Navigation Links
Additional research must be done to ensure safety of pit latrines, new study says
Date:3/21/2013

WASHINGTON, D.C.--Pit latrines are one of the most common human excreta disposal systems globally, and their use is on the rise as countries aim to meet the sanitation-related target of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Strong evidence supports the use of these basic toilets as a way to improve human health. However, improperly designed pit latrines can actually allow disease-causing microbes or other contaminants to leach into the groundwater. The contaminated water puts people, and especially children, at risk of developing potentially life-threatening diarrheal diseases.

A new study by Jay Graham, PhD, MBA, MPH, an assistant professor in the Department of Environmental and Occupational Health at the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services (SPHHS) in collaboration with Matthew Polizzotto of North Carolina State University first estimates the number of people worldwide that rely on pit latrines. The study goes on to identify some key knowledge gaps that could be addressed to keep the drinking water safe and protect the public.

Using survey data, the researchers calculated that an estimated 1.77 billion people around the globe use pit latrines, a step up from places that have no sanitation facilities. In the countries where pit latrines are common, the study suggests that more than 2 billion people rely on the groundwater for their primary source of drinking water. Despite the risk of widespread contamination of the water from improperly designed or poorly located pit latrines, the researchers found there are very few studies on this risk. Graham and Polizzotto reviewed the scientific literature and found that the studies that have been done on this topic are small and limited in scope.

The researchers conclude that much more needs to be done to identify technologies that can be used to protect the groundwater from contaminants coming from pit latrines. In addition, the team says that more work must be done to understand the impact of global warming on coastal areas of developing countries. If global warming results in flooding of regions relying on simple pit latrines the end result could be widespread contamination of the environment, Graham says.

"Poorly built pit latrines or those that are sited improperly can be a human health risk," Graham said. "Additional research could identify technologies and guidelines that might help developing countries build safer pit latrines."


'/>"/>

Contact: Kathy Fackelmann
kfackelmann@gwu.edu
202-994-8354
George Washington University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Warmer soils release additional CO2 into atmosphere; Effect stabilizes over longer term
2. Radiologists study necessity of additional imaging recommendations in PET/CT oncologic reports
3. Brain & Behavior Research Foundation awards nearly $4 million in new NARSAD grants
4. Obama calls Ben-Gurion U. brain research a great idea
5. Academy scientists receive top honors for long-term research and training initiatives in Mongolia
6. Impressive list of research teams for the 2013 HFSP Research Grants
7. John Moores gives $2 million to Scripps Research to develop river blindness field test
8. Researchers spot molecular control switch for preterm lung disorders
9. Ben-Gurion U. researchers and Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. develop psoriasis drug
10. AAOS awards recognize innovative orthopaedic research
11. IUPUI stem cell research could expand clinical use of regenerative human cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/19/2016)... UAE, April 20, 2016 The ... as a compact web-based "all-in-one" system solution for all ... fingerprint reader or the door interface with integration authorization ... access control systems. The minimal dimensions of the access ... into the building installations offer considerable freedom of design ...
(Date:4/14/2016)... , April 14, 2016 ... and Malware Detection, today announced the appointment of ... the new role. Goldwerger,s leadership appointment comes ... the heels of the deployment of its platform at ... behavioral biometric technology, which discerns unique cognitive and physiological ...
(Date:3/31/2016)...  Genomics firm Nabsys has completed a financial  restructuring ... , M.D., who returned to the company in October ... team, including Chief Technology Officer, John Oliver , ... and Vice President of Software and Informatics, Michael ... Dr. Bready served as CEO of Nabsys from 2005-2014 ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... MONICA, Calif. , June 23, 2016  The Prostate Cancer Foundation ... pioneer increasingly precise treatments and faster cures for prostate cancer. Members of the ... institutions across 15 countries. Read More About the Class ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016   EpiBiome , a ... $1 million in debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank ... automation and to advance its drug development efforts, as ... facility. "SVB has been an incredible strategic ... services a traditional bank would provide," said Dr. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ON (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... STACS ... DNA Technical Leader at the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory, has joined STACS DNA as ... the STACS DNA team,” said Jocelyn Tremblay, President and COO of STACS DNA. “In ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today ... trials of its complement C3 inhibitor, APL-2. The ... ascending dose studies designed to assess the safety, ... injection in healthy adult volunteers. Forty ... a single dose (ranging from 45 to 1,440mg) ...
Breaking Biology Technology: