Bill Gates unveils waterless toilet that turns human waste into fertiliser

Bill Gates unveils lavatory of the future and says he loves 'few things more than toilets'

Bill Gates unveils lavatory of the future and says he loves 'few things more than toilets'

He was appearing at the Reinvented Toilet Expo in Beijing, China, talking about the need for safe sanitation throughout the world and the Gates Foundation's role in funding better sanitation options.

Gates unveiled that toilet at a trade event in Shanghai, China, where he lauded the globalised and free trade systems that made the toilet technology possible.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which has flushed $200m over seven years into loo research, reckons that 4.5 billion people do not have safe access to safe sanitation.

"I have to say, a decade ago I never imagined that I'd know so much about poop", Mr Gates joked at the conference.

Gates went on to explain that the aforementioned pathogens cause diseases that kill almost 500,000 children under the age of 5 every year.

The showcased products aim to revolutionise sanitation technology by operating off-grid to separate liquid and solid waste and remove harmful by-products.

"The current toilet simply sends the waste away in the water, whereas these toilets don't have the sewer".

Gates' foundation has committed about $200 million to the toilet project and expects to spend the same amount again before the toilets are viable for wide-scale distribution.

"They take both the liquids and solids and do chemical work on it, including burning it in most cases".

According to Sky News, Gates compared the change from traditional toilets to waterless models as similar to developments in computing around the time he founded Microsoft in the mid-1970s.

"In the way that a personal computer is sort of self contained, not a very big thing, we can do this chemical processing at the household level", he said.

"This year the volume of toilets will literally be in the 100s while people are still kicking tires (testing them)", he said.

Gates, who was accompanied by a jar of human feces during his expo speech, shared that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will invest an additional $200 million to help decrease the costs of new sanitation goods for the poor and establish new market development in regions where anti-pathogen products are most needed.

"The problem will get worse if we don't do something about it", said Gates.

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