Dry toilets for Crabbush
A video presentation of the 3 choices of toilet systems was given this morning to 12 interested people. After questions back and forth with Jara and Phillip in Germany. We voted unanimously for the dry toilet system. This involves a urinary diversion toilet which separates the solids and liquids. No water is needed except for hand washing. Toilet paper is used along with a cup of ash or sawdust and as long as the solids remain dry and well ventilated the system works well. Terra Khaya and Elundini Backpackers have a simpler version of this system and it is working well. This design involves a water storage tank for urine and grey water from sinks which will eventually drain to a constructed wetland area using plants like ‘comfrey’ to cover the surface and whose roots will utilize the nutrients in the water. Because no water will be needed for flushing there will be sufficient rainwater collected for hand washing from the roof. The tanks which collect the solids work on a rotation system whereby the position of the toilet will be moved every 12 months and the “fertilizer” remaining will be used for the garden.
Most concerns were about ‘smells’ but we have been assured that this system if constructed well and used properly will cause no problem. The constructed wetland will be safe and there will be no worries about seepage with them. These toilets will also be ideal for use at Bold Point and other similar places and it is hoped that once the children have learnt to use this system they will educate others on its advantages.
Jara also assured us that this system provides a much better treatment system than the septic tanks which most of us use in Hogsback. I have full details of the plans for anyone who may be interested but the picture shows a ‘urinary diversion toilet’. During the construction phase the children will learn exactly what it is and how and why it works and we are confident that by the time it is built they will be ready. By March next year construction will have begun and I am sure anyone who has seen the toilets at Crabbush will be ‘relieved’ that new ones – which are totally environmentally friendly – are being put in place, and that they have hand washing facilities!
Thanks to Hogsback Inn this morning for providing the venue for our meeting and to Wayne as our community liaison for the project.