Supporting waterless flush sanitation through mobile technology – Loowatt

Access to basic sanitation services is a major development and public health challenge in Madagascar where only 10 per cent of the population use at least basic sanitation services[1]. Providing basic sanitation is particularly challenging in Madagascar’s capital, Antananarivo, where high urban density and climate change pose significant challenges to waste and faecal sludge management.

In May 2015, Loowatt, a waterless sanitation service provider, received a grant from the GSMA M4D Utilities Innovation Fund to develop a mobile app to track its waste collection processes, collect payments with mobile money and communicate better with its customers. In May 2018, Loowatt received a second grant from the Innovation Fund as part of the Container Based Sanitation Alliance (CBSA) to help expand and improve its mobile app and web-based platform to support the efficient delivery of household sanitation services.  The mobile app enabled Loowatt to support the service and maintenance of 100 waterless household toilets. The toilets benefitted female customers in particular, who account for 70 per cent of Loowatt’s customer base. Collecting payments through mobile money instead of cash provided greater visibility into customer payment records and reduced operating costs by 15 to 25 per cent. As of August 2018, Loowatt’s toilets (across its operations in both Madagascar and the United Kingdom) have been used by over 100,000 customers and 200 tonnes of faecal sludge have been delivered to closed-loop treatment[2].

The GSMA Mobile for Development (M4D) Utilities programme is funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), USAID as part of its commitment to Scaling Off-Grid Energy Grand Challenge for Development and supported by the GSMA and its members.

[1] WHO/UNICEF JMP (2015),

[2] Loowatt (28 August 2018), “Fecal Sludge and Solid Waste: Filthy Traveling Companions”.

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