Resources for Reinvented Toilets

At the far end of the distributed water infrastructure continuum are reinvented / re-imagined toilets (also known as “non-sewered”) that use little to no water and have the potential to revolutionize the way we build, finance, and manage water and excrement.  They’re a unique enough aspect of distributed infrastructure (note that we didn’t write “water infrastructure” since they tend to not use water!) that we’re giving them their own page. If you notice errors, or know of additional resources that could be included, please contact Lynn Broaddus at LBroaddus @ (actual email address does not have spaces in it). 

(For general information on distributed water infrastructure, click here.)

Reinvented Toilet Resources: 

  • ANSI Reinvented Toilet Technology in Development:
    • Includes list of specific toilets that are in various stages of development, as well as a link to download the international standard (ISO 30500) standard for “non-sewered sanitation systems”, adopted in October 2018. In December 2019 these standards were published as the adoption standard for both the US and Canada.
  • Reinvent the Toilet Challenge: Program overview, 2011-2013
    • Though versions of waterless or low-water toilets have been around since the pit latrine, in 2011 the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced their global “Reinvent the Toilet Challenge” aimed at finding affordable, sustainable sanitation for the developing world. This is an overview of the program’s goals and its 2011, 2012, and 2013 grants.
  • Partner Resource List:
    • Assembled and maintained by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, this is a useful compendium of other global organizations and coalitions working on this issue. Includes “Shit Flow Diagram” studies, the Toilet Board Coalition and many other links that are sure to pique your curiosity.
  • Reinvented Toilet Expo, 2018 (Beijing):
  • The Toilet Papers: Designs to Recycle Human Waste and Water: Dry Toilets, Greywater Systems & Urban Sewage. 1978. Sim Van der Ryn.
    • Oldie but historic goody, back in print. This throwback is a fun reminder of just how long we’ve been trying to figure out how to reinvent our modern-day, water-hogging toilet.



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