Posted created in 1940 by John Buczak for the US Federal Art Project. Collection Library of Congress
During the Great Depression in the 1930s, the US Government launched a series of economic programmes collectively known as the New Deal. The largest of these programmes, run by WPA, the Works Progress Administration (renamed in 1939 as the Work Projects Administration), employed millions of unemployed people to carry out public works projects. Most famous was the WPA Federal Art Project (FAP) that employed musicians, artists, writers, actors and directors in large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects.
The FAP created over 200,000 separate works including 2,000 posters. Shown here are several posters promoting sanitation and hygiene from the WPA poster collection of the Library of Congress.
A video demonstrates the working of the prototype of the solar-powered toilet that won the first prize of US$ 100,000 in the Reinventing the Toilet Challenge issued by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The Solar-Powered Self-contained Human Waste Water Treatment System was developed by Prof. Michael Hoffmann‘s research group at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech).
In 2011 the Caltech team was awarded a US$ 400,000 grant to create a toilet that can safely dispose of human waste and reuse water for just five US dollar cents per user per day.
Solar energy powers an electrochemical reactor, which converts human waste into fertiliser and hydrogen, which is stored in hydrogen fuel cells as energy. The treated water can be reused to flush the toilet or for irrigation.
The toilet, which could cost US$ 1,000 or more per unit according to the Seattle Times, is still a prototype and would need to be adapted before it can be launched commercially.
Source: Marcus Woo, Caltech, 15 Aug 2012 ; Theodoric Meyer, Seattle Times, 14 Aug 2012
In the wake of Global Handwashing Day, the Hygiene Council has released more findings from its international HABIT Study (Hygiene: Attitudes, Behavior, Insight and Traits). Below are charts comparing handwashing and household hygiene scores for 12 countries.
Percentage of respondents who wash hands 5+ times daily
Percentage with High Household Hygiene Score
Posted in Africa, East Asia & Pacific, Europe & Central Asia, Hygiene Promotion, Latin America & Caribbean, Middle East & North Africa, North America, Research, South Asia
Tagged handwashing, household hygiene, hygiene behaviour, Hygiene Council, Reckitt Benckiser
6 October 2011, Day 21 of Occupy Wall Street.. Photo: David Shankbone / Wikimedia
Protesters participating in the Occupy Wall Street demonstration in New York have constructed a greywater treatment system to recycle dishwater contaminants. The filtered water is used for the plants and flowers in Zuccotti Park where the protesters have their base camp.
The Wikipedia entry on Occupy Wall Street has a separate section on sanitation, which was becoming a “growing concern” according to the owners of Zuccotti Park, Brookfield Office Properties. “Sanitary conditions have reached unacceptable levels”, they said, claiming that protesters were refusing to cooperate to clean up the park since their arrival on 17 September 2011. The protesters do, however, have a “sanitation working group” that sweeps and picks up garbage. In a comment on the Occupy Wall Street forum, one user said:
The Brookfield statement explains that they usually hose down the plaza and they have not been able to since the protestors are there. That’s about the only thing the protest is preventing.
Members of the OWS Sanitation Working Group. Photo: @wesupportoccupy / Twitpic
In a report on the popular US satirical programme the Daily Show, owners of nearby restaurants and delis voiced their irritation among the growing number of protesters using their toilets.
Source: Wikipedia – Occupy Wall Street ; FoxNews.com: Zucotti Park (User Submitted), OccupyWallStreet Forum, 07 Oct 2011 ; John Del Signore, Gothamist, 07 Oct 2011
Upcoming Exhibition at CDC’s Global Health Odyssey Museum Features Multi-Media Art of Handwashing
ATLANTA, Feb. 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — A gift from Georgia-Pacific Professional will help the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) highlight the health benefits of proper handwashing through a multi-media art exhibition called Watching Hands: Artists Respond to Keeping Well. The exhibition is scheduled to open in September 2011 at the Global Health Odyssey Museum on the campus of CDC’s headquarters in Atlanta.
The Watching Hands exhibit is supported through a contribution to the CDC Foundation and will showcase the importance of effective hand hygiene practices through various creative media including vinyl installation, graphic design, video projection, drawing, painting and sculpture. Handwashing is one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of many types of infection and illness in all settings—from homes and workplaces to child care facilities and hospitals.