Sanitary landfill

An advanced landfill with engineering measures to prevent the escape of leachate and collect the landfill gas (10)


Prevention of human contact with wastes; the provision of facilities and services for the safe disposal of human excreta (1)

Sanitation ladder

Measure of progress towards the provision of adequate sanitation facilities for every household (1)

Sanitation marketing

An approach to household sanitation promotion that aims to improve sanitation standards by encouraging people’s demand for sanitation products and services (13)

Sanitation platform

Cast concrete or plastic latrine slab that is safe for children and convenient for adults, and has footrests (5)

Secondary collection

Collection of solid waste from transfer stations for transport to the final disposal site (9)

Secondary treatment

Stage in sewage treatment where aerobic micro-organisms break down organic material (6)

Semi-structured interview

An interview with a set of topics and questions for discussion that develops according to responses given (3)

Septic tank

Underground, watertight tank in which sewage is collected and partially treated before discharge (5)

Services (sanitation)

The entire scheme for providing sanitation (facilities, maintenance, waste treatment, finance) (1)

Settleable solids

Solid particles in wastewaters that settle out when the flow rate is reduced (4)


Combined wastewater from all sources; includes blackwater, greywater and stormwater (1)


Underground pipes that carry sewage; ditches containing sewage may be described as open sewers (4)


Network or system of sewers (4)

Shared sanitation facilities

Latrine used by more than one family/household (1)

Slow-onset disaster

Disaster that unfolds over time as a result of events, such as drought and famine (14)

Sludge gulper

Type of hand-operated pump for desludging pit latrines (6)


Pit where liquid effluent, typically from a septic tank, is allowed to soak into the ground

Soil improver

Product such as compost that makes soil more productive and resistant to drought (8)

Solid waste

All the discarded solid wastes arising from human activities (1)


An individual, organisation or group that has an interest in something, e.g. a situation, project, process or activity (11)


Rainwater that collects on the ground and runs off into channels, ditches and rivers and may carry pollutants with it (1)

Structured interview

Interview based only on a set of questions drawn up before the start (3)

Subjective (assessment)

Assessment based on the investigator’s personal experience and views, which will vary between individuals (3)


Another term for greywater (1)

Suspended solids

Solid particles in wastewaters that do not settle out when the liquid is left to stand; in flowing water, this includes solids that are carried in the flow (4)


Concept describing effective and long-lasting projects and other interventions that have given consideration to economic, social and environmental factors. in iswm, it is a principle stating that the waste management system must be capable of operating in the long term, mimimising the use of non-renewable resources and not causing pollution problems that will need to be dealt with by future generations (11)

Sustainable drainage systems (SUDs)

Range of techniques to reduce the speed of flow of surface run-off, encourage its infiltration into the ground, and reduce the risk of flooding (6)

Last modified: Sunday, 2 October 2016, 1:56 PM