If You Have To Go, Go Green

by Dennis Machicao

Now this might sound like an unusual subject to write about and many of you will not be able to relate directly to it but it caught my interest because I was staring right at it. Urinals. I really wasn’t much aware of it but they are going green.

On a recent car trip to Maryland, I stopped at a brand new highway rest stop right on the boarder of New Jersey and Delaware on Rt. 95. As I was taking care of business, I noticed that they had installed a brand new type of urinal and there was a small sign on the wall explaining how they work and how they benefited the environment.

It seems that these urinals do not flush with water, they do not flush at all. They are waterless and work with gravity. A cartridge is installed at the base of the urinal that takes care of odor and filters any sediment as liquid passes through into the drain.

With this type of urinal there is no handle to touch, no sensors or flush water pipes to install, no moving parts at all.  The maintenance and sewage costs are reduced but the best benefit of all is to Mother Earth because it is estimated that approximately 40,000 gallons of water a year can be saved and more in heavily traffic areas.

The one that I had personal contact with was manufactured by Sloan but in researching the subject I found that other companies like Falcon, Kohler and American Standard also have models that work on the waterless concept.

And don’t think that a urinal is just a urinal; oh no, they have been redesigned to give them a more modern and stylish appeal. As Kohler describes them on there website, www.kohler.com, they “feature innovative, stylish characteristics that integrate a natural ellipse with an architectural feel.”

I thought that this rest stop was just a one-off but, to my surprise, at another New Jersey rest stop that had recently been renovated, there it was, another Sloan urinal was staring me in the face. Hopefully this will be a trend in public restrooms that can certainly make a positive impact in water conservation.

This is just another example of how companies are making our lives a little greener by manufacturing common everyday products that will help the environment. Hopefully more public restrooms will see fit to take advantage of these products that will, in the long run, save them costs and the environment at the same time.

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