Towards a National Definition of Access to Water Supply and Sanitation




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Towards a National Definition of Access to Water Supply and Sanitation

Measuring Access to Safe Drinking Water and Adequate Sanitation in Accordance to the Bill of Rights of the New Constitution and

the Vision 2030 Planning Strategy

1Rationale


In 2010 Kenya enacted its new Constitution. The Constitution stipulates that: “Every person has the right/…/to reasonable standards of sanitation” and “to clean and safe water in adequate quantities“ (See: The Constitution of Kenya; Chapter Four, Bill of Rights; Part 2: Rights and fundamental freedoms; Economic and social rights, Section 43).

In addition to the inclusion of the right to safe water and adequate sanitation in the new Constitution, Kenya has adopted the “International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights” (WHO; 2003), which includes human rights to water and sanitation. The emphasis on human rights obliges the Water Sector, and the Ministry of Water and Irrigation (MWI) in particular, to adopt and adapt these important principles and to harmonize its monitoring systems and align them to the new Constitution.

By adoption its Vision 2030 national planning strategy, Kenya has expressed its ambition to improve the standards of living and the quality of life of its citizens and to become a middle income country by the year 2030 (Kenya Vision 2030, The Popular Version; 1). Achieving these objectives is impossible without the provision of affordable and regulated services of high quality; i.e. access to drinking water that meets the highest standards as well as access to sustainable and safe sanitation facilities. In fact, the sustainable provision of basic services, such as safe water and adequate sanitation, has a very significant and positive impact upon public health and, therefore, can be seen as a prerequisite for the economic and social development of a country as well as for the creation of a better environment.1

Consequently, monitoring procedures and tools must be adjusted and adopted to enable the Sector to measure if, and to which extent, its water supply and sanitation interventions (i.e. projects and programmes) contribute to the increased (adequate) access required to achieve higher living standards.

Monitoring tools should be anchored in a set of criteria that can be used to define and measure adequate access. The following criteria are important: a) physical access (e.g. access roads and the safety and user-friendliness of the infrastructure), b) availability (continuous, sufficient), c) quality (safe water, ), d) hygienic condition (cleanliness), e) affordability (tariff) and f) acceptability (design, cultural). Furthermore, human rights to water are usually measured using the following general criteria: g) non-discrimination, h) accountability, i) participation and j) sustainability.2 Thus, meeting human rights objectives requires defining technical design standards as well as service delivery (including transparency, sustainability and participation) and infrastructure operation standards.

Currently, reported access figures are not based on criteria which are uniform for the entire Kenyan Water Sector and which are compatible with international definitions of access and supply coverage.3 In other words, reporting on access is insufficient and lacks the coherence and uniformity needed to measure progress at national level. The absence of nationally accepted monitoring tools and procedures also prevents the alignment of national monitoring with the JMP (the Joint Monitoring Program of UNICEF and the WHO) MDG monitoring program and the access definitions which are being developed for the post 2015 period.

The Constitution emphasises the right of every person to “reasonable standards of sanitation” and the right to “clean and safe water in adequate quantities”. It is the obligation of the Sector to provide the nationally accepted standards and definitions as well as the tools to measure to what extent interventions contribute to the fulfillment of these rights. (See: The Constitution of Kenya; Section 43).

2Need for Making a Distinction between Rural and Urban Settings


Living conditions are to a large extent determined by population densities.

Administrative and census enumeration boundaries may be used for labeling areas as being either rural or urban. Often, however, these boundaries have not been established on the basis of population density levels. Population density is, however, a key aspect do not urban or rural do not follow population density.

The suitability, from a public health perspective, of WSS service delivery approaches and technologies, is highly determined by local population densities. Whereas a hand pump or a protected yard well may be the most appropriate solution for a rural setting with low to moderate population densities, this technology may be unsuitable for urban areas characterized by high population densities and the resulting proximity of wells, dwellings and latrines. With growing population densities the risk of ground and surface water pollution and, therefore, also the contamination of wells and boreholes, increases substantially. Different technologies require different management, service delivery and O&M approaches in order to attain sustainability. Whereas water supply in a rural community can, in most cases, be managed and maintained by the community and local technicians, sustainable urban water supply requires the input provided by a specialised and professional organisation; a licensed service provider.

The decision with regard to which sources/outlets are improved and which ones are unimproved should be based upon local population densities. If local (area) population density exceeds 400 persons per km2, an area has to be considered urban (See WSTF; 2010). Although urban areas can be identified by consulting KNBS data – i.e. the population densities of sub-locations – it is preferable to use a more refined and sector-oriented area-focused database such as MajiData. MajiData is the sector’s database on urban low income areas (See WSTF, 2010: Adequate Access, Coverage and Technical Standards (Discussion Paper) Part I, Background Document: 22).


3Improved and Unimproved Water Sources for Rural and Urban Settings


The following water supply options are considered to be improved water sources or outlets for urban and rural areas:

Type of water source/outlet (X = improved facility)

Improved facility (water supply)

WASREB

JMP

Urban areas

Rural areas

All areas

Piped water into dwelling, plot or yard supplied by licensed WSPs (1)

X

X

X

Piped water into dwelling, plot or yard supplied by ISP or (Cat. 2) WSPs (4)




X

X

Public tap/standpipe,(2) water provided by licensed WSPs (1) (3)

X

X

X

Public tap/standpipe, water provided by licensed ISP or community group




X

X

Tube well/borehole




X

X

Protected dug well




X

X

Protected spring




X

X

Rainwater collection




X

X

Unprotected dug well










Unprotected spring










Cart with small tank/drum










Tanker truck










Bottled water










Surface water (river, dam, lake, pond, stream, canal, irrigation channels)










1): According to the 2002 Water Act; 2): Including water kiosk; 3): Including prepaid public tap; 4): Reporting to WASREB.

People using improved sources shall be counted as being “covered”. The use of all other sources (see table) can be assumed to pose a significant risk to individual- and public health. Some sources can only be seen as acceptable sources of water during emergency situations (including periods of prolonged supply interruption). Sources, such as tanker trucks, are no long-term solutions as they are not in line with the Vision 2030 strategy to move to a higher standard of living.



It is important to mention that local conditions in rural settings – e.g. the water table, soil conditions, frequent flooding and uneven distribution of the population resulting in high population densities in micro settings – may render some water supply and sanitation options (e.g. hand pumps, protected yard wells, improved pit latrines) to be unsuitable. In these settings the urban list of improved options has to be adopted.

4Improved and Unimproved Sanitation Facilities for Rural and Urban Settings


The following table shows the improved sanitation facilities for urban and rural areas:

Type of sanitation facility/practice (X = improved facility)

Improved facility (sanitation)

WASREB

JMP

Urban areas

Rural areas

All areas

Flush or pour flush to piped sewer system (not shared by more than 10 pers.)


X (4)

X

X

Flush or pour flush to septic tank (not shared by more than 10 persons)


X

X

X

Flush or pour flush to pit latrine (not shared by more than 10 persons)

X

X

X

Flush or pour-flush to piped sewer system (plot-level, shared by max. 10 persons)


X

X




Flush or pour flush to septic tank (plot-level, shared by max. 10 persons)


X

X




Flush or pour flush to pit latrine (plot-level, shared by max. 10 persons)


X

X




Public sanitation facility (1)

X

X




Ventilated improved pit latrine (VIP)


X

X

X

Pit latrine with slab and composting toilet

X

X

X

Flush of pour flush to elsewhere (2)










Pit latrine without slab, hanging toilet or hanging latrine










Bucket or peepoo bags










No facility or use of bush or field, flying toilets (3)










1): Only an improved sanitation facility in certain urban settings such as urban slums with very high population densities (See WSTF 2010: Section 6.6.1). Improved, according to WASREB, also implies that the sludge, excreta and/or compost are managed in a sustainable and environmentally- and public health-friendly manner; 2): E.g. excreta are flushed to the street, yard or plot, open sewer, a ditch, a drainage way or other location; 3): In rural areas with very low population densities open defecation or “cat system” defecation may not pose a risk to public health and to the environment; 4): The fact that a sanitation facility is improved does not imply that the sludge, excreta and/or compost are managed in a sustainable and environmentally- and public health-friendly manner.

In rural areas the criteria for sludge disposal/management can be less stringent as compared to urban criteria as long as they are approved by WASREB (i.e. public health risks are acceptable).

All other sanitation facilities and practices (see table), such as “pour flush to elsewhere” (i.e. excreta are flushed to the street, yard or plot, open sewer, a ditch, a drainage way or other location), cannot be considered improved sanitation solutions in line with the Government’s aspiration to achieve higher standards of living.

5Counting People with Adequate Access to Water


To calculate the number of people with adequate access and coverage rates at all levels (WSP, WSB, and national level), it is not only necessary to list the improved water sources/outlets and sanitation facilities, but also to determine how many people can be adequately served by these outlets and facilities. The following figures are have been determined on the basis of measurements (e.g. time spent on fetching and waiting at the kiosk, number of users of public sanitation facilities, average per capita water consumption levels, etc.) (WSTF; 2011). 4

The maximum number of adequately served persons per improved water supply source/outlet is as follows:



Type of connection

Additional characteristics

No. of persons adequately served

Remarks

1

Individual connection

Indoor plumbing

10

This is the estimated number of people using a domestic connection

2

Plot-level connection

Yard tap (one tap)

30

Figure based on average plot population size

3

Public stand post

Equipped with 1 tap

400

Improved public stand posts only

4

Prepaid public stand post

Equipped with 1 tap

400

Improved prepaid public stand posts only

5

Water kiosk (closed or open)

Equipped with 3 taps

1,200

Assuming a consumption of 8l/c/d

6

Non-domestic connection

Irrelevant

0

A commercial or institutional connection (etc.)

7

Protected well or spring

-

50

Rural areas only!

According to the 2002 Water Act, people being served by informal service providers (no regular testing and reporting on water quality, charging non-regulated water prices, etc.) cannot be counted. In case a registered WSP delegates services to an ISP, customers of these services can only be counted as being covered, if the WSP is able to provide minimum standards and regulated services (regulated tariffs, non-discriminatory access, etc.).

The figures presented (see table) are compatible with the ranges used by WASREB for its coverage reporting. 5

People depending on neighbourhood sales and outlets on private land shall not be counted as these sources/outlets do not fulfil the criteria of non-discriminatory access.

For public outlets in rural areas only people shall be counted living within a 2 kilometre radius (500 metres in urban settings). Public water outlets and sources in flood prone areas shall not be counted.


6Counting People with Adequate Access to Sanitation


The maximum number of adequately served persons per improved sanitation facility, in both rural and urban areas is as follows:

Type of connection

No. of persons adequately served

Remarks

1

Household level sewer connection

10

-

2

Plot level sanitation facility

10

10 persons per unit (door)

3

Public sanitation

50

50 persons per unit (door)

Coverage calculations shall consider environmental and public health risks and objectives and, therefore, take, where possible, the entire sanitation chain into the analysis (e.g. a public sanitation facility can only be considered acceptable if emptying, transport, disposal and sludge treatment are existent and do not harm the environment and/or pose a threat to public health).

7Design Standards and Alignment of Sector Stakeholders


Meeting the above-mentioned higher standards of living also requires that water supply and sanitation infrastructure meet specific design criteria which render these facilities accessible, safe user-friendly, ergonomically sound and allows for easy cleaning. Water sector institutions, and the Water Services Trust Fund (WSTF) in particular, have developed a number of sound technical standards (technical drawings, construction guidelines, BoQs, etc.) for both water supply outlets and sanitation facilities. The WSTF, for instance, has developed, at the request of the MWI, improved water kiosks (open and closed, insitu and pre-fabricated), yard taps and public sanitation facilities. Currently the WSTF has started developing, together with renowned research institutions and the MoPHS, improved and sustainable plot-level sanitation facilities.

In order to improve the quality of service delivery and to render donor contributions and investments more (cost) effective, the MWI expects the developing partners (civil society and donors) to adopt these technical standards, or to improve on them.



8. Data Harmonisation

Currently, the Water Sector has access to and makes use of the data provided by the WSPs and WSBs as well as the data collected by the KNBS (i.e. data on water and sanitation collected with the Census and the KDHS).

Although WSS-related data collected by KNBS are important they have their limitations (e.g. the long inter-censal period of 10 years and the limited number of sector relevant data which is collected). The sector needs to have access to detailed WSS data and therefore requires its own data collection and progress monitoring procedures, tools and databases. Only through the collection of detailed sector data (e.g. on water quality, supply levels, type and status of infrastructure) and by linking sector datasets to other types of data (e.g. demographic data, population densities, area layouts, housing patterns, etc.), it becomes possible to efficiently plan WSS interventions and to monitor progress towards the achievement of the requirements stipulated in the Bill of Rights. MajiData (which will be launched in July 2011) provides area-level data on all urban low income areas in Kenya. A similar initiative targeting the rural areas (water point mapping) is in preparation. In order to reduce data gaps, to render databases compatible and to create synergy, there is need for close collaboration between the sector institutions and organisations like the KNBS. This collaboration should aim to create a set of nationally accepted definitions which include access, improved outlets and coverage.

List of Abbreviations


GDP: Gross Domestic Product

ISP: Informal service provider

JMP: Joint Monitoring Program

KDHS: Kenya Demographic health Survey

KNBS: Kenya National Bureau of Statistics

MDG: Millennium Development Goal

MoPHS: Ministry of Public Health and Sanitation

MWI: Ministry of Water and Irrigation

O&M: Operation and maintenance

UNICEF: United Nations Children’s Fund

VIP: Ventilated improved pit latrine

WASREB: Water Services Regulatory Board

WHO: World Health Organisation

WSB: Water Services Board

WSP: Water Service Provider

WSS: Water Supply and Sanitation

WSTF: Water Services Trust Fund

List of References Used


Government of the Republic of Kenya (2002) The Water Act, 2002, No. 8 of 2002 (Date of assent: 17th October 2002), Nairobi, Kenya.

Government of the Republic of Kenya (2007) Kenya Vision 2030, the Popular Version, Ministry of Planning and National Development, Nairobi, Kenya.

Government of the Republic of Kenya (2010) The Constitution of Kenya, Revised Edition 2010, Published by the National Council for Law Reporting with the Authority of the Attorney General, Nairobi, Kenya.

Water Services Trust Fund (2011) Adequate Access, Coverage and Technical Standards (Discussion Paper) PART I: Background Document, WSTF, Nairobi, Kenya.

Water Supply and Health, PLOS, November 2010, Volume No. 7.

Water Services Regulatory Board (2008) Drinking Water Quality and Effluent Monitoring Guideline. WASREB, Nairobi, Kenya.

World Health Organisation (2003) International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; Health and Human Rights, WHO, Geneva, Switzerland.

Internet Sites

WHO/UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme (JMP):



http://www.wssinfo.org/definitions-methods/introduction/

http://www.wssinfo.org/definitions-methods/watsan-categories/).

http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/gdwqrevision/vendedwater.pdf)

http://www.who.int/household_water/en/)

___________________________________



1 GDP growth per capita in developing countries with improved water supply and health (WSH) is higher (3,75%) than compared to countries with less performing water sectors (0,1%) (Water Supply and Health, PLOS, November 2010, Volume No. 7).

2 Meeting these criteria means: minimizing health risks and risk for the environment, easy access, an affordably tariff, and infrastructure built using a user-friendly design which considers cultural and religious aspects and provides security and reflects the basic needs and wishes of customers and operators.

3 E.g. the MDGs for water and sanitation Target 7c. Currently JMP only monitors access to water sources, without considering human rights criteria.

4 Number of persons per facility; daily quantities/person available; location, distance (max. 500metres), accessibility and waiting time at facility (pressure 17litres/min.); supply & business hours (at least 6days/week and 6 hours/day supply of water); water quality (guaranteed by the WSPs); tariff (approved by WASREB); technical standards (no. of taps/facility, user-friendliness, security, ability to keep the facility clean, etc.); quality of the service and customer care; environmental impact.

5 For urban: household between 5-9 persons, yard tap 20-50 persons and public outlets 100-500 persons per tap. The regulator still has to define its figures (ranges) for rural water supply.




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