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Issue 3, 2017
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How sociopolitical factors affected the implementation of Cape Town's vacuum sewer

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Abstract

Installed in an informal settlement, South Africa's first vacuum sewer failed immediately after its commissioning. Dissent from municipal officials and residents alike collectively contributed to the system's dysfunction. The failed vacuum sewer is emblematic of the limitations of technology-driven approaches in informal settlements, as well as the fallibility of popular policy assumptions about integrated planning and collective community management. It highlights the need to apply multidisciplinary approaches in sanitation delivery, whereby the often-conflicting political aspects of development are confronted in order to provide and sustain basic services in informal settlements.

Graphical abstract: How sociopolitical factors affected the implementation of Cape Town's vacuum sewer

  • This article is part of the themed collection: Sanitation
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Publication details

The article was received on 17 Apr 2016, accepted on 09 Mar 2017 and first published on 09 Mar 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C6EW00089D
Citation: Environ. Sci.: Water Res. Technol., 2017,3, 513-519
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    How sociopolitical factors affected the implementation of Cape Town's vacuum sewer

    L. Taing, Environ. Sci.: Water Res. Technol., 2017, 3, 513
    DOI: 10.1039/C6EW00089D

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