The environmental benefits of using a composting toilet are astounding.
– Firstly, you are working to help protect ground water and surrounding lakes from excessive nutrients and polluting pathogens.
– Secondly, with every non-flush, you are literally saving litres of water.
Sun-Mar composting toilet systems evaporate excess liquid (up to eight litres per day) and diffuse it into the atmosphere, meaning no contaminated polluted water is released unnecessarily into our water supplies. Whatever liquid that is not evaporated flows through an outlet drain into a small L 2m x W 0.4m x H 0.4m absorption trench. This may be only 1.5L per person per day compared with a septic system which can allow seepage of up to 125L per person per day (sewerage mixed with all other grey water).
Most Sun-Mar composting toilets require no water at all and therefore save a huge amount of water each and every use.
A four-person household using a regular toilet will flush around 95 litres of water down the toilet each day. That is about 35,000 litres per year PER HOUSEHOLD.
Waste is essentially a compilation of fluid and complex organic molecules. The vast majority of these contain carbon and hydrogen atoms. The benefit of a composting toilet is that aerobic bacteria work to break down these molecules into usable elements like water and carbon dioxide. Both of these are dissolved into the atmosphere, along with the residual moisture that is evaporated.
What remains of the waste is essentially oxidized salts. This accounts for about 3% of the original waste mass. These salts are collected in the finishing drawer and well suited to nourishing plants.
A composting toilet, therefore, works to re-introduce the nutrients taken from the earth back to the plants that they came from. A permaculturalist’s dream toilet!