Bill Gates is celebrating “World Toilet Day” (November 19th) in a big way by revealing the winners of last year’s ‘Reinvent the Toilet’ challenge from The Gates Foundation.
Caltech has taken home the top honors and a $100,000 prize with a solar powered commode that generates hydrogen and electricity. Loughborough University pocketed $60,000 and second place with their toilet that produces charcoal, minerals, and clean water. These two models as well as some of the other awarded designs will be on display in Seattle at the ‘Reinvent the Toilet’ fair.
While redesigning the lowly latrine may seem a dirty job, The Gates Foundation stresses the huge amount of good that can come with waste management innovation. 2.5 billion people worldwide do not have access to modern toilets and this encourages the spread of many diarrheal diseases, resulting in the deaths of over 1.5 million children annually. Poor sanitation generally accounts for more deaths annually than measles, HIV/AIDS, and malaria combined.
The fair looks to bring together designers and investors to revolutionize sanitation efforts worldwide. Check it out here