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Zambia - Lusaka Sanitation Program – Climate Resilient Sustainable Infrastructure - ESMF Summary – 05 2015
Zambia loses 1.3 percent of GDP due to public health impacts of poor sanitation (Water and Sanitation Program, 2012), which results in child malnutrition, illness and premature death. The economic burden of inadequate sanitation falls most heavily on the poor who are most likely to have inadequate sanitation facilities. Lusaka is suffering from a sanitation crisis that claims lives through annual outbreaks of cholera, typhoid and dysentery and causes severe environmental pollution. An estimated 70 percent of Lusaka’s urban residents live in “peri-urban areas”, which are relatively highdensity, unplanned neighborhoods largely comprised of poor residents. Roughly 90 percent of peri-urban areas rely on pit latrines, most of which are unimproved latrines, i.e., do not comply with the definition of adequate sanitation and the remaining 10 percent use sewers, septic tanks or defecate in the open (estimated at 1 percent). In addition, 57 percent of Lusaka’s water supply is derived from fairly shallow groundwater abstracted within the city, which is prone to contamination through fissures in the underlying rock. The most vulnerable areas coincide with low-income neighborhoods situated to the south-west of the city center, making sewerage an attractive sanitation option in these areas. Poor management of solid waste and storm water drainage, and the generally flat terrain further compound these problems. Despite widespread consensus regarding the need to construct sewers, the city has been reluctant to shoulder investment costs, which may be difficult to recover.