Urban Composting Toilet

Today in my inbox I got an email that contained an article about a rainwater toilet and then from that article there was a link on Urban composting toilets.  As an urban guy who has delusions of one day owning a small building in an urban center (preferably NYC) where I can garden, can, dry, rain water collect and of course compost, in short:  do all those fun off grid activities.

I was curious just exactly how unpleasant composting toilets were.  I don’t have an issue with them but I think it could be weird for guests at a dinner party where if they need to go to the bathroom it’s more akin to using kitty liter….this video was very instructive.  The thing I found most interesting was that it takes a full year for your composted “humanure” to become dirt you can then use in your garden.  Urine can be mixed with water and used as a nitrogen rich fertilizer post hast (this particular toilet as a urines diversion system so it is separated out).  In the end I think I would maybe go with the rainwater toilet first….the thing that you realize about human composting toilets is that it is kind of misleading to call them “urban”  as you need a house with a back yard and a fair amount of space to make this work.  It’s also labor intensive so if you were old or otherwise infirm it would be challenging.

Still, it’s interesting and it’s good to know people are actually living what they believe.  Our use of potable water for things like toilets is not something that can go on forever as fresh water is increasingly becoming a precious resource.

About urbanfoodguy

I'm a self taught cook with a dedication to buying and eating food that is as humanely and sustainably raised as possible. Which is why in addition to recipes you will see a lot of environmental/political reporting here. I started cooking when I was about 6, it's something I always loved to do. Watching Graham Kerr - aka "The Galloping Gourmet" - was what got me started and I have never really looked back. Over the years I've been a private chef, a caterer, and a food stylist for magazines such as Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Real Simple, Oprah, Martha Stewart's Everyday Food and many more. I've also worked in the prep kitchen for the Food Network on the Bobby Flay and Paula Deen shows. Now I work at home in my kitchen sharing with you here recipes that I create or that other people have created that inspire me and I think you will like. I love my neighborhood (the Lower East Side of Manhattan) and I love to travel. Because NYC is such a big place I tend to focus mostly on my 'hood and the ones that are close by: The East Village, Bowery, Chinatown and Williamsburg. My love of travel has no limits really, I'm always ready to get on a plane. I was lucky enough to have a business for many years that allowed me to spend a lot of time in South East Asia. These days I've been spending time in Mexico, Germany, Canada and the West Coast of the U.S., but check back you never know where I might end up. I do consulting, cooking classes, and freelance lifestyle writing so if you are interested please send me a note: urbanfoodguy@gmail.com
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