Bill Gates Promotes New Toilet Technology With Human Waste
Bill Gates Promotes New Toilet Technology With Human Waste
Bill Gates speaks at the Reinvented Toilet Expo in Beijing on Tuesday
08 November, 2018, 23:22
He showed the audience a jar of human excrement and explained that such a standard amount of feces contains 200 trillion rotaviruses 20 billion bacteria Shigella and 100 000 eggs of parasitic worms.
"We are all here for one reason: because more than half the world's population doesn't have the safe sanitation they need to lead healthy and productive lives", Gates told officials, business owners, bankers and academics at the expo hosted by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Gates even went on to taste from the water made from faeces and said something like 'he would happily drink it every day.' He has also invested in a small-scale treatment plant which is able to process waste from pit latrines, septic tanks and sewers.
"I have to say, a decade ago I never imagined that I'd know so much about poop", Bill Gates told the Reinvented Toilet Expo in Beijing this week.
There are multiple designs of the new toilet, but all work by separating liquid and solid waste.
The three-day event took place in China, where President Xi Jinping has made the "toilet revolution" a key priority.
He declared that "today we are on the cusp of a sanitation revolution" and promised the most significant advances in the field for nearly 200 years.
According to Gates, "There is much more than one jar's worth in the environment and these pathogens cause diseases like diarrhea, cholera, and typhoid that kills almost 500,000 children under the age of five annually". Every dollar invested in sanitation yields about $5.50 in global economic returns, according to the World Health Organization.
The foundation funded scientists to invent toilets that are self-contained - they take human waste, kill risky pathogens and convert the resulting material into products with potential commercial value, like clean water, electricity and fertilizer.
"It's no longer a question of if we can reinvent the toilet and other sanitation systems".
That 500,000 figure is the number of children who die annually because of water contaminated with human waste that hasn't been processed properly.
The foundation has said they hope the reinvented toilet will first roll out in buildings like schools and apartment buildings, before costs gradually decline and they become affordable in households.
"China has an opportunity to launch a new category of innovated non-sewered sanitation solutions that will benefit millions of people worldwide".
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