The tiny island of Lakshadweep is set to become the first town in the country to install nearly 12,000 eco friendly toilets in its buildings – local and those owned by the government. The move is aimed to save the fragile ecosystem of the island, which is under severe threat due to acute sewage disposal problem caused by increase in local population and tourists. A study conducted by the Thiruvananthapuram – based Centre for Earth Science Studies (CESS) had concluded that sewage treatment cannot be established at the island due to non-availability of required slope as the ground water is just 1 – 2.5m from the surface. And thus, bio-toilets developed by DRDO has been proposed at 27 islands. The human waste enters the biodigester through toilet inlet and flows through different chambers and in this process gets degraded by the microbial consortium – bacteria called psychrophilic found in Antarctica region – present in the tank.
The bio-digesters are gradually becoming a hit in various sectors too. The Union Urban Development Ministry has sought installing them at all Metro stations across the country. Even the railways are in the process of conducting trials for bio-toilets based on biodegradable technology.