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Portable Alternative Sanitation System (PASS)
CCHRC worked with the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium and Lifewater Engineering to develop an affordable solution for villages without running water. Alaska has more than 3,000 housholds without piped water and sewer, where residents go to the bathroom in buckets and drink untreated water. These conditions lead to elevated rates of illness and skin disease.
ANTHC and CCHRC designed an innovative water-sewer system that improves health at a much lower cost than piped water and sewer. The design includes a 100-gallon water tank, pump, and filtration system. Residents can haul water into the home from a source of their choice (a water treatment plant, lake ice or rainwater) and pump the water into the 100-gallon tank, using a manual hand pump or an electric pump. In 2015, ten prorotype systems were installed in Kivalina , a vlllage on the Chukchi Sea coast.
Honey buckets were replaced by waterless toilets that separate solids and liquids. Solids settle into a compartment inside the toilet and are dried by a fan. The dried patty can be burned in the stove. Liquids are collected in a tank underneath the toilet and can be emptied or plumbed into an underground filtration system.
The goal of this project was to test a new sanitation in Kivalina and provide an option for clean water throughout rural Alaska.
See a diagram of the system here.
See ANTHC's full report on the project here.
In 2017 CCHRC and ANTHC are collaborating on phase 2 of the project which will install updated PASS systems in homes in Allakaket, Alatna, and Chalkyitsik.