Headline Muse, 10/8

There are microbes in water that spoil it
You can’t drink till you treat it or boil it
But the still greater cost
Is in lives that are lost
So it’s worth re-designing the toilet

Headline: Hi-tech toilets save lives–and mean big business

In 2011, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation launched the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge, awarding $3.2m in grants to promising entrants.

The conditions were tough. Designs had to be hygienic, sustainable, cheap to operate, and capable of working “off-grid” – without connections to water, electricity, or sewerage networks.

They have given out their awards. Worth reading about.

I do hope they are investing not just in the hardware, but also in local-level cultural change; there is not only a lack of equipment, but the presence of tradition, that acts as an impediment to change.

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