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Water Conservation and Composting Toilets

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Water Conservation

The Humble Commode

According to the EPA “Toilets are by far the main source of water use in the home, accounting for nearly 30 percent of an average home’s indoor water consumption.” 

Curious about our own personal water usage, we decided to gather some data. We tracked how much water we used for two months using our rinse container. 

What’s a rinse container? After you pee in a composting toilet, you rinse the bowl with a bit of water. Our current rinse container,  an upcycled agave bottle, holds 44 oz. of water. We’ve experimented with a few different containers – a slightly smaller soap container, a slightly larger water bottle – this size worked well.

  • From December 10, 2022 to February 10, 2023, we tracked our water usage. We used 994 oz. (7.78 gallons) of water. Averaged out over the 62 days, we used 0.13 gallons of water per day.
  • A newer model traditional flush toilet uses 1.28 gallons of water per flush

What does this mean? 

It takes us just shy of 10 days to use the equivalent amount of water as one flush.

From a water conservation perspective, the composting toilet makes sense to efficiently dispose of waste. 

Obviously, this does not take into consideration the water used to rehydrate the coco coir we use as cover material and is not reflective of our entire water usage, just what goes down our toilet. Though, as compared to traditional flush model toilets, the composting toilet is an underappreciated superstar in the lens of water conservation efforts. 

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Larissa Farrell

Environmentalist, yogini, sex educator, & graphic designer.