By Benjamin Cost
Pictured right is the mayor of Yuzhong District in Chongqing as he smiles for the camera before eagerly gulping down a bottle of water made from liquid manure. He’s doing it to promote a new sewage treatment plant in Chongqing’s Yuzhong District which has successfully extracted potable water from liquid feces. According to base technologist Yangchao Hong, it’s the one and only plant in China where dung is converted into drinking water:
“After the settlement of condensate filter, digestive degradation, nitrogen and phosphorus removal, sludge digestion, odor control and water purification system to take process, the manure can drink!”
We’re not the only people who find this amusing – “leader drinks poop water” is one of the top trending searches on Baidu today.
The Yuzhong Mayor’s manure-glugging sought to further convince stubborn “shit-water” skeptics that this reclaimed water is actually drinkable.
However, despite multiple tests supporting the purity of the H-poo-O and a display proving that it’s even fit for a mayor, people remain uncomfortable with the notion of hydrating themselves with processed waste-water.
But why? Is it the dirty connotation? Anyone who’s ever showed up to a highschool biology class knows that their “naturally pure and mineral-balanced” Evian was at one time bathed in by dinosaurs. Additionally, every molecule of water that we drink has been contaminated for eons by a whole host of chemicals.
Plus, considering the environmental degradation that would result from continuing to scour the rivers and lakes for water, implementing a dung-to-drinking water conversion policy in China’s cities seems kind of brilliant. Squeamishness and fear of “losing face” clearly have no place in an issue of this magnitude.
What do you think, Shanghaiist readers? Should Shanghai consider adopting the new dung-treatment method? Perchance we should be somewhat reluctant considering Shanghai can’t even obtain potable water from, well, water.