Improved Toilets Create Healthy and Clean Living in Mongolia

Video | 4 December 2019

Basic, open-pit latrines pollute the soil and groundwater and damage the health of communities. ADB, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is providing more sanitary water-tight pit latrines for a total of 330 homes in Mongolia's Arvaikheer city, in the Uvurkhangai province.

A $1 million-technical assistance project is testing improved management and reuse of decentralized fecal sludge and providing decent toilets to local residents.

Transcript

Uvurkhangai province, Mongolia - In 2018, 99% of surveyed households in Arvaikheer city used basic, soil-polluting pit latrines.

“The bad smell in our old open pit latrine attracted flies and there was always a high risk of spreading diseases. There’s no smell and the soil isn’t contaminated any more thanks to our new toilets,” says Regzen Davaadorj, Resident of Arvaikheer city.

ADB, with a $1 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has piloted more sanitary water-tight pit latrines for 80 homes in Arvaikheer city.

A special truck empties the latrine and takes the waste to the new wastewater treatment plant built with ADB funding.

“Since we got the new latrine, we have planted vegetables and more than ten fruit trees in the healthy soil. We’ve been able to grow enough to feed the whole family,” Otgonsuren Dashiitsoodol, Resident of Arvaikheer city.

“Children are happy playing outside where the air is fresh and the environment is clean. And we don’t need to worry any more about kids accidentally falling into a cesspit when they are playing. Life would definitely be much more pleasant if all houses had improved pit latrines,” explains Erdenechimeg Onkhortsagaan, Kindergarten Teacher.

“This year, we are solving the toilet problem for 250 more households thanks to the commitment of all parties involved. Half of the financing is covered by ADB, 40% from our provincial budget, and about 10% paid by the residents themselves,” says Ganbold Gochoo, Governor of Uvurkhangai Province.