New Red Sea bacteria could be the key to developing saltwater toilets | The Optimist Daily
Today’s Solutions: July 16, 2024

Freshwater is a scarce and valuable natural resource. Humans couldn’t survive without it, so why do we waste precious freshwater to flush our toilets? Researchers from Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) are trying to solve this water-wasting dilemma with the creation of a saltwater toilet, and they’re using a new variety of bacteria to help them do so.

Traditional sewage treatment systems use two types of bacteria to treat sewer water and remove nitrogen before it is recycled into our waterways, but one of these varieties: anaerobic ammonium oxidation bacteria, only works in freshwater.

To get around this roadblock, the researchers cultivated bacteria from the Red Sea called Candidatus Scalindua sp. AMX11. This new type is 90 percent effective at removing nitrogen from a nitrogen-rich seawater solution. The team’s research was published in the Water Research journal, but the next step towards developing a saltwater toilet is testing the treatment method in a larger scale sewer system. 

On a planet where water is a precious resource, converting our toilets to use salt water is a great solution for large scale water conservation with a minimal impact on people’s daily lives.

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Colombia’s battle against deforestation achieves remarkable results

BY THE OPTIMIST DAILY EDITORIAL TEAM Colombia's deforestation rate dropped to its lowest level in 23 years, marking a significant milestone in the country's ...

Read More

US track star Allyson Felix opens the first-ever nursery for Olympic parents

BY THE OPTIMIST DAILY EDITORIAL TEAM The upcoming 2024 Olympic Games in Paris are expected to make history, not just by achieving gender parity, ...

Read More

Sweden to introduce off-grid communities that fully sustain themselves

To ensure that communities around the world become future-proof and resilient in the face of climate change, it’s essential to create development models that ...

Read More

‘Million-mile’ EV batteries are near. The impact could be massive.

Electric vehicles (EVs) have a clear environmental advantage over their gas-guzzling counterparts, but when it comes to longevity, the two are in dead heat. ...

Read More