Tuesday, 4 May 2010

PeePoo, Anyone?

Did you know that 1.5 million children die annually from diarrhea?

That horrendous statistic comes mainly from defective sanitation in the Third World. The UN wants to reduce those fatalities in half by 2015. A Stockholm architect and professor, one Anders Wilhelmson wants to do better than that with his PeePoo! It’s a one shot plastic bag priced at 2- 3cents per poop or pee! (The price of ordinary plastic bags.)

Use, it’s knotted and buried. A layer of urea crystals breaks down the waste into fertilizer, killing off disease-producing pathogens found in feces! He’s tried it out in both Kenya and India. As it goes, slum dwellers when they’re up to date use a “flyaway or helicopter toilet”, namely a plain plastic bag whose contents fester dangerously.

There is actually an NGO, dubbed the World Toilet Organization, meeting annually since 2001 at a World Toilet Summit, trying to deal with the toilet problems of 2.6 billions (40% of world total) with no access to healthy sanitation. James Sim, the WTO president reports that an Indian nonprofit, Sulabh International, has successfully pioneered a process that turns the defecation into bio gas, which is then used for cooking.

There are worse afflictions than constipation! (Sindya N. Bhanoo, “For Pennies, a Disposable Toilet That Could Help Grow Crops”)

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