A composting toilet treats waste for reuse. The toilet not only benefits the environment but also helps lessen or eliminate the user's water, rubbish collection and sewer bill. Numerous brands of composting toilets work as a full-service compost bin to compost all human waste, vegetables and even outdoor garden clippings in one convenient location.
In the 1960s, Scandinavia invented the first commercial composting toilet. Prior to the invention, the composting toilet concept had been explored by designers as early as the mid 1800's, but the idea never took hold. Shortly after the Scandinavia company began to market the toilets, Canada and Australia followed suit, and by the 1970s, the idea of composting toilets had taken hold.
Composting toilets reduce excessive sewage that often reaches lakes, rivers and the ocean. Most require little to no water to decompose the waste, so the overuse of water is greatly reduced. Composting toilets work well in rural areas where septic systems are unavailable. They help to reduce the excessive rubbish at local landfills by composting not only human waste but also yard debris and kitchen waste.
The composting toilet functions by removing liquid from the byproduct and composting the remainder. It is estimated that 90 percent of all waste a toilet receives is water, according to the Lets Go Green website. The water is evaporated from the waste through a vent system. The remaining waste is decomposed through an aerobic system.
The compost created by the toilet must be removed and disposed of. In the United States, the compost must be buried or removed by a state licensed septage hauler, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The removed product should be pathogen free if the compost toilet was installed correctly and maintained.
Aerobic decomposition is achieved a number of ways, depending on the toilet system being utilized. Many units offer a heating eliminate to heat the waste and speed up decomposition. Other systems have tongs that mix the product. Decomposition worms are often utilized. Injections of air can also speed up decomposition.