Pee & Poo – we all do it – information on dry composting systems

It’s a basic human activity – pee & poo.

I’m not interested in lecturing but there are a few obvious things I’d like to point out:

  • we die if we run out of water
  • in many parts of the world we’re running out of water
  • we use multi billions of litres of fresh drinking water a day to flush pee and poo away
  • there are alternatives to flushing toilets
  • the alternatives aren’t all yukky
  • we can all explore getting some form of non flushing/ dry system toilet and make a huge difference to our water usage and bills as well as total water consumption

I did some research this morning for a friend who has just bought a home in California. She and her husband are interested in a compost toilet in the house but don’t know what their options are at the moment.

I’m no expert but there’s a pile of information online and I gathered some of it to share.

There’s a classic book called the Humanure Handbook that I know many of you will refer to – here’s their site

I like the urine separating systems that require no water – usually known as dry systems. The first link is a great vid and worth watching before you pop into any of the other sites. A lot of the sites are full of useful information on other links and books.
This is just a sample of links
 great vid of a compost toilet in a womans home – the poo and pee show. I learnt a lot from this vid as it shows the whole system. Her site [Greywater Action] has a lot of useful information that I’ve listed below:

http://greywateraction.org/content/about-composting-toilets

http://greywateraction.org/sites/default/files/peter/Jul09/ecotoilet.pdf how to make a composting toilet – looks like an outdoors deal
http://clivusmultrum.com/products-services.php american business that provides compost toilets and greywater systems
http://greywateraction.org/projects/composting-toilets examples of composting toilets in urban environments
compost toilet in a restaurant in Mexico
http://www.ecovita.net/products.html urine diverting suppliers. I still like the system in the first video.
http://www.cityfarmer.org/comptoilet64.html – info on composting toilets and manufacturers
http://www.peakprosperity.com/forum/79156/toilets-resilient-lifestyle a group conversation about what systems different people use
http://inspectapedia.com/septic/altcompost.htm not sure when this was written – has a list of manufacturers and things to think about
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Urine_diversion – wikipedia entry on urine diverting systems
This is just the tip of the iceberg as far as information goes so feel free to add your suggestions.

So where has all the time gone?

Hi and welcome back me!

4 years have gone by since I was last here and as with life – the adventures continue.

I just updated my Once Upon a Time story and here is a bit of what’s been happening for me

And the adventure continued …

In 2008 the good witch Liz returned from her fab trip to see her family and friends in Oz and Singapore to find that a new adventure had begun.

It was called the Irish recession.

As you know dear readers, in every tale there is good and evil and in 2008 Evil had triumphed and the land was laid waste by avarice, arrogance and blind stupidity by men called bankers, politicians and property developers.

To this day they have not been punished but that’s a whole other story.

Our good witch had run a business for many years that worked with charities and arts organisations and as they found themselves with less and less gold – so too did Liz.

But she was a very resilient and resourceful woman and she saw this as a way to learn and create new things.

What did she do?

Liz knew that there wasn’t one solution – because life is never that simple – so she explored a number of avenues:

  • she learnt how to barter her skills and has been doing nicely for 4 years
  • she asked for help and was very moved by how many friends, family and neighbours gave her support in so many ways
  • she decided to earn small trickles of income using different skills and set up her 1 to 1 Site Design service
  • she defined herself as living in genteel financial poverty and also as a Time Billionaire – something many people don’t achieve until they retire
  • she used her Time to work on creating the Life Dreaming Expedition with her brother Marc and plans to launch it online later in 2012
  • in 2011 she moved back to Dublin and lived for a year with 2 very good friends
  • in 2012 she and her dog Coco [who wandered into her life after living on the streets for a few days as a puppy in July 2008] moved to a housesit in a fab cottage in a valley in West Wicklow.

In the 4 years of the recession she learnt a lot about being resilient and creative and living happily [ish] with very little money.

She decided that the recession and Irish summers had helped her make a decision to move back to Australia. She also wanted to spend more time with her family and friends.

And she still dreams.

She has many dreams and even when the plans go awry [as they always will because they are just plans – which are figments of our imagination] she enjoys being healthy and curious and dealing with another obstacle/challenge.

In 2013 she hopes/plans to be in Australia and there is a very long list of things to be done before she gets there.

It will cost €5000 to bring her magic dog Coco back to Oz but she is Liz’s faithful companion and much loved.

The story, as with all stories, has no real end so stay tuned ….

I’m going to spend time  [and I’m a Time Billionaire so I am RICH] over the next few months updating the sites and resources on this site.

In 4 years there have been remarkable developments in a whole range of areas related to building and living offgrid – not least the number of blogs that people are writing.

I’m also interested in contemporary small eco prefab buildings and have started researching them.

I’ll put everything I find into Pages.

I still have my dream of living off grid and it’ll happen somehow somewhen.