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Finding an Eco-Friendly Porta John or Outhouse

written by: Jayant R Row•edited by: BStone•updated: 8/5/2010

New techniques have been developed which allow waste from outhouses and Porta Johns to be treated using very little water. They also leave practically no end products that require disposal. Such an eco-friendly Porta John is the green way to go for social and other events.

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    What Is an Eco-Friendly Outhouse?

    Portable toilets Porta Johns are needed whenever there is a public gathering for events that are temporary in nature. It could be a wedding, an exhibition or convention or even a construction site. There are a number of companies that will rent out such facilities for a day or two, or for longer periods. The environmental impact of using such facilities has been a talking point, and therefore now utilizing an eco-friendly porta john has become a step that these companies advocate.

    Porta Johns utilize a number of chemicals to function properly. For example, the holding tank that will hold waste is deodorized. With a green Porta John, chemicals are used that are non-toxic, free from formaldehyde and alcohol. Cleansers and solvents used in such a green facility would also be biodegradable and non-toxic, instead of the aerosols, butyl and glycol which are otherwise used. The waste from such Porta Johns has also to be considered while deciding its eco-friendliness. Toilet paper used should be recycled material as well as chlorine free. Water used in the stalls should be conserved through adequate dispensing systems.

    Companies that provide restroom rental services abound in most cities and sources from the web can easily point you in the right direction. If you make a specific request for facilities that are eco-friendly, most of these companies would be able to provide you with what you are looking for. Costs may be slightly higher, but with the demand for such services growing, the volume of the business is bound to drive down prices. City planning councils have also got into the act; licenses for holding public events are being given with specific requirements for environmentally-friendly facilities.

    Image Source: Wikipedia: Portable toilets

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    Green Outdoor Restroom Facilities Are Now Available

    Habitations that are far away from towns and cities and isolated in nature would have no sewage disposal systems nearby. Such cottages or cabins would need outhouses for the use of people inhabiting them. Nowadays you can have outhouse facilities that are eco-friendly and do not cause any form of pollution. Some of the outhouse toilets are even designed so that the waste can be burned after 40 or 50 uses, reducing it to ash and water vapor. Such units do not need any plumbing or water supply, electricity or holding tanks. The burning even sterilizes the storage chamber so that no washing is ever needed.

    Outhouses can also be used as composting toilets. After each use the waste is covered with wood shavings and the paper used is biodegradable. This reduces the smell in the toilet. Once this is covered the urine and excrement is absorbed and starts to breakdown. The waste is removed once a week and deposited in a separate compost area. Rinse water can be dumped into the compost heap to aid decomposition. Grass trimmings, kitchen waste and hay can be added to the compost heap and turned over every time material is added. The waste breaks down into material that can be used as a fertilizer for your garden.

    Choosing an eco-friendly Porta John or outhouse is such an important eco-conscious decision. Be responsible for your and your group's waste — avoid the toxic chemicals and go green.