Water, Sanitation,

and Hygiene (WASH) Projects

The Standards Alliance's water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) projects work to strengthen the WASH sector globally by supporting a strong legal framework, improving implementation of plumbing codes, improving the efficiency of water utilities, and enhancing safe drinking water.

Active Regions: Latin America, Indo-Pacific, Middle East, and Africa

Project: Plumbing the Legal Depths — Creating a Pipeline between Legal Enabling and NQI
Implementers: Center for Water Security Cooperation (CWSC) and International Association of Plumbing & Mechanical Officials (IAPMO)

The Challenge:

There is a need to accelerate citizen’s access to water and sanitation services and facilitate the improvement of National Quality Infrastructure (NQI) as related to the water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) sector. Laws, regulations, policies, and standards create the foundation for achieving universal access to safely managed water and sanitation services and for a vibrant, open market in WASH products. By assessing existing laws, regulations, policies, and standards, we will understand how the current legal environment creates or eliminates trade barriers to safe, high quality WASH products and creates the commitment necessary to generate more widespread access to water and sanitation.

Our Work:

This project performs diagnostics of the existing legal, policy and institutional frameworks governing NQI related to the WASH sector in Ghana, Uganda, and Zambia. These diagnostics assess the enabling environment to increase access to drinking water and sanitation, support the adoption and application of international WASH standards, and enable the removal of WASH NQI barriers to trade in WASH products. Legal gaps and shortcomings will be identified, and recommendations made on how these gaps can be addressed by aligning them to international standards and best practices. Further, the findings and recommendations will be validated with stakeholders and completed reports will be disseminated widely with government agencies, creating opportunities for reform.

Where we work:

Ghana, Uganda, Zambia

Additional Resources:

Project: Utility Management Standards Training for Water Sector Utilities
Implementer: American Water Works Association (AWWA)

The Challenge:

The gap between reliable drinking water supply and growing demand in cities is widening globally. Water quality concerns are driven by unauthorized access to distribution lines, as well as aging infrastructure. Poor water and sanitation services undermine local development and local businesses. It also increases the probability of contracting life-threatening waterborne diseases as a result of standing wastewater and unreliable drinking water sources. Effective management of water sector utilities is crucial to providing reliable water supply and sanitation services. Additionally, a well-managed utility can be a driver to promote economic development.

Our Work:

In this project, AWWA Utility Management Standards will be introduced to water sector utilities through a series of in-person and virtual workshops. The use of standards, such as AWWA’s Utility Management Standards, assists water sector entities in addressing WASH challenges by improving utility management and performance over time, increasing utility efficiency, reliability, consistency, and providing safer water to the general public. AWWA’s ANSI-accredited Utility Management Standards provide critical requirements and best practices for the operation and management of key water utility operations, such as water treatment plant operation and management, distribution systems operation and management, utility management, and emergency preparedness practices. Introducing these standards and providing instruction on how to implement them at utilities will provide social, economic, and public health benefits to the local communities.

Where we work:

India, Zambia, Malawi, and Lesotho

Additional Resources:
  • Read the SA2 AWWA Fact Sheet   [India]  [Africa]
  • Learn more about AWWA
  • about this project

Project: Community Water Systems – Standards for safety and risk management
Implementer: NSF International

The Challenge:

Quality of life can be reduced as a result of the burden of disease from chemical and microbiological contaminants in community and household drinking water systems. NSF Drinking Water standards establishes minimum health effects and requirements for chemical contaminants and impurities that are directly imparted to drinking water from components used in drinking water systems and chemicals used to treat drinking water.

Our Work:

In this project, NSF Drinking Water standards on drinking water treatment chemicals and drinking water system components will be introduced to stakeholders to build consensus for standards that validate the safety and efficacy of materials, chemicals and water treatment devices that come into contact with drinking water systems. Training events will be held to inform regulators, operators, manufacturers, NGOs, and other stakeholders about NSF Drinking Water standards. NSF Drinking Water standards will inform and strengthen existing in-country efforts to better provide safe drinking water in Morocco and Brazil.

Where we work:

Morocco and Brazil

Additional Resources:
  • Read the SA2 NSF Fact Sheet
  • Learn more about NSF
  • about this project

Project: Increase the Flow of WASH Services
Implementer: International Association of Plumbing & Mechanical Officials (IAPMO)

The Challenge:

Access to improved drinking water and sanitation is one of the most fundamental issues facing the global community. Approximately 2.5 billion people worldwide do not have access to improved sanitation. The challenges surrounding improving access to water and sanitation services are systemic and related to poor governance, inadequate infrastructure and supply chains, poor system maintenance, skilled worker shortages, and transforming cultural or social norms related to sanitation. IAPMO will address these issues to pave the way for increased trade and exports of related technologies and services.

Our Work:

This project will work with foreign ministries, local industry and manufacturers to develop a roadmap focused on improving countries’ access to safe and efficient WASH products, removing technical barriers to trade, standardizing conformity assessment practices and helping to develop much-needed supply chains of safe products.

  • In Indonesia, IAPMO will assist the National Standardization Agency of Indonesia (BSN) to develop and adopt a new national standard related to faucets and to provide technical assistance to relevant ministries on its adoption and enforcement. As the final endpoint of water delivery systems, this new standard will ensure that these products meet basic levels of safety and efficiency. Standardization and enforcement in this area is critical to protecting the performance and health of drinking water systems for Indonesian’s citizens.
  • In the Philippines and Jordan, IAPMO will conduct a comprehensive review of regulatory and conformity assessment requirements that will serve to educate and inform national policymakers and external stakeholders. For both countries, long-term water security is vital to sustaining their economic growth and achieving other important national goals such as: improved health and welfare for the poor and most vulnerable; socio-economic and ecological resilience to recurring shocks; and peace and stability.
Where we work:

Jordan, the Philippines, and Indonesia

Additional Resources:
  • Read the SA2 IAPMO Fact Sheet
  • Learn more about IAPMO
  • about this project

View all SA2 Projects