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2020 Summit Recordings 

Watch recordings of the presentations and check out the discussion saved from the chat in accompanying PDFs below. 


Dr. Nancy Love

As Principal Investigator of the National Science Foundation’s INFEWS project: Advancing Technologies and Improving Communication of Urine­-Derived Fertilizers for Food Production within a Risk­ Based Framework, Dr. Nancy G. Love will discuss this collaborative project and her vision for the future of urine diversion and reuse. Dr. Love is the Borchardt and Glysson Collegiate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University Michigan, and an adjunct Professor at the Institute of Biotechnology at Addis Ababa University. In collaboration with her students, Dr. Love works at the interface of water, infrastructure and public health in both domestic and global settings.

Advances in Nutrient Recovery


Dyllon Randall (University of Cape Town, South Africa)
Nitrogen and phosphorus recovery from stabilized human urine

Dr. Randall is a chemical engineer by training and is currently a senior lecturer in water quality engineering at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. He heads up the research group focusing on resource recovery from human urine. In 2018, he led the team that produced the world’s first bio-brick “grown” from human urine.


Mahlet Melaku (Addis Ababa Institute of Technology, Ethiopia)
Nutrient recovery as Struvite: The Case in Ethiopia

Mahlet Melaku is a faculty member in Addis Ababa Institute of Technology, School of Civil and Environmental Engineering with research interest in affordable and sustainable sanitation. 



Brandon Clark (Stanford University, USA)
Selective recovery of ammonia nitrogen from wastewaters with transition metal-loaded polymeric cation exchange adsorbents

Brandon Clark is a 2nd year graduate student in the lab of Dr. William Tarpeh at Stanford University. His focus is on materials design for selective resource recovery from wastewater.


Hang (Lucas) Dong (Stanford University, USA)
Electro-assisted regeneration of pH-sensitive ion exchangers for ammonium and phosphate recovery from hydrolyzed urine

Hang (Lucas) Dong is a postdoc in Dr. William Tarpeh’s lab at Stanford University. His focus is on selective material and process design for resource recovery.

Nobuyo Watanabe (Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering, Columbia University, USA)
Membrane Technologies for Nutrient Recovery from Source-Separated Urine

Nobuyo Watanabe is an undergraduate researcher majoring in Chemistry. She joined the Yip Lab at Columbia University last summer and is currently involved in nutrient recovery research using membranes. 

Daniella Saetta (Arizona State University, USA)
Bacterial communities in urine collected solely with nonwater urinals: Was fecal contamination avoided?

Daniella Saetta is a PhD candidate at Arizona State University. She has been an enthusiastic urine diversion researcher since 2014.


Sudeep Popat (Clemson University, USA)
Engineering the electrochemical ammonia stripping process for nitrogen recovery from source-separated urine

Dr. Sudeep Popat is an Assistant Professor in Environmental Engineering and Earth Sciences at Clemson.  His research group focuses on anaerobic biotechnologies and electrochemical technologies for resource recovery from domestic and industrial wastewater.  His group is currently working on a project funded by NASA to develop microbial and electrochemical technologies for resource recovery from wastewater during space missions.


Collection, Management, & Use


Neha S. Jagtap (Arizona State University & University of Florida, USA)
Urine collection in a multi-story building and opportunities for onsite recovery of nutrients and non-potable water

Dr. Neha Jagtap graduated from the University of Florida in 2019 under the supervision of Dr. Treavor Boyer. After her 1st year as a PhD student, she moved with Dr. Boyer to ASU where she spent the next 3 years. Neha’s research focused on selective nutrient recovery from urine to produce multiple fertilizer products. She now works for Hazen and Sawyer, in Orlando, FL.

Louise Raguet (Independent, France)
With Marcelle, let’s collect women’s urine too!

Louise Raguet is a Paris-based designer. In collaboration with scientists, sociologists, dry toilets companies or farmers, she works for closing the nutrients cycle between cities and agricultural countryside. She designed a female urinal called Marcelle, that is produced in France and for sale in Europe. She is also a member of the designer group called L’Assemblée des Noues, tackling social and environmental issues, especially about food, farming and education about nature.

David Berg (DLB Planning, USA)
Can Urine Diversion Lower Nitrogen Loads to Coastal Waterbodies?

David Berg is a consultant to Long Island public and private entities working to reduce nitrogen loads to surface waters.  Prior to this work he was an environmental analyst and land use planner at an engineering consulting firm, where many of his projects involved wastewater planning and environmental restoration.


Diego Lima Medeiros (Federal University of Bahia, Brazil)
Human urine logistics for nutrient recovery: the energy, environmental and economic performance

Diego L. Medeiros is an environmental engineer with a master’s and a doctorate degree in industrial engineering. He works as a post-doc researcher at the Federal University of Bahia (UFBA) in the topic of water-energy-food nexus in resource-based sanitation.

Stephanie McCartney (Columbia University, USA)
Thermodynamic and Energetic Analysis of Nitrogen and Phosphorous Recovery from Wastewaters

Stephanie McCartney is a rising 4th year PhD student at Columbia University’s Department of Earth and Environmental Engineering. Her research focus is nutrient recovery from wastewater. 


Lucinda Li (University of Michigan)
Exposure to viruses from toilet flushing: comparing urine diverting to conventional toilets

Lucinda Li is a 3rd year graduate student in the research groups led by Dr. Nancy Love and Dr. Krista Wigginton at the University of Michigan. Her research centers around the risks and benefits associated with source separation technology and the use of fertilizers

Design & Practice

Lightning Talks & Discussion

Jojo Linder (Kompotoi, Switzerland)
Mobile Toilet as a Resource

Jojo Linder is the co-founder of Kompotoi, Switzerland. Jojo Linder was a Project Manager and Event Organizer has organized sports events himself. Through studying permaculture he became aware of compost toilets and wanted a better solution for the event industry. Kompotoi has around 400 mobile toilets in use in Switzerland.

Chris Canaday (Fundación Omaere, Ecuador)
A Simple Waterless Urinal for Use in Homes

Chris Canaday is a biologist from California who has lived in the Amazon for 30 years, promoting Ecological Sanitation for the last 20 of those.
He also works on birds, protected areas, ecotourism, and natural medicine.

Tore Knos (Disaster Aid USA)
Developing Countries: Pollution and Fertilizer

Dr. Knos received his PhD from the University of Georgia in 2001 and taught Construction Management at the Southern Polytechnic University in Marietta GA. He also had a company that performed commercial and residential inspections throughout GA before selling in 2010. He is currently retired and volunteering in disaster relief worldwide with Disaster Aid USA, a Rotary affiliated organization. He has extensive experience with sanitation including as a licensed plumber for over 45 years. Dr. Knos has written a book on sanitizing human waste and using it as fertilizer by using a Urine Diverting Dehydrating Toilets (UDDT). Rotary has listed him as a sanitation expert and uses him to evaluate sanitation related grant applications. He has worked in developing countries worldwide.

Aldo Jansel (Aztech Sustainable Sanitation, LLC, USA)
Presenting the Aztech Cali 2.0 Portable Toilet STATION

Aldo Jansel is the founder of Aztech Sustainable Sanitation and has been researching, building and developing sanitation solutions for the last four years in 31 countries. Thanks to funding from a Clifbar, he’s finished the second version of the Calli Portable Toilet prototype which treats human excreta with solar thermal energy and produces potable water and enriched biochar. Aldo has written a book called “Swimming for Toilets” where he narrates the journey of swimming across the Strait of Gibraltar to fundraise the construction of compost toilets in México. When not thinking about shit, Aldo can be found swimming, cycling and running around the world. 

Container-Based Sanitation Alliance

Notes from the Field

Container-based sanitation (CBS) is an affordable and hygienic sanitation service ideally suited to addressing the sanitation need in dense urban areas. CBS toilets collect human excreta in sealable, removable containers that are transported to treatment facilities when full. It involves a service that provides toilets, collects and returns containers and safely disposes of, or reuses, excreta. CBS providers tackle urine in varying ways and, while no CBS provider has to date focused on recycling urine, there is significant potential in this area. Join the CBS Alliance, a coalition of CBS practitioners around the world, to learn more about the alliance, the work of its members and the opportunities and challenges of integrating urine reuse into the CBS business model.

Kory Russel
Kory Russel is an Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Studies at the University of Oregon where he teaches courses on sustainable and human-centered design, courses on water, sanitation and public health, as well as course in Environmental Studies. He has conducted extensive research internationally including in Haiti and Mozambique.

Virginia Gardiner
Virginia Gardiner is the CEO of Loowatt and the inventor of the Loowatt toilet system. Prior to establishing Loowatt in 2010, she worked with a number of award-winning product and design companies. Virginia holds a joint Masters in Innovation Design Engineering from the Royal College of Arts and Imperial College London and a BA from Stanford University in Comparative Literature.

Lauren Harroff
Lauren Harroff is a member of the Citywise team at Sanergy, which applies Sanergy’s experience in Nairobi to address worldwide urban sanitation challenges. Previously, she has led research and development on pathogen inactivation, reuse processes and greenhouse gas emissions from sanitation and waste treatment. Lauren holds a PhD in Biological and Environmental Engineering from Cornell University and a BS in Biosystems Engineering from Clemson University.

David Crosweller
David Crosweller is a co-founder of UK based Sanitation First. He was instrumental in its focus being primarily sustainable sanitation and, later, in its name change in 2016. He continues to strive for a practical, economic solution to bring decent sanitation to the world’s poorest people.

Urine Use in Africa: a Case and Some Early Speculation

Presentation & Panel

Aminou Ali (FUMA Gaskiya, Niger)
Ali Maman Aminou, is an Agronomist, and currently the Director of the Maradi farmers’ unions’ federation, “FUMA GASKIYA”. He is also the PI of the McKnight Foundation’s CCRP-sponsored Women’s Fields project in Niger. The project works on options by contexts among which low cost fertilization using human urine.

Batamaka Some (Collaborative Crop Research Programme (CCRP) Regional Representative West Africa, Burkina Faso)
Batamaka Some is an anthropologist and research consultant based in Burkina Faso. He has conducted research in agriculture and gender, mainly focusing on rural livelihoods strategies, food security, agricultural productivity and market access, and cash crop farming in Africa. As the Regional Representative of the McKnight Foundation’s Collaborative Crop Research Program, he works with grantees to advance the program’s mission and efforts towards agroecological transition. 

Mary Richardson (CCRP FRN Learning & Exchange Coordinator, USA)
Mary Richardson is a consultant and researcher based in Canada. She works with the Collaborative Crop Research Program where she is engaged with Farmer Research Networks (FRN). FRNs are guided by principles, such as farmer participation and agency in the research process, and research that provides practical benefits to farmers and supports learning and knowledge sharing through networks. Mary will share some of the learning about how these are supported in relation to agroecology research projects.

Rebecca Nelson (Cornell University, USA)
Rebecca Nelson’s laboratory works on disease resistance in crops with a focus on maize, with broader interests and activities relating to agroecology and food systems.  Her laboratory is analyzing the genetic architecture of quantitative disease resistance and dissecting mechanisms that impair pathogen development, with a special interest in mycotoxin resistance and management. Through the McKnight CCRP, she supports a portfolio of research projects aimed at improving food security in developing countries in Africa and Latin America. She co-teaches courses in international development and public health.  She worked at the International Potato Center (CIP) in Lima, Peru from 1996-2001 and at the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines from 1988-1996.

Kevin Mclean (Sun24, USA)
Subsistence Farmers in Africa using Urine as Fertilizer

Kevin Mclean is the president of Sun24, an NGO.   In partnership with the Catholic and Anglican churches, Sun24 has trained millions of women in Africa and Asia to add rock beds to their open-fire cookstoves.  Rocks are free and improve the efficiency of these cookstoves by a third.  Among other activities, Sun24 is working toward using this vast network to train smallholder farmers to use urine as fertilizer on their crops.

Urine Fertilization Practices

Lightning Talks & Discussion

Robert Cossette (NRC Bio Innovation, France)
Robert Cossette is an engineer and eco-entrepreneur born in Montreal, Canada. He now lives in France and is the inventor of the ORIAZ Solar-Dripper.

John Culpepper and Katie Culpepper (Compost for Good, USA)
Producing a viable compost from human urine, water, and sawdust

John Culpepper: Co-founded Compost for Good to help communities around the world to upcycle all appropriate organic materials to: reduce greenhouse gas emission; keep resources in local communities; create business opportunities; help solve water quality issues; and lower the cost of food and fiber production.

Katie Culpepper

With a background in farming and education, Katie co-founded Compost for Good to bring composting solutions to communities around the world. Her hope is that this compost work contributes to local resilience, soil health, community food production and minimized landfilling.

Renaud de Looze (La Palmeraie des Alpes nursery, France)
Using Urine Fertilizer for Potted Plants

Renaud de Looze studied at the Polytechnic University of Brussels. In 1995, he founded the Palmeraie des Alpes, a nursery in Isère (France). He has always experimented with techniques for recycling organic waste and wastewater as fertilizer in the garden and agricultural field. In 2016, following his investigations, he wrote a book “L’urine de l’or liquide au jardin“. With original illustrations by designer Paul Avoine, this book explains how urine can be used as an effective and natural fertilizer. More than just instructions for the home gardener, this book gives information on the legal status and agronomic value of urine, the impact of salt on plants grown with urine, how to fertilize without polluting. Renaud suggests combining urine and compost and several modes of application: before or during the growing season, in soil or in pots. It also gives the appropriate dosages for the main cultivated plants (ornamental or vegetable).

Community Scale Urine Nutrient Reclamation Program

Presentation & Participant Panel

Since its inception in 2012, the Urine Nutrient Reclamation Program (UNRP) has grown from about 600 gallons/year of urine collected to over 10,000 gallons/year. The program now involves almost 200 participants from around Brattleboro, VT and supplies pasteurized urine fertilizer to 4 different farms for use on hay fields. This panel begins with a short presentation on how the program works from UNRP director Arthur Davis and then features a panel that includes urine donors, farmers, builders, and legislators to share their perspectives on involvement with this unique program.

Arthur Davis holds a B.A. in Geology and Environmental Studies from Oberlin College and has been a urine donor for the Rich Earth Institute for many years while living in Brattleboro where he grew up. Arthur’s first experience working with alternative human waste systems was at Oberlin where he worked as an operator of a Living Machine Wastewater System, a closed-loop grey-water recycling system designed to mimic the nitrogen removal processes of wetlands. He has also worked as an educator and engineer aboard the Schooner Adventuress in the Puget Sound, teaching about the Puget Sound ecosystem and resource conservation aboard the ship. He is excited to be back in southern Vermont, working toward completing the food nutrient cycle. At Rich Earth, Arthur directs the Urine Nutrient Reclamation Project and coordinates Rich Earth’s new festival toilet business, as well as working on ongoing research.

From Individual Practice to Infrastructural Change


Moderator: Nadav Malin (President, Honorary AIA, LEED Fellow) 
Nadav Malin is a passionate facilitator, leading workshops and retreats to help organizations of all types find alignment, inspiration, and leadership in pursuit of their goals. He convenes peer networks of architecture firm Sustainable Design Leaders, Sustainable Construction Leaders, and others. He facilitates gatherings and consults to USGBC, AIA, large corporations, government agencies, and architecture firms. And he helps project teams with charrette facilitation and design process support to achieve optimal outcomes.

Treavor Boyer (Arizona State University, USA)
Treavor Boyer is an Associate Professor in the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment (SSEBE) at Arizona State University (ASU), and is Program Chair of the Environmental Engineering undergraduate degree program. His research interests span water quality and treatment with numerous projects on innovative applications of ion exchange technology such as PFAS removal from impacted water and nutrient recovery from source separated urine. Dr. Boyer is the recipient of an NSF CAREER Award entitled “Sustainable Urine Processes through Integration of Education and Research (SUPER).” Dr. Boyer earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in environmental engineering from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and his B.S. degree in chemical engineering from the University of Florida. Dr. Boyer was previously an Assistant Professor and Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental Engineering Sciences at the University of Florida.

Harald Gruendl (EOOS NEXT, Austria)
Dr. Harald Gruendl is designer and design theorist. He is managing director of the social design enterprise EOOS NEXT which is currently working for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) on several sanitation projects which are piloted in South Africa and India. With a grant of the BMGF the urine separation technology “Urine Trap” is currently industrialized with several international partners.

Will Tarpeh (Stanford University, USA)
William Tarpeh is an assistant professor of chemical engineering at Stanford University.  He leads a research group focused on designing and evaluating novel separations to recover valuable products from wastewaters. Will completed his B.S. in chemical engineering at Stanford, his M.S. and Ph.D. in environmental engineering at UC Berkeley, and postdoctoral training at the University of Michigan in environmental engineering. Will has recently been honored as an Environmental Science & Technology Early Career Scientist, Forbes’ “30 Under 30” 2019 Science List, Gulf Research Program Early Career Fellowship, and Chemical and Engineering News Talented 12.

Laura Allen (Greywater Action, USA)
Laura Allen is a founding member of Greywater Action, a nonprofit educational organization, and has spent the past 20 years exploring low-tech sustainable water solutions. She authored The Water-Wise Home: How to Conserve and Reuse Water in Your Home and Landscape and Greywater, Green Landscape. Laura leads classes and workshops on rainwater harvesting, greywater reuse, and composting toilets, and works on policies and codes for water reuse systems in the west. She is on the technical advisory committee for the International Association of Mechanical and Plumbing Officials’ (IAPMO) Water Efficiency Standard (We-STAND) and is the board president of the California Onsite Water Association. 

Pauline Souza (WRNS Studio, USA)
Pauline is an architect with 36 years of experience in the industry, Partner, K-12 sector lead and the Director of Sustainability at WRNS Studio. Some notable projects include the first Net Zero certified Library – Stevens library; a Top Ten COTE project – the Janet Durgin Guild and Commons, and the Microsoft Campus in Silicon Valley using LBC Water Petal and WELL.

Aurea Heusser (Eawag – Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, Switzerland)
Aurea Heusser is a PhD student at ETH Zurich in the department of environmental engineering. Her research takes place at Eawag in the department of process engineering where she is working on the treatment of separately collected urine in order to produce a fertilizer.

Dan Marks (Wastewater engineer, USA)
Dan is a registered engineer in Vermont and Maine practicing wastewater engineering design with 12 years of experience. He is also a member of Rich Earth’s board of directors.

Art & Education

Lightning Talks & Discussion

Shawn Shafner (The POOP Project, USA)
Building EcoSan Community: A Travelogue from Pee to Shining Pee

Shawn Shafner is founder of The People’s Own Organic Power Project, creating award-winning theater, film, podcasts and educational events catalyzing conversation about sustainable sanitation from the floor of the United Nations to the mountains of Rwanda. Shawn is also an accomplished theatre artist, educator, and mindfulness coach devoted to manifesting a world of creativity, community and joy.

Kim Worsham (FLUSH, USA)
Things We Can Learn from Toilet History

Kimberly Worsham, MPA, MIWM is the Founder of the social enterprise called FLUSH and a water and sanitation specialist with over a decade of experience. She has consulted on projects globally including India, Australia, Kenya, Ghana, Rwanda,  Cambodia, and the US.

Marine LeGrand (Ecole des Ponts ParisTech, Programme OCAPI, France)
Reclaiming or Commodifying? Pee and Poo on the screen

I am an anthropologist engaged in a creative research approach. My work focuses on social practices that redefine the inclusion of human bodies in the cycles and rhythms of the living, in a post-industrial context. I am since 2018 researcher and facilitator in the OCAPI program (Water Environment Urban Systems Laboratory), in France.

Aroussiak Gabrielian (University of Southern California, USA)
Posthuman Habitat

Aroussiak Gabrielian is a speculative designer working with biological materials, natural systems, and atmospheric phenomena. Her design work aims to torque our imaginaries to help us re-think our interactions with both human and non-human agents on this planet. Aroussiak is co-founder and Design Director of foreground design agency, Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture + Urbanism at the School of Architecture, and Affiliate Faculty of Media Arts Practice at the School of Cinematic Arts, both at the University of Southern California.

Thieu Custers (Bio-social designer, Netherlands)
Bodyponics, or what it takes to grow a single salad

Thieu Custers is a performative researcher and designer, working on connecting the fields of arts and science. With his projects he aims to distill big topics to something understandable, to argue or agree about.

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