As many people are aware, urine is a veritable gold-mine of nutrients that plants love – like nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. Don’t go peeing all over your houseplants just yet, though. Other compounds found in our urine can be damaging to plants, not to mention creating unpleasant odors. However, Treavor Boyer, a professor at the University of Florida and a team of his students have embarked on a journey that could eventually lead to being able to use all the urine we flush every day.
So far, they’ve developed a source-separation technique that can pull the valuable nutrients from flushed toilet and urinal water. According to the professor, the nitrogen flushed during one University of Florida football game is enough to meet the needs of fertilizing the football field for a year. So they are recycling wastewater (and saving drinking water) into an eco-friendly fertilizer (that won’t contaminate drinking water with harmful chemicals)? Yes! Double win!