Toilet Board Coalition to host Global Sanitation Economic Summit in Pune, India

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India, November 14, 2019: On the occasion of World Toilet Day, Geneva-based Toilet Board Coalition (TBC) is hosting the Global Sanitation Economic Summit in Pune, India, from November 18, 2019, to November 21, 2019. The summit will provide business, investment and sanitation leaders at the forefront of the global Sanitation Economy with a platform to deliberate upon Sanitation Economy solutions for various industries, citizens and development agendas.

The summit’s inauguration will feature eminent keynote speakers including Secretary P. Iyer, Ministry of Water and Sanitation, Government of India; Cheryl Hicks, Executive Director and CEO, Toilet Board Coalition; and Rajendra Jagtap, CEO, Pune Smart City. Delegates will include representatives from prominent entities like Tata Trusts, Unilever, Kalyani Group, Lixil, Kimberly-Clark, Veolia, Firmenich and USAID as well as Indian Smart Cities.

The event’s panel discussions will see leading sectoral experts touch upon various topics, including ‘India leading the way in business innovation & WASH’; How the Sanitation Economy approach becomes a part of mitigating water risk for companies and governments; How the Circular Economy, applied to sanitation, becomes a solution provider for agriculture and consumer goods industries’ and ‘Sanitation solutions for a resource constrained world’ (detailed agenda appended).

Speaking about the summit, Cheryl Hicks, CEO and Executive Director, Toilet Board Coalition, said, “Sanitation is a net contributor to human-rights, new resources, and data with vast opportunities for business and society. Companies hold the potential to transform sanitation systems from an unaffordable cost into delivery systems for renewable resources and information about human-health and behaviour – critical to future business growth. Applying Sanitation Economy approaches that are circular and digitised enables new solutions for water security, energy security, food security and health. With Sanitation Economy approaches, the current cost of providing sanitation can be reduced from about USD 200 per person to a net value of USD 10 per person. We call on fellow business leaders to join us in mobilising business leadership to scale up the Sanitation Economy 2020-2025.

Through the summit, the Coalition will focus on the rising population and corresponding demand for robust sanitation systems and policies, and how this creates waste-to-value opportunities for multiple applications, including energy products, agricultural products and water recovery. This is an opportunity to create a sustainable waste management cycle wherein data-driven sanitation helps increase efficiency and cost reduction while repurposing the waste for further use in the economy. According to the Coalition, any company that seeks to lead on issues of sustainability and purpose must incorporate the circular sanitation economy as an integral part of their business.

Key Statistics- Water and sanitation infrastructure in cities could be worth at least $12 trillion a year in market opportunities and develop up to 380 million new jobs by 2030 - The Smart Cities Mission in India has committed $908 million to the treatment of toilet resource and wastewater- In Pune there is an estimated market of $42 million for re-use products (fuel, fertiliser and water) by 2020-2021- 15.6 million people working in the tea sector produce 7.8 billion litres of toilet resources every year, which could be converted into 13 trillion MJ of biofuel, 2 trillion MJ of biogas and 2 million tonnes of compost - Description: Text Box 2

The Sanitation Economy approaches provide three path-ays to scale:

  • Smart Toilets: Public and community toilets optimized by environmental, usage and health sensors to communicate valuable sanitation intelligence to operators and cities
  • Smart Treatment: Collecting and treating toilet resources, creating value-added products such as renewable energy and organic fertilizers
  • Tech Enabling Smart Health: Connecting information from sanitation systems to people making decisions at treatment plants, government regulators and healthcare organizations