What are the options for controlling excreta?

For practical purposes sanitation can be divided into on-site and off-site technologies.

  • On-site disposal: On-site systems (e.g. latrine/toilets) store and/or treat excreta at the point of generation, include: ventilated improved pit (VIP) latrine/toilets pour-flush toilets, and septic tanks.
  • Off-site disposal: In off-site systems (e.g. sewerage) excreta is transported to another location for treatment, disposal or use.  In more densely packed areas sewerage systems are frequently used to transport wastes off-site where they can be treated and disposed.
  • Wastewater and Excreta Treatment: Waste needs to be treated to remove or inactivate pathogens before it can be safely reused or disposed of safely. Many on-site waste disposal methods treat excreta by storing it for enough time to kill the pathogens. Most off-site strategies (and some on-site systems) require wastes to be treated at a facility before it can be safely used or released into the environment.

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