SNAPP: Water Sanitation and Nature

Principal Investigator(s): 

Katharine Cross

There are 2.4 billion people living without sufficient sanitation to separate them from their biological waste. For another 2.1 billion, wastewater drains directly into surface waters. Despite improvements over past decades, unsafe management of fecal waste and wastewater still presents a major risk to public health and the environment.

There are various natural solutions which can be part of wastewater treatment systems, supporting the removal of wastewater contaminants such as bacteria, heavy metals and high levels of nutrients. These include: constructed and natural wetlands, wastewater treatment ponds and soil infiltration systems, and green roofs and vertical gardens.

The working group is developing an evidence based guidance document which assesses both the technical feasibility and practicality of placing effective nature-based sanitation solutions in diverse local and cultural contexts. The aim is to provide information which can inform investment and resource use in operation and maintenance of sanitation services which serves both human and ecosystem health.

This team is made possible in part by the generous support and engagement of the Bridge Collaborative, uniting experts in health, development and the environment to create the evidence and opportunity to solve big problems for people and the world we share.

More information for project participants Visit the SNAPP website