A look at the sanitation and solid waste management situation in the city of Shimla and its neighbouring cities and towns in the Himalayan regions of India and Nepal reveals a grim picture. Waste water and solid waste produced in urban areas remains mainly untreated due to the lack of basic sanitation and solid waste infrastructure and accompanying services. As a result, the needs of the growing population cannot be met and pollution levels in urban areas are very high. While Shimla does not yet fulfil the sanitation standards set by the Government of India, significant improvements in its sanitation planning and implementation of municipal sanitation and waste infrastructure have recently taken place.
In order to facilitate an exchange of experiences and knowledge gained from the recent developments in Shimla for the wider Himalaya region, and on behalf of Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), adelphi organised and implemented a regional exchange programme on urban sanitation and waste management solutions in and around Shimla. Participants from national and municipal authorities and public utility providers from cities in India and Nepal located in the Himalayan region had the opportunity to discuss challenges and solutions regarding urban sanitation and solid waste management with experts from Shimla, also visiting the newly established waste water treatment facilities. adelphi also provided GIZ with support in the development of the study tour programme.