Human waste

Human waste (or human excreta) refers to the waste products of the human digestive system, menses, and human metabolism including urine and faeces. As part of a sanitation system that is in place, human waste is collected, transported, treated and disposed of or reused by one method or another, depending on the type of toilet being used, ability by the users to pay for services and other factors. Faecal sludge management is used to deal with fecal matter collected in on-site sanitation systems such as pit latrines and septic tanks.

The sanitation systems in place differ vastly around the world, with many people in developing countries having to resort to open defecation where human waste is deposited in the environment, for lack of other options. Improvements in "water, sanitation and hygiene" (WASH) around the world is a key public health issue within international development and is the focus of Sustainable Development Goal 6.

People in developed countries tend to use flush toilets where the human waste is mixed with water and transported to sewage treatment plants.

Children's excreta can be disposed of in diapers and mixed with municipal solid waste. Diapers are also sometimes dumped directly into the environment, leading to public health risks.


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This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Human waste, and is written by contributors. Text is available under a CC BY-SA 4.0 International License; additional terms may apply. Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.