cotonou: Which strategies to limit waterborne diseases risks? (PDF, 611 KB)
Boko, M. University of Abomey-Calavi, Cotonou, Benin

5) Nitrate pollution in groundwater in the Pearl River delta, China (PDF, 410 KB)
Chen, J. Dept. of Water Resources & Environment, Sun Yat-sen University, Guangzhou, China

6) Evidence of improper sanitation on groundwater quality in Thiaroye aquifer, Dakar, Senegal: An isotopic approach (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Diédhiou, M. Dép. de Géologie, Université Cheikh Anta Diop, Dakar, Sénégal

7) Water supply and sanitation of Kabul basin (PDF, 392 KB)
Eqrar, M.N. Dept. of Geology, University of Kabul, Afghanistan

8) Impact of land use on groundwater quality in the Thiaroye unsewered suburb (Dakar, Senegal): Remote sensing and GIS approach (PDF, 311 KB)
Faye, S.C. Dép. de Géologie, Université Cheikh Anta Diop, Dakar, Sénégal

9) Water quality asessment of the Benig River: Implication to environmental management (PDF, 3.6 MB)
Fernandez, X.G.A. Tarlac State University, Tarlac City, Philippines

10) A sustainable sanitation for internally displaced persons in Sri Lanka (PDF, 178 KB)
Fernando, W.B.G. National Water Supply and Drainage Board, Mount Lavinia, Sri Lanka

11) Leaf area and yield response of urine fertilised sorghum: A field trial in Ghana (PDF, 225 KB)
Germer, J. Centre for Agriculture in the Tropics and Subtropics, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany

12) Efficiency of different sanitisation methods on nutrient preservation and pathogen destruction in faecal matter: Report on ongoing research in Ghana (PDF, 286 KB)
Germer, J. Centre for Agriculture in the Tropics and Subtropics, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany

13) Urine diverting dehydration toilets to harness nutrients: An estimation for Ghana  (PDF, 218 KB)
Germer, J. Centre for Agriculture in the Tropics and Subtropics, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany

14) Material cycles in ecologically sustainable sanitation: The Accra experience, Ghana (PDF, 350 KB)
Germer, J. Centre for Agriculture in the Tropics and Subtropics, University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany

15) Accessible water and sanitation facilities by and for disabled people (PDF, 276 KB)
Hannan, MD. Bangladesh Protibandhi Kallayan Somity (BPKS), Dhaka, Bangladesh

16) Pit latrines and their impact on groundwater in small towns in Uganda - A case of Bugiri Town Council (PDF, 234 KB)
Kabongo, I. Ecological Christian Organisation (ECO), Kampala, Uganda

17) Origin of nitrate in shallow groundwater in Teungku Dilaweueng, Aceh Province, Indonesia (PDF, 702 KB)
Krekeler, T. Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), Hannover, Germany

18) Natural attenuation of an urban CHC-plume – prediction results (PDF, 374 KB)
Kringel, R. Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), Hannover, Germany

19) Anthropogenic pollution characteristics and impacts on shallow groundwater in a peri-urban settlement in Kampala, Uganda and solutions for prevention (PDF, 838 KB)
Kulabako, R.N. Dept. of Civil Engineering, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda

20) East Bank effluent re-use study 4-monitoring of groundwater contamination as affected by crop irrigation with secondary groundwater contamination (PDF, 893 KB)
Lateef, E.M.A.E. Field Crop Research Department, National Research Centre, Cairo, Egypt Cairo

21) Low-cost technologies based on heterogeneous photocatalysis and zerovalent iron for arsenic removal in the Chacopampean plain, Argentina (PDF, 111 KB)
Litter, M.I. Gerencia Química, Comisión Nacional de Energía Atómica, Buenos Aires, Argentina

22) Sustainable urban drainage system for Barangay Bonbon, Cagayan de Oro, Philippines (PDF, 564 KB)
Lo, D.S. XU Engineering Resource Center, Xavier University, Cagayan de Oro, Philippines

23) Safeguarding the water supply of Beirut - Protection of the Jeita Spring (PDF, 257 KB)
Makki, I. Agriculture and Environment Dept., Council for Development and Reconstruction, Beirut (BCD), Libanon

24) Assessment of sustainable sanitation and protection of the groundwater aquifers (PDF, 869 KB)
Mbackeh, H. Dept. of Water Resources, Banjul, Gambia

25) New sanitation concepts for condominium housing: Urine-diverting dry toilets in multi-storey buildings in Ethiopia (PDF, 101 KB)
Meinzinger, F. Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH), Germany

26) Water point hygiene and good sanitary practices - key to groundwater protection. A case study from Zambia (PDF, 80 KB)
Mishra, M. Water Aid Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia

27) Water safety plan and protection for sustainable underground water resources (PDF, 548 KB)
Mojtabaei, M. Fanavar Pajoheash Pooya, Mashhad, Iran

28) Impact of two different on-site sanitation solutions on human health risks associated with the aquifer pathway and exposure to pathogens from shallow water supply wells (PDF, 76 KB)
Molin, S. Dept. of Land and Water Resources Engineering, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden

29) Contamination of ground water in Bwaise slums - a challenge to the developing parts of Uganda (PDF, 610 KB)
Musiige, R. Hunger Free World, Kampala, Uganda

30) Living organisms, cysts and gastrointestinal parasites eggs in wells and spring water used by the populations in the city of Dschang, Cameroon (PDF, 127 KB)
Ndounla, J. Faculty of Sciences, University of Dschang, Cameroon

31) Combining waste water infrastructure, nutrient recycling and urban landscape development in Le Binh, Can Tho, Vietnam (PDF, 2.1 MB)
Nemcova, E. & Wust, C. Faculty of Architecture and Landscape Science, Leibniz University Hanover, Germany

32) Sanitation practices and their potential influence on groundwater quality in Lusaka (PDF, 1.1 MB)
Nkhouwa, D.C.W. School of Mines, University of Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia

33) Impacts of low sanitation to groundwater resources in some parts of Dar Es Salaam City, Tanzania (PDF, 170 KB)
Nkotagu, H.H. Geology Dept., University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania

34) Retention of Escherichia coli and Salmonella sp by two soil layers closely topping groundwater table in equatorial region in Cameroon (PDF, 115 KB)
Nola, M. Laboratory of General Biology, Faculty of Science, University of Yaounde I, Cameroon

35) Environmental sanitation and groundwater resources of the developing economy of parts of southeastern Nigeria: Implications and sustainable containment approches (PDF, 226 KB)
Okoro, E.I. Dept. of Geological Sciences, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Nigeria
currently not available, please send us an email for the poster

36) Behaviour of three pharmaceuticals in soil applied by urine fertilisation (PDF, 178 KB)
Otterpohl, R. Institute for Wastewater Management and Water Protection, Hamburg University of Technology, Germany

37) Groundwater contamination due to sanitation problems and it’s relation to soil characteristics (case study in Denipitiya, Sri Lanka) (PDF, 271 KB)
Piyadasa, R.U.K. Dept. of Geography, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka

38) Elimination of emerging pollutants in membrane bioreactors (MBR) and soil-aquifer-treatment (SAT) (PDF, 131 KB)
Schmidt, N. Water Technology Center (TZW), Karlsruhe, Germany

39) Reinventing waterscape urbanism, Changde, China (PDF, 1.3 MB)
Stokman, A. Faculty of Architecture and Landscape Science, Leibniz University Hanover, Germany

40) Development of molecular biological tools to monitor virus elimination in waste water reuse (PDF, 204 KB)
Tiehm, A. Water Technology Center (TZW), Karlsruhe, Germany

41) Jordan experience in watershed management (Qairwan Spring at Jarrash Governorate Case) (PDF, 240 KB)
Uleimat, A.A. Water Quality Resources Protection Dept., Water Authority of Jordan, Amman, Jordan

42) Groundwater protection as important component of an IWRM - experiences from central northern Namibia (PDF, 154 KB)
Umlauf, N. Institute WAR, Technical University Darmstadt, Germany

43) Impact of untreated sewage infiltration on metalloid cycle in shallow aquifer: Case study with implications for SE' Asia (PDF, 2.5 MB)   
Wagner, F. Federal Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources (BGR), Hannover, Germany

44) Design of low cost water recycle system in a small scale food industry to overcome groundwater shortage (PDF, 871 KB)
Wiloso, E.I. Research Center for Chemsitry, Indonesian Institute of Sciences, Tangerang, Indonesia

45) Artificial groundwater recharge in Jordan using various water qualities - Large scale potential map and individual test sites in Jordan (PDF, 229 KB)
Wolf, L. Dept. for Applied Geology, University of Karlsruhe, Germany

Share this page on    

Follow us on    

SuSanA Partners  currently 400 partners

Show all partners »

Networks Circle


Latest SuSanA Blog Articles

  • 05-07-2024Lourdes Valenzuela:
    Brasilia June 2024: SIRWASH Dialogues: Public Policies for Economic Accessibility to Rural Water and Sanitation Services in the Context of Latin American and Caribbean Countries »
  • 11-06-2024 Ann Thomas:
    Nature Calls – why sanitation is the logical starting point for fighting climate change »
  • 07-05-2024Jeremy Kohlitz,Kaiea Ribanataake Awira,Ngaouea Neemia:
    Can Kiritimati become a model circular economy society? Water and sanitation as potential entry points »
  • 26-03-2024Alice Brandt ,Mascha Kaddori:
    Let’s get wild: Water, sanitation and hygiene at the human-wildlife interface »
  • 21-03-2024Tabeer Riaz:
    Empowering Young Women Water Professionals in South Asia: Leading the Wave of Change »
  • 12-03-2024Beauty Mkoba:
    Unlocking the potential of African Women in STEM through mentorship »
  • 08-03-2024Gloria Mariga :
    Mentorship empowers African women to lead environmental stewardship »

SuSanA Blog »

SuSanA newsletter

Stay informed about the activities of SuSanA and its partners. The SuSanA newsletter is sent out around four times per year. It contains information about news, events, new partners, projects, discussions and publications of the SuSanA network.

Subscribe to newsletter »




Resources and publications

Our library has more than 3,000 publications, factsheets, presentations, drawings etc. from many different organisations. It continues to grow thanks to the contributions from our partners.

Add item to library »

The three links below take you to special groups of items in the library for more convenient access:


The project database contains nearly 400 sanitation projects of many different organizations dealing with research, implementation, advocacy, capacity development etc. Advanced filtering functions and a global map are also available. Information on how and why this database was created is here.

People working for SuSanA partners can add their own projects through their partner profile page. You might need your SuSanA login upgraded for this purpose. Please contact us if you would like to add a project.

Trainings, conference and events materials

Missed important conferences or courses? Catch up by using their materials for self study. These materials have been kindly provided by SuSanA partners.

Shit flow diagrams, excreta flow diagrams (310 SFDs worldwide)

Shit flow diagrams (SFDs) help to visualize excreta management in urban settings. Access SFDs and more through the SFD Portal.

Emersan eCompendium

Humanitarian Sanitation Hub

Sanitation Workers Knowledge and Learning Hub




Discussion forum

Share knowledge, exchange experiences, discuss challenges, make announcements, ask questions and more. Hint: Your discussion forum login is the same as your SuSanA login. More about the forum's philosophy »

Integrated content

We are hosting content from some other communities of practice and information-sharing portals. This section also provides a link to SuSanA's Sanitation Wikipedia initiative.

Suggest content to add »

SuSanA partners

Not yet a SuSanA partner? Show your organisation's support to SuSanA's vision and engage in  knowledge sharing by becoming partners.

Apply to become a partner »

Individual membership

Register as an individual member of SuSanA free of charge. As a member you can interact with thousands of sanitation enthusiasts on the discussion forum.  You can also get engaged in one of our 13 working groups and our regional chapters. Our FAQs explain the benefits further.

By getting a SuSanA login you can fully participate in the SuSanA community!

Register as a member


Forgot your password?
Forgot your username?