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Just one issue of overpopulated prisons July 16, 2010

Posted by WaterWise Consulting in Water & Business, water conservation, Water Footprint, Water Pollution, Water Reuse.
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Just about everybody knows about prisons and how overpopulated they are. Some prisons are even being run at double-capacity, unable to sustain themselves without help. As a result of this overcrowding, there is twice as much garbage being produced as well as twice as much human waste. Since the facilities are seldom upgraded to handle the entire prison population, many prisons are forced to “look the other way” while equipment functions above save levels, or as sewage spills over containment systems.
One innovative prison in Kenya is using natural solutions to fix the problems of excess waste. Shimo la Tewa prison in Mombasa, Kenya is implementing a sanitation project to purify and neutralize the inmates’ waste. The prison is creating an artificial wetland to purify the sewage. The resulting products from this sewage treatment could be used to irrigate farms or even create fish farms. This would help the economy by giving inmates tasks to complete; as well as the ability to sell produce in a market and generate income.
Surprisingly enough, artificial wetlands are incredibly cost-effective where viable. In Kenya, the system would cost as little as $110,000-a mere $25 per person served. Sewage-related illnesses cause as many as 4 million man hours to be lost per year. This is approximately $16 billion per year, a number that dwarves the cost of a sanitation system.
On top of the saved money from treatment, these artificial ecosystems are expected to create a large amount of habitat for local species. Income produced by the sewage system is expected to be about $50,000 annually.
http://www.waterwise-consulting.com
boneill@waterwise-consulting.com

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