Urine Diversion & Reuse

March 21, 2011

Urine diversion is becoming the trend and we expect a rapid increase in the use of waterless urinals and (UD) urine diverting toilets.  In conventional waterborne systems diverting urine saves perhaps nine out of ten flushes. In dry sanitation, this separation at source facilitates the composting of feces and provides urine, which can be diluted and directly applied to agriculture to promote growth or precipitated to form high quality, commercially-valuable struvite.

The Rich Earth Institute in Vermont is conducting important research on urine reuse in agriculture.

Learn more:

Urine diversion components: Overview of urine diversion components such as waterless urinals, urine diversion toilets, urine storage and reuse systems. GTZ, 2009.  This 31 page illustrated study introduces urine diversion and provides current info on waterless urinals, UD toilet technologies, piping and storage and on reuse  in agriculture.

Urine diversion: one step towards sustainable sanitation. SEI EcoSanRes, 65-page book gives useful detail on smaller scale and household applications in Sweden.

Practical Guidance on the Use of Urine in Crop Production. SEI, 2010.  61 pages.  Information on the economic value of urine, application strategies, handling, storage, treatment, gender and institutional aspects, case studies and experiments, and policy guidance and guidelines.

“Gee Whiz: Human Urine Is Shown to Be an Effective Agricultural Fertilizer.” By Mara Grunbaum. Scientific American. July 23, 2010.  Researchers say our liquid waste not only promotes plant growth as well as industrial mineral fertilizers, but also would save energy used on sewage treatment.

Use of Urine Issue  #3 of Sustainable Sanitation Practice, EcoSan Club of Austria, 2010.

The Story of NPK. Post on SOIL blog.

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    Public Hygiene Lets Us Stay Human, or PHLUSH, is an all-volunteer advocacy group based in Portland's Old Town Chinatown. We collaborate with grassroots organizations, environmental activists, planners, architects, code officials and city managers. We receive support from the Old Town Chinatown Community Association and Neighbors West-Northwest. PHLUSH is a member of the World Toilet Organization and a partner in the Sustainable Sanitation Alliance.

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