Our main focus

Guatemala is the second poorest country in Latin America and the Caribbean. In contrast to the rest of the region, poverty rates have been increasing in recent years. Especially in rural areas, the population lacks access to basic infrastructure, in particular to improved drinking water and sanitation. 83% of the population lacks access to a sanitation service, and only 4% of the wastewater and sewage is treated properly, while the big majority flows into water bodies, polluting lakes, rivers, lagoons.

Lake Atitlán is facing high contamination risks since communities around the lake discard wastewater – along with garbage, and agricultural wastewater – into water streams that flow directly into the lake, mostly – 89% – without any filtration system.
Daily, 43 million liters of wastewaters enter the lake. In 2018 Lake Atitlán was declared in danger: the environmental consequences of many years of indiscriminate pollution are affecting the ecosystem, along with the population.

Our response comprises the creation of the Mosan Sanitation System with collection stations in the participating communities, transportation to a treatment plant, distribution of the recycling products (biochar and struvite), and involvement of the population, local institutions, industries, and NGOs.
Santa Catarina Palopó is the first community where the Mosan solution is currently being implemented. In this beautiful Mayan community accommodating approximately 1.000 families, only 1,9% of the toilets are connected to the municipal sewage system, the rest of them being latrines, septic tanks, simple pits in the ground. Environmental education and social awareness are fundamental aspects that need to be fostered in these areas, and represent a key step of our approach.

Mosan in numbers

Happy users
15
Feces collected (kg)
40
Urine collected (lts)
80
Water saved (lts)
70

Sanitation around the Lake

Flush Toilets
11%
Septic tanks
14%
No sanitation system
16%
Latrines
59%

Photo gallery