Bill Gates’ foundation puts money on solar-powered toilet

Times Live Reuters 15 August 2012.

The world’s leading private philanthropist handed a $100000 prize to the California Institute of Technology on Tuesday for its work on a self-contained, sun-powered system that recycles water and breaks down human waste into storable energy.

Gates is focusing on the need for a new type of toilet as an important part of his foundation’s push to improve health in the developing world. Open defecation leads to sanitation problems that cause 1,5 million children under 5 to die each year, Gates said, and Western-syle toilets are not the answer as they demand a complex sewer infrastructure and use too much water…