The discharge of untreated waste into water systems is one of the most common sanitation problems. This creates multiple issues, such as polluting drinking water, creating a breeding ground for insects that spread disease, and exposing bathers to infectious disease. Contaminating the water sources also has an indirect affect on health by exposing foods, such as vegetables and fish, to the pathogens present in contaminated water. Not only does this contaminate the food supply, but it also reduces the amount of food available.
Furthermore, food preparation and storage should be carried out with deliberate concern for safety and convenience. Specific risks need to be considered when monitoring biosecurity activities. The principle of sanitation at its core rests on the concept of separation, since pathogens can only survive in their specific places and not in others. Incorrect procedures can be detrimental to both human and animal health.
Wastewater can be considered as a potential and reliable source of energy for developing countries. The amount of energy consumed in the production of a kilogram of food is 20,000 times more than the amount of energy consumed to produce a liter of water ( Bonneux and DAoust, 2013 ). Furthermore, with increasing urbanization, wastewater can be used for powering the engines of public transportation, such as buses or trucks, or large farms. The first wastewater-to-electricity plant of the world in the west-Binswanger, near Bonn, Germany, was created in 1904 ( Hirs and Mendel, 1991 ). By 1921, this plant was producing 115 MW from 13,000 cubic meters of wastewater per day. There are other examples of wastewater-driven generators and currently there are 25 wastewater-to-electricity plants in operation in various countries ( Bruun and Saemundsen, 2015 ). Wastewater management also includes the recovery of water and energy from water that is already generated from wastewater and in the reuse of treated wastewater by supplying water or energy to consumers ( Schreiner et al., 2013 ). Additionally, wastewater treatment and collection can decrease the need for individual, commercial, and industrial water consumption. Metered water pricing policies (i.e. water tariffs) can incentivize the use of reclaimed water (e.g., composter(s) and other engineered). Metering can also encourage consumers to conserve water. It is assumed that differentiated pricing for reclaimed water could trigger demand for sustainable practices and help ensure that water resources are not diverted from municipal, agricultural, and industrial applications (Bierman, 2013).