Humans generate heaps of waste every day. Waste rich in energy, nutrients, or water. Most of it gets flushed down the drain, dumped in landfill sites, burned or even abandoned in public spaces or nature. Meanwhile, millions of farmers struggle with depleted soils and lack of water. A new 800-page book profiles multiple ways to harness this waste to help fill the world’s food and energy needs.
From 2011 to 2015, the Resource Recovery and Reuse project – implemented by the International Water Management Institute (IWMI) under the CGIAR Water, Land and Ecosystems research programme – analysed 110 waste-recovery businesses in order to establish guidelines for assessing, implementing and scaling up similar programmes.
The use of wastewater to irrigate crops is far more widespread than previously estimated, according to a new study, exposing hundreds of millions of people to health risks and posing a major environmental hazard.
In many parts of the world, the use of untreated wastewater for irrigation is more common than originally thought, exposing 884 million consumers to health risks. The study calls for urgent investment in improved sanitation and management.