Using a 50 gallon plastic drum to collect and biodegrade human waste.  Worms present in the toilet convert the waste into valuable fertilizer.  Uses no water, so there is no sewage to pollute groundwater.  Materials are locally available and cheap, under $50 US to build.   

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Ecological Sanitation Systems,

aka Composting Toilets

Local practices for sewage treatment in Central America include mostly septic systems in small towns.  Often, these septics are below the water table in the wet months, potentially polluting local waters where fisherman dive and surfers ride.  SWoBs built several toilets along the coast of Mexico at popular surf spots. 

Oaxaca and Michoacan, Mexico

Surfers Without Borders is a Fiscally Sponsored Project of The Ocean Foundation

copyright 2011 Surfers Without Borders

site design by Loren Luyendyk and Aubrey Falk

After the toilet fills, the waste is allowed to sit for up to six months to completely mature.  After this time, most disease causing bacteria are gone and the material is safe to use as fertilizer for trees.

We also made instructional signs to encourage proper use and maintenance of the toilet.

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