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29th March 2022

Overcoming barriers to engaging with private sewerage users in support of sustainable rural water services

Private sewerage system; Cover photos courtesy of: Rowan Ellis (James Hutton Institute)

This policy brief provides an overview of the types of barriers which inhibit effective engagement with private sewerage users and makes recommendations for overcoming these challenges. The policy brief draws on grey and peer reviewed literature to highlight the key challenges faced by public agencies in engaging householders and communities with their private sewage systems (PSS), and through existing case studies details the types of tools available to support engagement. Recommendations are made within the Scottish context, principally advocating the development a theory and evidence-informed engagement strategy, which can support sewerage user-managers. The findings of this work will assist public agencies, particularly the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA), Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) and Local Authorities in developing their approach to engagement with PSS users.