To all those who talk about what authorities may or may not allow, I'd say we need to ignore them. Treated Human Waste as Fertilizer? By Gavin Coote. Hi, thanks for stopping by. As for the urine, it’s composted with woody material or poured onto well-mulched and well-watered garden beds. Like to read more content, Join the Mother Earth News Community Today! This is an article on how to safely and easily compost human waste. Always use human waste compost on non-edible plants only, or bury it. Natural Cold Storage: Fresh Food in Winter, Keeping Crops Cool During Hot Weather: 13 Ways to Beat the Heat, Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price. Liquid Gold: The Lore & Logic of Using Urine to Grow Plants. They all thought I was crazy, like so many others, when I talked about how safe and easy it is to use human compost. Imagine this mixed with water. Hygiene is important where human waste is involved. i like the simplicity of containment of the poo and composting the shit out of pathogens. Researchers are working to convert human waste into a resource that benefits farmers, creates jobs and generates business opportunities. Some experts say one month of aging is sufficient for a household’s urine used on its own garden, while six months is advised for urine from combined sources. I understand this makes a good fertiliser. It is not a crime! She pours her urine into her composter, which is full of brown leaves that need moisture and nitrogen to break down quickly. Wastewater contains organic waste such as proteins, carbohydrates, fats, oils and urea, which are derived from food and human waste we flush down in kitchen sinks and toilets. In a unique variation of biogas production from human waste, researchers at Delft University of Technology have worked out a way to produce synthetic gas – “syngas” – which is a mixture of carbon monoxide and hydrogen. We have already allowed same sex marriages, personal cultivation of marijuana, so there should be no restrictions as to using human execreta (faeces)and or urine in gardens, why not? Also, any medications we take which aren't fully utilized by the body, are passed through and end up in our waste. I have a major concern with the using of human waste as fertilizer; the problem is that, as humans, we eat so much processed food that our waste often contains large amounts of toxins and heavy metals. Also used compost from my simple composting toilet last summer to crreate flower beds while I was occupying a city-owned warehouse in Harrisburg. I was thinking of creating a system where in the basement you have a 5 gal bucket that is plumbed into the system to strain out liquids right away to the grey collection system for reuse on toliets and irrigation, then solids remain and emptied once per day to the compost heap outside where like what you said it will compost and sit for a year? “We use it to build up the soil around fruit trees and flower beds,” Keaney says. Today, scum is landfilled. Night soil is a historically used euphemism for human excreta collected from cesspools, privies, pail closets, pit latrines, privy middens, septic tanks, etc.This material was removed from the immediate area, usually at night, by workers employed in this trade. Why? As well, Klehm actually did all the pick up of waste and delivery of toilets, sawdust and new containers throughout the project. I had bicycled from Morehead City, NC to Harrisburg, PA on a one-speed bicycle starting at the beginning of "Bicycle to Work Week" and took two weeks, camping in random places along the way, to get there. There are several ways to turn solid human waste into viable and enviable fertilizer. This will keep the odor under control and it will help keep the heat trapped inside the compost pile. Human sewage sludge in compost is common and often marketed as “organic” despite chemicals sneaking into the mix. First, it is much easier to compost human waste waste from a urine diverting composting toilet. . I would like to have 3 composts going for different scraps, so you recommend leaving our waste for a year as others state 3 to 6 months is sufficient. Pounds of snipped tresses that are disposed of as waste can be used as plant fertilizer. Two corrections about The Great Giveback project: the participants were given back roughly 20# of composted human waste in handsewn bads, not 2#. Everyone poops. Fitzroy North: VIC: I have not used or flushed my WC for over six years. That is since making a very simple compost toilet that I use for all my solid waste (shit). Maria Ann Kolovrat Likewise I'm eating low on the food chain lots of beans, rice, and wonderful veggies growing around the house in raised beds, watered with grey water from sinks and tubs. You must never put composted human waste on edible plants, because of the small chance that dangerous bacteria is still alive in the waste. Thanks, Hi johnp, I have a little compost toilet for me, my partner and two teenage kids. Their “EcoFlush” Swedish urine-diverting toilet features a urine drain in the front of the bowl, through which urine and flush water drain to a graywater system that irrigates their landscape. Everything else flushes to the city’s treatment plant. The material is then pelletized and marketed throughout the United States under the name Milorganite. Here's another cool use of poop: tinyurl.com/3qe8tek. After another year of composting with only comfrey and some old straw, Klehm delivered a fluffy compost — that tested negative for fecal bacteria — in 2-pound bags printed with “The Great Giveback.”. Be glad to know if anyone knows more about the chemistry of this. Now I use rainwater caught in the cistern to make my home-brewed beers. After you flush your waste is carried along with urine, rainwater and household water to a local sewage treatment plant. Ask yourself sometime why many people won't use genetically modified grains as feed for cattle or chickens; perhaps it's because they don't want the contamination in the animal waste to be spread on their gardens. It's a shame that here in Australia - Victoria the 'City of Yarra' area zone does not legislate in PS I live in Tasmania so we only really have 3 months of real warmth for the quick breakdown. Experiments on hair as a fertilizer It’s not just for homesteaders anymore! The days of scum and sludge in the harbor are, fortunately, long-gone. Chicago landscaper, ecologist and urban poo-pioneer Nance Klehm took waste recycling to the community scale with her “Humble Pile” project: For three months, 22 participants pooped into 5-gallon buckets instead of their toilets and brought them to Klehm to be emptied into aerated 32-gallon garbage cans in an undisclosed location. After 11 months, the 50 garbage cans were dumped into one large pile. Already a Member but Sludge is processed into fertilizer pellets for gardening and landscaping. Just make sure you do your research and get the processing right - and don't tell them what your doing. The toilet treats waste on the spot and syphons off hydrogen for later use as energy. This stops smells and dries them out and adds extra carbon for the compost. Thanks Kate, What happens if one Burns the human waste first then fertilized the garden with the ashes? By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only). Tapped-out water sources. This is heat-dried with hot air in the range of 900–1,200 °F (482–649 °C), which heats the sewage sludge to at least 176 °F (80 °C) to kill pathogens. Generate power on the spot. The price for the fertilizer is as follows: Small bulk (1/4 tons to 1 ton) - $80 per ton. It's a shame that here in Australia - Victoria, the 'City of Yarra' area zone, always allows all grey water reuses, but dosen't allow all full 100% urine or excreta (faeces) for garden composting and environmental tree nourishment uses, considering the water restrictions we are permanently facing. I've been using compost from my 5 gallon composting toilet for the last year to condition raised, square-foot beds that I'm developing around my house. Other days, she pours it directly onto her vegetable garden, usually followed by a bucket of water collected from her tub. Regarding the comment about concern due to toxins in foods and prescription drugs, I don't use prescription drugs. But who wants to actually deal with it? Using a similar manual collection method, UK-based company Loowatt operates its Madagascar-based waste collection system, turning excrement into fertilizer and biogas—a form of natural gas that can be burned for energy. What are your thoughts on a mid stream collection for composting? And near San Francisco, Anna Zander collects her urine in discarded plastic bottles. Those bio-solids include treated and dried human waste. Most pathogens we excrete are in feces. In the sewage systems of today, which deal with millions of tonnes of domestic waste and industrial effluent, this human fertiliser comes in the form of treated sewage sludge.. This is easy to collect (for a man), I use one litre yoghurt tubs. Oceans of sewage. In theory, using human waste as a nitrogen-rich, natural fertilizer seems logical, but it’s not that simple today. If applying directly to plants, you must dilute it with eight parts water to one part urine to avoid burning plant roots (some sources recommend 20 parts to one). You can just use it as fertilizer! It's fun! Pee is Easy! The toilet consists of a wooden bench with an opening to which a plastic diverter is affixed (you can also use a trimmed funnel) to drain urine into a 3-gallon pail. Human waste is rich in nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, the key ingredients of most fertilizers, and for hundreds of years, with varying levels of success, farmers have been using it as … This black, smelly substance, adorned with pieces of trash, represented the worst results of the old treatment plants, and the most memorable ones for boaters. Bravo, Mother Earth News for this article! Properly recycled human waste contains no dangerous bacteria. If this become large scale though, I wonder where the facility will be placed and whether there will be people opposed to living near it. It's time we made the next move to sewerage black water instead of clogging up the toilets and wasting time working effortlessly.Thankyou very much! whats your thoughts. Loading... Organic waste to fertilizer production line uses the organic waste as the raw material, such as organic waste, straw, excrement from people, livestock and poultry, cake meal, agricultural and sideline products, then it is fermented, deodorized and thoroughly decomposed to be made fertilizer. Kramer is an ecologist, human rights advocate, National Geographic emerging explorer, and the executive director of Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods (SOIL). The humanure must be turned into a “hot pile” to kill potentially dangerous pathogens, treated with earthworms, or storing it in a container with a tight-fitting lid for at least 12 months to kill off bad organisms – … Treated human waste has been used on farmland for decades, but the ick factor has not entirely faded. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. I live in Ireland where these things are also heavily regulated. Great example of recycling. excreta and urine use, because by now gay marriages are allowed, and so is exempted personal marijuana cultivation, so why not piss and shit for PPN to grow and nourish it all? Sewage sludge accumulated by more than four million residents in Los Angeles is extracted and treated at the Hyperion Treatment Plant , the city's largest and oldest wastewater treatment facility. For this is what's needed, it's priceless, required and very antiseptic, high quality too! I just plug em up and then scoop the grey water into buckets and then water. Is using urine this way safe? Business models for faecal sludge management and the production of a safe, high quality fertilizer are being tested in ten cities across the world. Nance Klehm demonstrates that human waste can be composted and used to safely fertilize soil. I also collect all my urine and use this diluted 20 to 1 to feed most of my fruit and veg. The compost I produce and the crops I get from my vegetable plot are sufficient testimony for me .l In Oakland, Calif., Heather Kuiper and Lauren Rauch look out over a verdant backyard fertilized with urine combined with graywater from laundry and bathing. hallo from australia--i am making a compost toilet using farm pods --i have 3 acres in tropics any suggestions ? Australia: (City of Yarra): Other startups are finding different ways to convert waste into value. Organic Waste to Fertilizer Production Line. You can put human urine in compost but, as with any human waste, you need to exercise caution. Also I'm thinking about it going under ground as opposed to up on earth and then having to layer it with carbon etc. Environmental protection is way more important that their 'laws'. 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