Approximately 75% of access to sanitation in urban areas is through on-site sanitation. The sector is unregulated and proper disposal of human waste is rare, creating severe health and environmental hazards. In rural areas only about 27% of households claim to use toilet facilities, and only 21% septic tanks. As with water, the number of people with access to adequate sanitation is much lower among the poor.
Quality of service is largely dependent on the proper functioning of on-site sanitation systems. With no regulation or performance standards, most septic tanks are not appropriately designed and maintained. As a consequence, partially treated wastewater is simply discharged into open drains and water bodies.
Septic tank emptying and septage collection and disposal is also not controlled. Contractors often dump waste into nearby streams and public drains (often, this happens because the local government does not have – or does not operate – a sludge treatment facility). In Surabaya, the local administration has imposed modest fines on contractors to prevent this from happening but these are not effective. Tariffs for sewerage in urban areas are not based on cost recovery principles. They are either calculated on the basis of land and building area, building type and use, not collected at all (as is the case in Kota Yogyakarta) or else added to the water supply tariff as a small surcharge.
Source: KKPPI, Sector Review 2006