A schoolgirl builds this toilet available at Amritsar airport

The trend of using sustainable toilets is giving many technological options for those who need a toilet in a poor country or aim for a more eco-friendly solution.

As reported here, Ruhani Verma, a schoolgirl native of Amritsar, claims to have constructed India’s first carbon-negative public restroom using four lakh bags of single-use plastic. The restroom is made entirely of recycled or recyclable materials. At the Sri Guru Ram Das Jee International Airport in Amritsar, Toilet 01, also known as Swachh-Alyaa, was opened by MP Gurjeet Aujla and airport director V K Seth.

Carbon negative is when the quantity of CO2 emissions you remove from the environment is greater than the amount of CO2 emissions you emit into the atmosphere.

The class of Jayshree Periwal International School in Jaipur said, “The central idea of this project is sustainability. I aimed to build India’s first structure using environment-friendly bricks. Around 30% of the brick used in making the toilet is made from single-use plastic and the rest 70% is made of waste and silica dust”.

“Waste generation, especially the single-use plastic seen littered across our countryside, is a concerning issue not only in India but globally too. This problem has only increased drastically each year. This toilet will be able to tackle this problem”, Verma said.

She claimed that no natural resources, such as soil, silica, or water, were used in the production of the Silica Plastic Blocks (SPB). They are entirely made of garbage. The building’s materials can all be recycled, and no cement mortar was used in the construction. In addition, Verma noted that an SPB brick is three times stronger than a typical red clay brick and the complete toilet building was built using modules.

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“If these (four lakh) plastic bags are lined up, they cover a distance of 150 km. The idea of interlocking bricks, like Lego blocks, was used to bind them together, as this structure uses zero water or cement to build a carbon-negative building”, said Verma, who plans to study sustainable architecture and come up with more such models to support the environment.

“Amritsar airport did not have toilets in the parking area and I thought it would be the best location for this sustainable toilet project. My school director Ayush Periwal and co-founder of SPB technology Shridhar Rao assisted me to make it possible. Airport director V K Seth-ji also encouraged me to come up with this toilet”, she said.