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TitleIndividuals’ perception and the potential of urine as a fertilizer in Ethekwini, South Africa : a paper presented at the second conference on deve...
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsBenoit, N
Pagination11 p.; 1 fig.; i fig.
Date Published2012-10-29
Place PublishedS.l.
Keywordsagriculture, behaviour, dry filtration, faecal sludge management [FSM], fertilizers, urine treatment

Climate change, environmental degradation and unsustainable consumption of resources are increasingly putting a strain on the Earth’s natural wealth. More sustainable sanitation behaviour such as using wholly UDDT (urine diverting dry toilets) can help alleviate the strain on water resources. Urine could be used as a fertilizer as it contains nitrogen and phosphorus. Furthermore, with urine as a fertilizer, it would now be free, accessible to all and decrease our need to mine phosphate. This paper explores the perceptions and knowledge of farmers in the eThekwini municipality about urine and its use in agriculture. It seeks to understand if this practice would socially acceptable in order to contribute to the debate of food security. To investigate the attitudes towards urine, interviews were conducted with farmers who consult with the UmBumbulu Agri-Hub and at the Newlands Mashu Permaculture Learning Centre (NMPLC). These interviews were done in order to find out their views of urine and its possibility on integrating ecological sanitation, more specifically urine reuse in their programmes. Preliminary results illustrate that individuals’ self-perception, that of others and non-motivational factors such as smell and lack of training remain as barriers to usage as well as lack of knowledge about its potential for fertilizing capabilities. In Zulu culture urine seems to be utilised in various ways and is deemed acceptable for medicinal or spiritual purposes. Nonetheless, there seems to be a negative perception of urine amongst most respondents. Even so, many farmers expressed curiosity towards the use of urine in agriculture. [authors abstract]

NotesWith references on p. 10 - 11
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