I have covered a food and water in the last couple of posts so the next item should be about the results of injesting both food and water. Disposing of human waste safely is very important to prepping and survival. While this can be an unpleasant subject it is very critical to maintaining your health as well as others around you.
It is sad to say but here in the USA we have fallen very behind on the infrastucture for both water delivery as well as dealing with human waste in our cities. Convention centers and stadiums are a lot more sexy and impressive compared to a water treatment plant. Many water treatment plants only have about 2 weeks worth of chemicals to treat waste water. Many sewage treatment plants are on low ground which makes them prone to flooding. Backup pumps and other redundant emergency equipment is very low priority when they are doing everything they can just to keep the main system up and running. People are stupid and will dump waste into the system without a thought or care in the world as long as the “icky stuff” goes away.
Where I live storm water flows into the canals and rivers with very minimal treatment. I doubt my area is all that unique in that respect. I can guarantee you in a grid down situation some on will dump poo in a storm drain, heck I read about folks doing it proudly in NYC as they didn’t have to pay the water bill. Now how many of your non-prepping friends and relatives have said they don’t need to store water because they will just go down to the local creek, river or lake to get the water they need.
Short term disaster (2 weeks) if the sewage system is not working can be covered by a portable chemical toilet or even a couple of 5 gallon buckets set up as potties. After the PTBs get things working again you can dump this “Black” water at your local RV dump. Long term outage will mean a bit more work but it is something you can manage. Out west many people still use septic tanks and if you have one you can accept the poo of a couple more folks with out hurting your system. You can even build a small short term septic tank system out of a couple of barrels filled with some sand and rocks to help filter the waste.
What I thought is a great system is one I saw that is an oversize outhouse that safely disposes of the waste of up to 30 people. It’s a bit larger pit than you would think to dig for an out house. It’s 8 feet deep, 8 feet long and 4 feet wide but it has a wall at 4 feet to divide the pit. You fill the bottom of the pit with small rock then sand of a foot each and you use on one half of the out house for 6 months them use the other half for 6 months. After a person dumps their load so to speak, they cover with any brown material like leaves, sawdust or straw like you would do for a compost pile. Over time the poo becomes super rich compost/fertilizer and can be cleaned out to put on gardens or fields. Then you shift back to the other side. That covers the poo but what about trash?
For trash I would recommend burning it if at all possible. Most of us just don’t have enough land to act as a mini land- fill for our trash. When you become a true prepper what you throw away as trash becomes a lot smaller compared to most folks. When you buy in bulk and make your own food your trash foot print becomes a lot smaller, add in composting and you get smaller still on your trash foot print.
You will have to do a lot of hard work to make your neighbors safe in order to make you safe. Mosquitoes and flies don’t give a crap about property lines. Rats, mice and other vermin don’t care that you are prepared and will only stay out if you are proactive to keep them out of your place.
You probably won’t be able store enough toilet paper, save those free phone books those idiots toss into your yard. I went with a colored sponge system for the long term. Each person get a special colored sponge along with gloves and a clean bucket for themselves. You can buy a 6-8 pack of the small sponges that will work if the toilet paper runs out.