The world is on the brink of a global food crisis caused by fertilizer shortages exacerbated by the war in the Ukraine (much of the world’s fertilizer is exported from Russia and Ukraine, as is much of the world’s wheat), Covid-related supply chain disruptions, and climate-change induced record droughts and floods. Crops need nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium (N,P,K): all of this can be found in human urine. Abe Noe Hays is the founder of the Rich Earth Institute, which is conducting groundbreaking research into this sustainable solution.
Abraham Noe-Hays has been working with dry sanitation systems since 1990. He holds a B.A. in Human Ecology with concentrations in agroecology and compost science from the College of the Atlantic, where his interest in recycling human manure was solidified by an internship at Woods End Research Laboratory and a thesis project, “An Experiment in Thermophilic Composting.” He has operated Full Circle Compost Consulting since 2001, providing complete design, manufacture, and maintenance services to individuals and institutions with dry toilet systems. He is now the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Rich Earth’s spin-off, Brightwater Tools.