Source separation sanitation (SSS) is a concept in which waste streams with specific characteristics (e.g. urine, faeces, greywater, hospital waste streams) are collected, transported and treated separately at the source. Hospital wastewater, for instance, contains about 10 fold the concentrations of pharmaceuticals in municipal wastewater and is considered an important source of antibiotic resistant bacteria. By treating (hospital) wastewater at the source the risks associated to wastewater can be addressed more specifically and effectively, thereby preventing the spread of antibiotic resistant bacteria and other pathogens in the population and discharge of toxic components into the environment.
Furthermore, sustainability objectives such as water reuse, recovery of resources and energy savings can also be more effectively reached within SSS. The main advantage is that source separation prevents dilution of wastewater streams. New technology must be developed to treat these concentrated waste water streams. For the treatment of hospital wastewater it is important to remove antibiotics and to develop a disinfection technology in which bacteria are not only killed but their DNA is destroyed.