Glimpse To Sanitation Problems In Bali

septic tank

Globally, billions of people do not have access to basic sanitation facilities even today, and it is affecting the health, economy, environment and communities in different ways. In developing countries of the world, the poor sanitation situation leads to public health hazards like diarrhoea, cholera and dysentery resulting in deaths, especially of children, every year. It costs billions and affects economic growth. The open defecation practices pollute the environment and aesthetic beauty of the place.

Must Read: The Economics Of Sanitation

Poor sanitation poses a bigger challenge for countries like Indonesia, where approximately 47% of the population has access to safe sanitation, whereas 20% still follow open defecation, especially in rural areas. Although the government of Indonesia has taken important measures like the Community based total sanitation program in rural areas, it has not given expected results. 

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Recently, various studies were conducted in Bali, Indonesia to understand the reasons why sanitation uptake and sustainable sanitation practices have not become prevalent. The results have shown that there are several factors such as existing social values, social structure, economic goals, mindset to accept change and community rules that have prevented the sanitation situation to improve in Bali. In other words, their understanding of waste and its negative effects are influenced by the societal value and not necessarily by medical science. It affects the way technology is accepted, waste disposal mechanism is viewed, construction and maintenance of toilets are perceived. 

Thus, the studies show that a comprehensive understanding of the determinants like local values and beliefs is important to address complex sanitation situation. Moreover, understanding the issues is not enough but how to respond to such challenges is the key. Innovative sanitation solutions are the need of the hour which can be easily accepted by the communities and adequate to their beliefs and values. 

Rural Highland Bali & Socioeconomic Factors Affecting Sanitation

A glimpse into the Balinese culture helped to get great insights into how cultural perspectives, norms and values at the individual level impacts sanitation uptake and sustainability. Some of them are discussed. 

It is a well-known fact that open defecation practice increases the chance of illness as it pollutes water and land in multiple ways. However, Balinese people believe in balance and harmony between humans and other beings, and supernatural power controls this balance. Thus, they do not see the need for the toilet or do not perceive unhygienic sanitation as a cause of concern. Moreover, they are willing to spend their money on ceremonies that ensure protection than building expensive toilets.


The concept of purity also prevents people from accepting sanitation solutions. For example, people consider the location of open defecation such as lower land or backyard of the compound as appropriate. They believe it doesn’t cause pollution. It creates problems as toilets cannot be built inside the compounds as it contains dirt or waste. Also, everyone can’t build toilets outside the compound because of the non-availability of land or money. The space arrangement makes it impossible for sanitation programs to succeed. Shared community toilets or reuse of waste is completely unacceptable. 


Hence, a comprehensive approach is necessary to improve sanitation in Bali. Education and awareness is the priority which can be done after taking the leaders of the communities into confidence. They should be encouraged to motivate and influence people to follow the best sanitation practices. It will hopefully help in the acceptance and implementation of the Community based total sanitation program started by the government. It will eventually help in establishing septic tanks, shared septic tanks or sewage systems in different localities. There are innovative and affordable solutions that can be used in rural areas to promote sanitation. Also, sustainable and environment friendly solutions are needed in keeping with Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations. 


Organica Biotech is one of the leading companies with advanced sanitation solutions aimed at protecting the environment and public health. Bioclean Septic contains septic tank enzyme-producing bacteria that act on the faecal matter and degrade it quickly. The rural population will be able to avoid mechanical emptying of septic tanks which will help in saving their money. It can reduce the burden on government authorities as well. Additionally, it is completely safe, natural and eco-friendly. Bioclean is one of the best products to help improve the sanitation situation in Bali, Indonesia.

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Post by Kiran Jyot