We need to talk about toilets

I got published! After a long time writing this thing, and then quite a bit of heavy editing, I appeared in print.

Sometimes when you stop and think for a moment, the things we do can seem a little strange. For example flushing the toilet. It is a wonderful system: clean, hygienic, and effortless – the greatest accomplishment for public health of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. But, then, I’m shitting and/or peeing into 10 litres of fresh drinking water, thus immediately turning it into toxic waste, adding a few chemicals like bleach or toilet freshener, cooking oil poured down kitchen sinks and unused medicines washed down hospital sinks. It’s then pumped through an underground sewer network, joined by heavy metal-containing runoff water from roads and industrial areas. And not to forget the 159 toilet rolls per household per year – that’s about 270,000 trees flushed away every day worldwide according to the WWF. And then we try to get all the stuff that went into the water, out again – at great expense – the water was needed only for transporting our waste from A to B.

Can this really be the best way to deal with our daily excretions?

Download the article in PDF form here:


See the Die Maske website for more information about the project: http://www.diemaske.at/ – click the little union jack for the Union Jackish language.

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