Humanure to Worm Ca$tings. How your $hit could be worth more than $2/kgsteemCreated with Sketch.

in permaculture •  2 years ago  (edited)

I read a great article about Terra Preta Sanitation Solutions

and I thought I would share my ideas on how an entire industry could be created from nutrients we give away for free.  Maybe you don't think of your own excretions as 'nutrients'  but if you remember learning about the water cycle, nitrogen cycle, carbon cycle, circle of life etc you'll know what I mean.  What goes around, comes around and we need to start working with these cycles, instead of ignoring them.

 If you haven't read the Classic on the Subject, I suggest you do.  Humanure is a topic we should all be thinking about since we are facing many problems globally, that could be addressed at once, by reconsidering and reapproaching our relationship to 'the other side of the coin'.  Foodie posts are great and I am not suggesting we get into a new weird trend on the other end, but it is interesting to think that just like the garbage we produce, we like the fun of consuming but prefer not to think of our wastes and how everything cycles.  Including us.

How do I figure Anyone could make $2/kg from People Poop?  Who would buy it?

Well, really it is more valuable to keep it in your own garden, but if you were, say,  willing to process your (or other people's  (!) ) waste properly.... you could basically make worm castings, the champagne of soil additives.  This recipe includes plenty of other additions that boost the mineral and microbial potency of the end product, but just look HERE for how much regular old, run of the mill worm castings cost.

If you add minerals through additives like Comfrey and other plant mineral accumulators, Glacial Rock Dust, or one I am fond of, Azomite, you add trace elements that are hard to find elsewhere greatly improving soil and plant health.

Minerals are severely lacking in our food system.  There is very little we can do other than wait for the glaciers to come back and grind the stones to dust again for us..... or we add them ourselves.  I remember in my Permaculture studies hearing Kay Baxter say that the only soil additives she would bring in from off of her farm, were minerals. (On a Side note,  Kay is also a person my own Permaculture teacher, Geoff Lawton, was in awe of. Once, when he had a bowl of granola one morning with her, he came to realize that the milk, grain, bowl, spoon, honey and dried fruit were ALL either grown or made herself.   If someone that independent can make due without externals for just about everything, why would she make an exception for Minerals in her garden?   Must be important,no?)

Maybe you are concerned about Pathogens?

Fear not!  If you properly compost your Humanure, you create a soil that Can be used for gardening, but if you are really concerned, perhaps just fruit trees or ornamental plants can receive the bounty. Up to you, get it tested if in doubt.... buuuut worms are known to transform harmful pathogens into beneficial bacteria in their guts!  There is even a species of Mushroom you could use to ensure greater safety.  The link here is for one especially used in Mycoremediation of E. Coli.

How to make Biochar, Simply

Primitive Technology: Charcoal         Or if you want something REUSEABLE

Check HERE for info on Biochar.

Here is an interesting variation of this system:

Fernglade Farm - Worm Farm Humanure System - Permaculture and Organic

Obviously, this is just for their own farm, but the idea of this post is to simply expose some interesting ideas and get some gears turning.  Maybe some DIY solutions, perhaps a Multinational Corporation that literally, is the Shit, of everyone. 

 Feel free to take the idea and sit on it.  ;)

Who knows?  How long could it be til people are selling Worm castings on and getting paid in STEEM?

THINK ABOUT IT.  Give a Shit, butt decide where.



This Kenyan Company Is Turning Poop Into Cooking Fuel

Cooking with Poop? Amazing Energy Created by Bio Gas

Your #1 Source for #2 Solutions....


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Someone has to say it .... that's some good shit man :)

My internet was down while editing, should be even shittier now.

Beautiful! Yes, terra preta and methane digesters are two topics I still want to address in my taking care of business series. One thing that keeps coming up, when thinking about dealing with other peoples' sh*t are the poisons they ingest. Of course, I can avoid antibiotics, or only take them in exceptional emergencies. But seeing how physicians are throwing that stuff around like candy, and ignorant patients eating it all up, thinking they are being responsible... honestly, I would feel sorry for the worms (and their whole biota). Maybe certain cases just call for anaerobic decomposition.

Yeah, I didn't want to dive too deep, but The Humanure Handbook gets into a viable business or Municipal waste program that could be done. Geoff said that the microbiological activity should be able to breakdown or lock up toxins. Bioremediation (willows, cattails, living machines etc) and mycoremediation, particularly garden giant, is excellent for breaking down the pathogens... but if it was something like heavy metals, you could use fungi to hyperaccumulate them. But really, if I was to suggest this to anyone, I'd recommend all types of decomposition.... Hot compost, myco digestion and worms to eat whatever was left. Sadly, the food system itself makes our own compost questionably organic from all the stuff in the water, whatever ends up in leaves from along the roads, gmos, pesticides etc.... If you got really fancy, you could TRY to work with mostly 'clean' eaters, but really, even the strictest Vegan might have some stuff you might not want to deal with.... but philosophically..... it is sortof a metaphor for the individual and collective situation. Our shit is just too bad to deal with, so we have to keep ourselves separated from the very cycles we depend on while justifying a linear false reality for ourselves and the world.
Now you see maybe why I wanted to avoid it...
Shit gets DEEP, Fast.

I had a feeling @stortebeker would weigh on on this one :)
Also mind blown on that return comment @ecoknowme

He keeps me in shape.

Good gif response

I added two videos related to Biochar from poop that can be used for cooking and another for biogas from the same for the same :) Now to wait for it to get locked into the Blockchain! AH hahahahahahaha

Good shit, just upgraded my steempower shit, glad to help, nice post

Thanks @bubke !

Milorganite is a fertilizer from Milwaukee made from sewage sludge. I remember seeing it back in the 1970's and it's still sold today. Actually, it's been in production for almost 90 years I believe. It's a very old idea that may finally be accepted. :))

Thanks for that @princessperibanu ! I would have to agree with @stortebeker here on this one though... poop is fine, but everything else we put in ourselves or our sewers needs to be considered. There is a great documentary that features the various solutions Canadian cities have taken... one of which also provides sewage based fertilizers for FREE but the material provided is full of condoms, microbeads, pharmaceuticals, industrial wastes AND processed feces :/ I found a preview to the doco here:

The difference with HUMANURE is that it doesn't need to come in contact with water, can be processed on site or at a proper facility and can avoid contamination from society's weird habits.

Awwwww, thank you @jayjayjeffery ! I'm really pleased to hear! and happy to know the ideas will spread further! Hopefully changing minds and composting old falsehoods. I tip my hat to you, @ecoknowme

Sadly people just don't get this concept. An acquaintance of mine years ago told me about some "humanurists" she was with in colorado..... they had an outdoor setup. Upon finishing your business, you would sprinkle pine shavings all over it for odor control then they had their own way of processing the shit. Which i don't recall all the mechanisms of that. But always thought it was a cool and forward thinking process. (Even though it comes from the rear..... couldn't help myself!)

Feel free to excrete any inappropriate thoughts here. This is the #2 place for it. Twitter still reigning champ.

Agreed about shitter,i mean twitter

Crazy, i am going to resteem a shit story!

Funny how upside down the world is, eh? I was thinking of a Food post, but this has universal curiosity....

This post received a 2.7% upvote from @randowhale thanks to @ehzi-dehve! For more information, click here!


Don't know if you've gotten the chance to check out the book, "The Humanure Handbook." I recently got a copy and this book is so thorough on the subject it's pretty insane. Dense reading for a subject most people are uncomfortable with.

Yes I referenced it 3 times in the post. But it is hidden in the hyperlinks ;) The main website is great! The entire second edition is available for free from him (how did you hyperlink in comments, that's great!) and I gave a shortcut to the chapter specifically on Pathogens so people could have their concerns addressed by the expert, not me. I really wish it was in every school, municipal waste office coffee room... or at least a common enough word like how Permaculture went from 'what?' to 'oh yeah' in a decade or so.... somehow, Humanure is still taking time. Thanks for the reminder to those who might also just look for the essence down here in the comments @jayjayjeffery I waffle between sneaking things in and blatantly promoting stuff I love, that isn't mine.... but my love and enthusiasm for the information or work of others IS mine ;)

Haha I figured you'd have to know about it.

Hyperlink in comments by using [ ] around the work and () around the link address ... and butt them up together
I imagine it's going to get a lot more common as time moves on. One big issue is the municipal laws against it ... but isn't that an issue behind a ton of cool permaculture concepts, they're somehow illegal! That's why I'm trying to get into City Planning with Permaculture design. It needs to happen!

  ·  2 years ago (edited)

My Permaculture teacher told us a story of a retired Univeristy professor going to his City Council and shoving his compost in their face. Luckily one or most were gardeners and remarked on how nice and fertile it looked and he pointed out it was his crap, so why not give us the permits!?!?!? And it worked!

Blown away by your meme game

thanks @drabs

oh the power of poo.. there's some good sh*t in this post!

Life is compost. Until you are composted.

must be shittin bricks out here

I might cover that in another article.... "Your House is the Shit" HyperNatural Building....

Great Post.

Thank you for giving a shit @shasol !

What do you mean by Shit! please mind your language.

Please read the post next time. But if you are unfamiliar with the English expression, it is a slang way of saying 'thank you for Caring'

I did not know that thanks for letting me know.

Most Welcome, sorry for the surprise, but always good to learn new things :)

loving this exchange of comments. You had me actually LOL'ing @ecoknowme

Good for Bladder control. Keep Sawdust handy though...

  ·  2 years ago Reveal Comment

Thanks @keks I do requests if you have a topic you would like me to cover
Cheers @ecoknowme