Sunday, 2 November 2008

Toiletary thoughts

One aspect of the flat that has yet to encourage thought beyond what it is, is the toilet.

The toilet isn't probably a household item that gets much notice at all, except when it comes to hygiene advertisements on TV. We use it, blindly flush away, but do we ever stop to consider just how much water is being used in this process? We maintain toilets with detergents and bleach, and yet these substances are also flushed away.

With water scarcity on the risk list of worldwide resources, some might say, 'how can this be when I have water right here in my home??' But are we using that water wisely?

The following passage is taken from an article by Madhu Suri Prakash entitled "Compost Toilets and Self Rule", where she makes an interesting observation about toilets. I include this here as a pause for thought for everyone reading this blog.

"...In contrast, the abuse of water via flush toilets renders it toxic as well as globally scarce. More than 40 percent of the water available for domestic purposes is used for transporting shit. Mixing three rich, marvellous substances - water, urine, and shit - turns them into a poisonous cocktail. At a very high cost we seek to separate them again with dangerous chemicals and exotic technologies in "treatment plants." We reduce our sacred waters into chemically treated H2O that pollutes our bodies and soils and waters.

Returning our waters to the pristine purity of our ancestors' sensibility and sense of the sacred affirms the dignity and political autonomy of those who resist addiction to the technologies of professionals, bureaucrats, and centralised sewage agencies."