Add any general discussion comments relating to compost toilets

35 Responses to general

  1. Chandra says:

    Your writing style is engaging and conversational. It feels like having a knowledgeable friend sharing insights. To learn more, click here.

  2. Chandra says:

    Your writing style is engaging and conversational. It feels like having a knowledgeable friend sharing insights. To learn more, click here.

  3. Nicky says:

    Kia ora
    I first asked questions on this site way back in 2014 when we were setting up a bucket and wheelie bin composting system on our land out on the coast. Three years on after many weekends out on our land, the wheelie bin is full and I need to get on with getting a new wheelie bin ready for use this summer.
    A composting loo beats a long drop hands down! Much more pleasant to have the smell of wood shavings than a smelly hole underneath.
    While confident with managing the day to day aspects with the composting loo, I do have queries and a few concerns around getting the compost to adequately compost. I suspect that ours has been too dry as I would have expected it to be more decomposed in the bin…but I don’t know. Is there anyone out there in the Waikato region that has a set up similar to ours? Be great to talk to someone about it or see someone else’s setup. Also happy to share how we set up and work ours if others are thinking of doing the same. Can be contacted via email if anyone has any suggestions or questions about our loo –
    Thanks Nicky

  4. corinne says:

    Hi no way to email ou or phone you directly?

  5. tim wernham says:

    I am a Victoria University student writing a report on the benifits and drawbacks of composting toilet systems in aid type situations. After reading about your level of involvment in the Christchurch earthquakes I wondered if it would be possible to contact somebody within your organisation directly to ask some questions? you can contact me via email
    Thanks for your time

    Tim Wernham

  6. K H says:

    PS. We live in Christchurch.

  7. K H says:

    We’ve been using a bucket receptacle and dedicated compost heap system for months, and want to continue. We had a source of sawdust, but its going to run out soon. Does any one know of good sources of sawdust or similar suitable cover material?

    • admin says:

      Hi there… not sure if anyone got back to you about that. When we were doing the workshops we were using sawdust from city firewood.

  8. Chris mcdonald says:

    im after about 5+ 20 litre buckets

  9. Good morning
    My name is Tammara Mckernan. I manage the kerbside collection contracts for rubbish, recycling and organics for the Christchurch City Council. I was looking through your website and notice that in the ‘how to empty’ section reference is made to emptying in to a wheelie bin. As our kerbside collection services use wheelie bins I am concerned that some residents may feel that the toilets can be emptied into the kerbside bins. I was wondering if it would be possible to clarify that the wheelie bin referred to is not one of the Council’s kerbside bins. Possibly something along the lines of:

    NOTE: If you are in an area where the Council provides kerbside collection services in wheelie bins please do not dispose of human waste in these bins.


    Tammara Mckernan

  10. bindu says:

    Fantastic workshop this morning. The three presenters were great and knew their stuff. Thanks!

  11. Heidi says:

    I love this site 🙂
    Yipeeeeee you guys rock

  12. Heidi says:

    Hi, I’m moving to Otautahi in 2 weeks time and am happy to help with workshops and getting people started. I have my own loo set up in Golden Bay and have seen many different systems in use around this area.

  13. bindu says:

    Great informative website. Found it in the Press today. This is just soooo good. Thanks!

  14. Peter says:

    Hi guys,

    thanks for setting up this web site and getting your article printed in the newspaper. Great job! I don’t live in Chch but I have always had an interest in alternative solutions to “brown & yellow waste” treatment. Keep up the good work!


  15. claire hunter says:

    hi there -i just wanted to share with you my experience of composting toilets. i live in amberley – north canty, and our family of 4 have been using a composting toilet for almost 2 years. i have had no problems at all with it – in fact my kids find the whole town sewerage thing really gross and wierd!. We have 3 nappy buckets with lids and as one gets close to three-quarters full, the lid goes on and is left outside the loo till all 3 buckets are full. Im the only girl in our family and i find the fella’s mostly pee in the great outdoors – so our 3 buckets only need emptying and cleaning once a week or so. We mainly use sawdust as the dry material – sometimes mixed with straw/dry grass clippings or raked up leaves and twigs. i know of another family who use the compostable plastic-like bags to line the buckets to stop the actual plastic of the buckets smelling …but i find that all smells are eliminated from the cleaned buckets with exposure to the sun for a few hours. its great to see this website specifically for chch residents. Well done, Claire

  16. Phil Orr says:

    I have been using a 20l bucket at our hoilday property for the last 3 years, its been great pee and poo in the same bucket, (men pee in the bush).

    We have found that the room where the 20l bucket is does not stick at all, its more pleasent than toilet at home 🙂

    We have an external compost bin, made up of 4 old pallets. And we have 2 sets of these set up we filled one of the last two years and have just started on the second one so letting the first one sit for a year or so now.

    We have had no problem that we have noticed with any leaching

    Go CHCH I was thinking at how we could implement something like this up there.

    Let me know how I can help,

    Cheers from Invercargill

  17. I have been a great believer in composting toilets for years. I learned how to build and use them from Frederick Hundertwasser the famous Austrian artist and architect. He was a close friend and a passionate believer in the simple ‘bucket’ version of the humus toilet.
    One thing I personally believe is important to optimize this wonderful way of ‘giving back to mother nature’ in an environmentally friendly and sustainable way, is to use mainly humus soil to cover the shit. Natural humus has got all the bacteria it needs for a smell free and rapid decomposition. I use two large buckets, one in use, the other one to allow time for proper and total decomposition once it is full. I then recycle from the one containing completely decomposed humus to cover the shit at the bucket which is in use. I sometimes add a little leave and plant material from the forest floor like tea tree leaves or other fine forest humus on top of the forest floor.
    It is wonderful to know that you discard of human waste in such a sustainable, smell and fly free way! Hundertwasser used these toilets wherever he lived inside his home, in Vienna even in his flat in the 5th floor! No smell but the joy to be in harmony with Papatuanuku.
    For more information e-mail me at

  18. Jo Atara-McKenzie says:

    Hi Guys, thanks for coming to ChCh and leading the example of how to live more sustainable.

    Planning now on how to set up our own compost toilet in our wee flat.

    May your tribe increase!

    • admin says:

      Thanks Jo,
      If there is anyway we can help as you build your compost toilet in your flat, let us know.

  19. greg says:

    congratulations all you good people. taking responsibility for your own shit.
    with christchurch being a swamp, the last thing we want is all that shit in the waterways! i would like to see everyone taking this level of self responsibility and cleaning up our beautiful waterways so we can really be proud of where we live as well as being able to eat the kai from the streams, rivers, estuaries, beaches and ocean.
    i have been composting my humanure for about 10 years now and am very satisfied with the outcomes. i encourage everyone to get on board with this great inititive to save your waterways and save yourselves 🙂

  20. admin says:

    * conversation continued offline. Rosemary is now composting her humanure. Go Rosemary!

  21. Bridget Mather says:

    Hi, I work at a Dallington Community Hub and a local resident Rosemary is interested in a composting toliet. She is unable to build one herself but is willing to pay someone to build one in her backyard. Do you have any people to recommend that could do this for her?
    regards Bridget

  22. Dawn says:

    Hi Lisa

    Awesome that would be great. As to when, not sure as yet; it will take some time to organise the talk/find a suitable venue/get speakers etc, but probably sometime in May, or June at the latest. Would you be able to email me so I can contact you directly once we have a date?


  23. lisa says:

    Hi Dawn,

    Sounds good. When exactly are you thinking? I live in wanaka, and would be happy to make a trip up if the timing works.


  24. Dawn says:

    Hi Lisa, the local Greenpeace volunteer group, currently headed by myself and Siana, is organising a talk, the aim which is to increase awareness of/get involved with environmental initiatives for our new city. One of the ideas was to have you talk about composting loos. Would you be willing? We’d love to have you come along! 🙂 Cheers, Dawn.

  25. Laura Shiels says:

    I am in Christchurch today through Thursday, March 24. While I’m here I would like to help with your efforts (March 22 is a particularly good day for me to assist). I have experience composting and would be very happy to help people build composting toilets or anything else that would be helpful. I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks, Laura

  26. Terry says:

    go the compost toilets. We fortuntely still have our sewage connected, but always wanted a compost toilet. Thanks for the tips and designs.

    • Natasha Gall says:

      Good to use one anyhow as the Christchurch treatment pant is broken (estimated 5years to repair) so currently all Christchurch sewage is going untreated into the sea. Sumner and Brighton beaches are pretty much a no go zone till this is sorted out.

  27. George says:

    Thanks guys. Looking forward to this, as we have been stuck for some time.

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