Article about Urine reuse example in Rwanda


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  • JKMakowka
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  • Just call me Kris :)
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Linking improvement in sanitation with food security - example from Rwanda

" How Rwanda Red Cross connected the use of human urine to food security "

Since it has become a bit quiet here in this section ;)

The article has some nice photos and videos about urine diversion toilets build in Rwanda.
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  • paresh
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  • Budding WASH researcher, especially interested in governance, public policy, finance, politics and social justice. Architect, Urban & Regional planner by training, Ex. C-WAS, India. I am a patient person :)
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Re: Article about Urine reuse example in Rwanda

Thanks Kris for sharing this very informative piece. Are you aware of its if this was replicated in other schools? or elsewhere? It is an excellent example for replication including in India. Can be converged with the mid-day meal scheme through which students are provided meals in the school. I am not sure if parents are required to contribute but know that though it is a substantial spending the rate (per student) is abysmally low. Would be great if costs related information could be available. (I could not find more about the project through a simple search) 

The piece also reminded me of experiments by Scott in China, they posted about it in this thread

Paresh Chhajed-Picha
Researcher at Indian Institute of Technology - Bombay, India
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  • HAPitot
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Re: Article about Urine reuse example in Rwanda

Kris, an interesting project, indeed – thanks for posting!

It reminds me of the many ecosan projects going on up to about a decade ago. Such projects are not financed anymore by donors who seem to think there are better projects to spend their money on. Supposedly ecosan has failed because of a low interest and adoption rate. But if you talk to locals they actually tell you something different – like a lack of patience by donors. And then, of course, there is the bad example of so called developed countries where very little or nothing is done along the lines of ecosan.

May-be the time for ecosan has come back again. Not only do fertilizers based on human waste, urine in particular, need very little energy for their production, thus reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but they are also very cheep, a big argument now that energy and fertilizer prices are sky rocketing.
Hanns-Andre Pitot
M.Eng. Environmental Pollution Control
presently in Seesen, Germany
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  • Heiner
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  • I am a retired organic farmer and interested in nutrient cycles. As an volunteer I now travel mainly to poor countries and together with locals I would like to find new ways of sustainable agriculture. This is beyond the regulations of IFOAM.
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Re: Article about Urine reuse example in Rwanda

Dear Hans,
as a fellow citizen I can just underline your words about the ignorance here in Germany. Although there are always some little lights in the dark. I expect in these days (soaring gas prices) politicians and scientists would take the recovery of nitrogen and other nutrients in their focus. But only phosphorous is now a big thing and is tried to filter out by an enormous technical effort.
One reason for this poor thinking is the proposed elimination of nutrients by the used technic. If you talk to scientists and some wastewater engineers they always claim 85-90% of the nutrients are off, when the "cleaned" wastewater is flowing into the river and the ocean.
But here are the results of a new study:
Weltkarte der menschlichen Abwässer - Hochauflösende Kartierung enthüllt Hotspots der Nährstoff- und Bakterieneinträge ins Meer -
(could not find the english version)
So this study shows another big lie about the progressive and advanced technology in the so called "high developed countries".
We can fly to mars and moon but are unable to close the nutrient loop as nature did over millions of years. And the worst part: we could but because of the costs we "can't afford". But we can afford the destruction of our environment.
My little hope is we get some advice by the so called less developed countries when they further develop their sludge and wastewater systems. And the study from Ruanda is anothera good example for progress!

Wish you all lots of power for your work in the field!
Heiner, the old farmer.....
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