Jeremy is a Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) researcher with special interest in Pacific island countries and territories and the wider Asia region. His primary areas of expertise include sustainability of rural water services, climate change impacts on WASH services, and delivery of WASH services in Pacific island contexts. His PhD research focused on the climate change vulnerability and resilience of community-managed water services in Vanuatu. Jeremy has further experience working on domestic rainwater harvesting, small-scale water safety planning, and qualitative research in the Pacific island region.
Kohlitz, J.P., Rostiani, R., Indarti, N., Murta, J. & Willetts, J. 2018, 'Sludge removal enterprises in Indonesia: factors affecting entrepreneurial success', Journal of Water Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, vol. 8, no. 2, pp. 246-256.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Kohlitz, J.P., Chong, J. & Willetts, J. 2017, 'Climate change vulnerability and resilience of water, sanitation, and hygiene services: a theoretical perspective', Journal of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, vol. 7, no. 2, pp. 181-195.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
This paper explores the contemporary issues associated with informal settlements in the Pacific in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG 11—Sustainable Cities and Communities. We explore the challenges of water and sanitation service provision in informal settlements, and describe steps being made to address these challenges. Finally, we look at the future of informal settlements in the Pacific in the context of sustainable development, examining specific examples of progress in Solomon Islands and Fiji. As urban populations grow, so too have rates of urban poverty and populations residing in informal settlements. Given the lack of suitable housing, large numbers of new settlers have no choice but to live in temporary shelters or on marginal land. Informal settlements are characterised by overcrowding, poor access to services (including water, sanitation and electricity), roads and drainage. Settlement areas are also more highly prone to natural hazards such as flooding due to their location on marginal land including mangroves, riverbanks, floodplains and steep slopes (ADB 2016). Informal settlements can exist in many different forms, from newly established settlements of disparate individuals, to those mimicking rural villages through their more mature governance and micro-economic systems (ibid). This, along with the heterogeneity of Pacific Island countries in general, highlights the need for careful consideration in supporting the sustainable development of informal settlements—an issue that cuts across many of the SDGs. As for all complex development challenges, an inclusive approach is required, as advocated by the SDGs. Governments, civil society, the private sector, donors, multilateral organisations and other actors have roles to play to ensure development progress is made for people residing in informal settlements.
Kohlitz, J., Willetts, J.R. & Chong, J. 2016, 'Monitoring the human rights to water and sanitation: an analysis of policy in Pacific Island countries', Water Policy, vol. 18, no. 5.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
Government monitoring of water and sanitation services is a critical step in realising the human rights to water and sanitation (HRWS). In this study we investigated the national water and sanitation policies of 13 Pacific island countries (PICs) to understand how they envision monitoring the water and sanitation service delivery dimensions put forth by the HRWS framework. In particular, we analysed the policies for fundamental aspects of good monitoring governance and sought to learn how strongly monitoring of each service delivery dimension was represented in the policies. We found that delineation of roles and responsibilities and defined information flows are generally underdeveloped, and that the policies tend to give precedence to monitoring the service delivery dimensions of availability, quality, and sustainability over accessibility, affordability, acceptability, and equality. Donors have considerable influence on which dimensions receive the most emphasis in the policies. If realisation of the HRWS is to be effectively supported in PICs, PIC governments and supporting donors must continue to refine national policy to clarify aspects of good monitoring governance and to be more inclusive of monitoring a wider range of service delivery dimensions.
Kohlitz, J.P. & Smith, M.D. 2015, 'Water quality management for domestic rainwater harvesting systems in Fiji', Water Science and Technology: Water Supply, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 134-141.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
© 2015 IWA Publishing. Health risks from drinking rainwater are relatively small in the developing world context, but action is needed to ensure water safety. Water safety plans (WSPs) use an approach to manage water quality that has shown signs of success with public and communal water supplies, but relatively little research has been done to investigate the application of WSPs to self-supply systems. The aim of this paper is to investigate the primary issues surrounding appropriate water quality management of domestic rainwater harvesting (DRWH) systems in Fiji and consider how the principles of WSPs can be applied in this context. A qualitative research design was followed, utilising semi-structured interviews with 34 rural households and six key informants, sanitary inspections of DRWH systems and thematic data analysis. A number of challenges, including limited government resources and the limited knowledge and casual attitudes of rural rainwater consumers, constrain the practicality of adopting conventional WSPs at the household level, but steps for improvement can be taken.
Kohlitz, J., Hasan, T., Khatri, K., Sokota, A., Iddings, S., Bera, U. & Psutka, R. 2013, 'Assessing reported use and microbiological performance of a point-of-use household water filter in rural Fiji', Journal of Water Sanitation and Hygiene for Development, vol. 3, no. 2, pp. 207-215.View/Download from: UTS OPUS or Publisher's site
A non-governmental organisation has distributed point-of-use water filtering units in the Western Division of Fiji. We sought to understand filter utilisation and water quality: both water flowing directly out of filters and stored water. We surveyed 270 households and 6 schools on filter use and performed hydrogen sulphide bacterial indicator testing on 24 water samples directly from filters and 37 stored water samples. Our response rate was 95%. Of these, only half (52%) reported consistently filtering their drinking water. Very few (8%) reported consistent use when preparing kava, a traditional drink. Factors associated with limited filter use included lost or broken filter parts (22%) (p < 0.05) and perception of source water quality as 44% of respondents who believed their source water was safe to drink reported consistent filter use compared to 68% of respondents who did not (p < 0.01). Bacterial indicator testing using hydrogen sulphide paper-strips showed that most water samples directly from the filter (71%) and from storage vessels (76%) were contaminated. Limited levels of use and high levels of contamination in both water directly from the filter and stored water raise serious questions as to the benefit of the filter even as an interim water quality solution in this setting. © IWA Publishing 2013.
Willetts, J.R., Chong, J., Carrard, N., Kohlitz, J. & Grant, M. 2016, 'Water security and the SDGs: Implications for WASH sector monitoring', WASH Futures Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Conference 2016.