top of page


In 2019, our summit was titled "Policy, Regulation, and Moving to Implementation of New Technologies." We co-hosted it with the University of Michigan's Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering on November 7-8 in Ann Arbor, MI. This Summit was funded by the National Science Foundation's Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS) program. 


​We continued to build momentum for urine diversion with a growing team of experts. Entrepreneurs, engineers, farmers, regulators, researchers and practitioners all came together for two days of creative conversation and inspiration. Together we discussed the latest breakthroughs in toilet innovations, treatment technology, pilot projects, and progress towards popularizing urine diversion across North America and beyond.


Bringing Stakeholders together to Transform Policies and Regulations of Onsite Water Systems
Paula Kehoe, Director of Water Resources, San Francisco Public Utilities Commission

Paula is responsible for diversifying San Francisco’s local water supply portfolio through the development and implementation of conservation, groundwater, and recycled water programs. Paula spearheaded the landmark legislation allowing for the collection, treatment, and use of alternate water sources within San Francisco.

Regulations Panel

We hosted a special panel on regulation challenges and opportunities, featuring Chris Wilson from the Hampton Roads Sanitation District, Laura Campbell from the Michigan Farm Bureau, Pete Cavagnaro from Water Resources Recovery Solutions, Lynnette Claudon from the VT Department of Environmental Conservation, and moderated by Glen Daigger.


UM Urine Diversion Tour

Abe Noe-Hays presented Rich Earth's new patented freeze concentration process to turn urine into concentrated fertilizer. We toured the G.G. Brown building in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department to see a urine diverting toilet and urinal as well as the urine processing room underneath where the new freeze concentration technology is installed. The research team at the University of Michigan and Rich Earth Institute partnered to build these restrooms and processing room to provide a complete, automated process in order to transform the urine from waste to fertilizer.

On day two, we focused on bathroom fixtures and urine treatment technologies that are rapidly evolving. We showcased the latest innovations and options which are becoming available at the home and building scale. Researchers and practitioners from around the world presented on different treatment technologies. Then we hosted a series of lightning talks on pilot projects including Pete Muñoz of Biohabitats, Conor Lally of Nutrient Networks, Ben Howard of the Rural Community Assistance Program, and Aldo Jansel.

With guidance and direction from Nutrient Networks and RECODE of Oregon, a Task Force is forming to address regulatory pathways for alternative sanitation initiatives across the country.


Aurea Heusser, from Eawag, presented on the latest in urine treatment technology in Switzerland. Here she displays the final fertilizer product, Aurin.

Arthur Davis presented Rich Earth's Urine Nutrient Reclamation Project to summit attendees.

Ben Howard received the 2019 Golden Funnel Award.

bottom of page