Eco-Waste, Water Plans Aid Kenya's Poor

By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2008 5:03 PM CDT
Eco-Waste, Water Plans Aid Kenya's Poor
A vendor transport bananas in a wheel barrow at a market, Wednesday, June 4, 2008 in the Kibera slum in Nairobi, Kenya.    (Associated Press)

Sewage and sunlight are offering unexpected aid to the poor of Kenyan slums, the AP reports. Public toilets are recycling waste into gas, while sunlight disinfects water and reduces cases of waterborne illness. Adapted from a plan in Tanzania, the project was funded by international donors to help people struggling with high coal and food prices.

The bio-latrines cost pennies to use and have helped a school for orphans hire two new teachers. The coins also pay for other gas projects—34 are currently in progress around Kenya—and incidents of people tossing out waste in plastic bags are down. "You know fuel is expensive, that's why we came up with the idea of generating energy from human waste," one outreach worker said. (More biofuel stories.)

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