Putting the support and empowerment of women, civil society, youth, Indigenous peoples, people with disabilities, and the most vulnerable and marginalized communities at the heart of the Race to Resilience is critical to ensuring a just and effective global climate action, says Hajrah Waqas, Climate Champions’ Resilience Youth Fellow.
Banka BioLoo: The company supporting access to clean sanitation in rural India
Location & Region: India, Asia
Partner: Resilience First
Implementers: Banka BioLoo
Area and sector: Rural/ water and sanitation, technology
The climate crisis is heightening inequalities. Vulnerable populations on the frontlines of climate impacts are often those already suffering from difficult living conditions, such as poverty and limit access to natural resources. For instance, water scarcity and extreme weather events such as droughts and heat waves, can exacerbate disparities and impede access to water and sanitation, directly increasing the risk of water contamination and proliferation of pathogens and diseases.
To date, in India alone, around 50 million people continue to be unable to access proper sanitation. In rural India, only 50% of schools have adequate toilets for boys and girls affecting access to education. Moreover, lack of sanitation disproportionately impacts children under two years old, who account for 13% of all deaths per year by diarrhoea linked to water-borne diseases caused by poor sanitation and open-air defecation.
The climate crisis and its effects on water scarcity is already impeding advancement of sanitation that relies on traditional resource-consuming sewage infrastructure. Despite the magnitude of the challenge, the social enterprise Banka BioLoo, partner to Resilience First and Race to Resilience, is determined to reach remote India with sanitation using innovative climate-friendly technology.
The Banka BioLoo bio-toilets are affordable, easy to install, required very little maintenance and have a life span of 35 years. The bio-toilets consist of a bio-digester tank attached to a toilet seat with a pre-fabricated shelter. One single Bio-toilet can reduce 90% of solid waste as it does not require a septic tank or external sewage, while at the same time is capable of generating recycled water suitable for gardening, and colourless, odourless biogas that can be used as energy for activities like cooking or heating.
Banka BioLoo has installed 10,000 bioloos in 22 Indian states over the last eight years and has made a core part of its purpose to increase the education of people through capacity-building programs that build the understanding of the nexus between good hygiene, health and the environment.
“Our bio-digester technology makes it possible for users to manage waste on site and reduce dependency on resource-consuming sewage infrastructure while decreasing the risk of sanitation-related diseases” Banka BioLoo.
The company is also championing efforts to improve the quality of life and dignity of children. Banka BioLoo has provided 1,500 schools with bio-toilets across India. This support has led to an increase in health conditions for school children, the reduction of waterborne diseases, a major cause of mortality among children, and the increase in school attendance of girls during their menstruation cycle, as adequate access to sanitation allows female students to better manage their menstrual health.
“The biggest opportunities for value creation must include developing sustainable strategies and outcomes”. Sanjay Banka, Executive Chairman Banka BioLoo Limited.
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