The expression, “I need to take a crap,” originated, at least according to some accounts, with Thomas Crapper, an English plumber and businessman whose name adorned his company’s toilets.
It would be a great honor for the work Dr. Shannon Yee and his research team have been doing to develop an improved toilet to provide safe sanitation for billions of people around the world.
More than that, if this expression (which Yee fully supports) catches on, it would be a positive sign that our foundation’s efforts to spark a global sanitation revolution have been a success.
That was the dream a decade ago when our foundation challenged the world to create a toilet that doesn’t rely on sewage systems, doesn’t smell, and won’t cost more than a nickel a day to operate. The Reinvent the Toilet Challenge generated hundreds of new innovations in how to process human waste, including toilets and fecal sludge treatment systems that produce electricity, clean water, and fertilizer.
Yee, an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology, is now leading a group of researchers and private sector partners to take the best of these ideas and package them into a new, low-cost toilet—the Generation 2 Reinvented Toilet (G2RT)—to provide safe, affordable sanitation for the world.