World Economic Forum: The world needs more toilets, but Western solutions aren’t the answer
Here at SOIL we are thrilled to see this thoughtful piece from the World Economic Forum questioning the need for flush toilets and traditional sewerage systems. For ten years we have worked in Haiti to implement sustainable sanitation solutions that require no water and no infrastructure. Our toilets transform human waste into rich compost, recapturing the nutrients in human waste that are so often lost in a flush.
From the World Economic Forum:
“The invention of the flush toilet, or water closet, in 1596 ended open defecation and transferred excreta outside of homes for the first time. This was certainly a good thing in the short term, but today the flush toilet probably stands as one of the most unsustainable innovations in human history.
Think about it. Why would we want to increase the liquid volume of a potentially harmful substance – human waste? Most of the waste water that flush toilets create – more than 80% worldwide – ends up going directly back into the environment. No treatment, no use, just a lot of open sewers.”
Is your curiosity piqued? Read the whole article at www.weforum.org and share your questions and thoughts in the comments section below.
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May 14, 2017 (12:30 am)
Here is a more in-depth discussion of this:
http://www.chekhovskalashnikov.com/water-sanitation/ (on the ridiculousness of flush toilets)
http://www.chekhovskalashnikov.com/human-waste-disposal/ (on the reasonability of dry toilets)
… more solutions, even including sustainable use of silly flush toilets
… and here is another big solution I recently designed: a public urinal for women that is also a flowery garden
(See at the end that if you have enough room, you do not need a tank.) It would be a pleasure to help guide SOIL through process of doing some of these in Haiti.
August 4, 2017 (5:26 pm)
Hi Chris, Thanks for sharing those great resources! What a great idea to build a public urinal catered towards women. At this time, SOIL is laser-focused on refining EkoLakay’s model to ensure we can responsibly scale-up the service throughout the country, so while so we’re grateful for your offer to help, we currently don’t have the capacity to take that project on. We’ll keep your email on file though and reach out if anything changes. We’re grateful to know you are a potential resource.