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As of 2008, almost 45% of the Indonesian population (over 94 million) did not have access to sanitary toilets, 33 million still practiced open defecation and 22 million shared communal latrines. As a result of poor sanitation, there are an estimated 121,100 diarrhea episodes resulting in more than 50,000 deaths annually. In the capital city of Jakarta, roughly 50% of residents have access to the city’s water supply system. Unsealed septic tanks and the use of soak pits results in wastewater flowing through open gutters and contaminating shallow groundwater. The discharge of the sludge from septic tanks is often disposed of in open waterways. In 2005, the Governor of Jakarta issued the Domestic Waste Water Regulation (PERGUB No. 122 – 2005), which states that households, public infrastructures, and commercial buildings must provide domestic waste management systems, to ensure the effluent produced complies with Government Standards.  However, the regulation failed to anticipate the growing urban population and the corresponding issues with access to sanitation in densely populated urban areas.

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