Dumping Plastic Bags

The International Compost Sanitation Forum and Message Board: Humanure Composting Around the World: Dumping Plastic Bags
Author: George Robinson (George_robinson)
Wednesday, September 05, 2007 - 2:43 pm
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Well, I just dumped my first plastic bag of solid humanure (w/o urine). I dumped it into a local campsite toilet (which has a holding tank) through the toilet seat hole. Using disposal gloves, I placed the open end of the plastic bag down into the hole and lifted the other end. Everything just fell out without any mess whatsoever. I then placed the bag into another one, threw in the disposal gloves and threw all into the garbage bin. It took several weeks to fill the bucket (bag) of humanure as I go to the property infrequently. The sawdust cover material seemed to dry everything out and made the contents slide out easily. At first I was concerned about putting the bag into the garbage bin until I looked inside and saw several dirty disposal diapers laying on the bottom! There is absoutely no smell with using the sawdust toilet and emptying was very easy. I am happy with this toilet and the empting approach for now as I will only generate a few buckets (bags) of humanure per year. Maybe some day I will end up composting.

Author: TCLynx (Tclynx)
Saturday, July 28, 2007 - 6:50 pm
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I wouldn't worry too much about the bucket getting dirty. If you have a little compost bin set up you simply wash and dump into the compost bin and add a bit of cover. Let the bucket air out in the sun if you notice an odor.

You are likely to have far more unpleasantness from plastic bags since you have to deal with disposing of the nasty plastic after you empty it. If you are simply looking for a way to dispose of it, you might be better off putting the bag and all in the trash. I don't support that choice though.

You will likely have a far bedder experience dumping your buckets into a pile and composting them. Some urine is important in the buckets and compost to help it heat up and kill any pathogens.

Author: Rich (Richard_w)
Tuesday, July 24, 2007 - 1:30 am
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I hate to say this - but your idea sounds like you are in for an unpleasant experience. Personally, I would not use the plastic bag. Get a bucket with air tight lid (like a used 5 gallon paint bucket), fill that with your sawdust/humanure, empty it when it gets full using water to wash it out, wash your hands and you're done. No mess, no plastic bag in the landfill, and no dirty knife.

If you eventually compost the humanure (and you should) read up on the subject. The Humanure Handbook will tell you everything you need to know. And by the way, I would leave the urine in - it will make the pile heat up.

I've emptied compostables from plastic bags before when that's all I had at the time to collect them with. It's not the easiest thing. It's not that terribly difficult, it's just that the contents usally sling out of the bottom in a somewhat uncontrolled fashion and I've ended up wearing some of it on my trousers. No big deal when it's watermelon juice, but poop is something else.

Hope that helps. Good luck!

Author: George Fredrick Robinson (Selin)
Monday, July 23, 2007 - 3:41 pm
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Would anyone like to share their experiences and procedures that you use to dump plastic bags full of humanure? I just set up my new sawdust toilet and put a plastic garbage bag inside the 20 litre pail. I read that the plastic bag helps keep the pail clean and odour free. Now I have to figure out the best way to empty the plastic bag when it gets full. Never having done this before, I would like some advice. We have the toilet set up at our woodlot and will only generate a few bags per year. Initially, I plan to dump the bags in a local park toilet (an outhouse toilet c/w holding tank). Later, we may consider burying or composting on our land. I'm assuming the bag's contents will be not be very wet due to the sawdust initially placed in the bottom of the bag and that used for cover material after each deposit. Also there will be very little urine deposited. The bag's contents being in this rather dry, semi-solid state may not come out of the bag easily? I'm thinking I got a couple ways of dumping. Wearing disposable gloves either: turn the bag upside down hold the bottom corners and give it a shake OR hold the bag right side up and slice open the bottom with a knife (now the knife is contaminated) and shake it out. When finished place the bag and gloves inside another bag and take to the landfill. I'm sure someone has worked out a better (less messy) way to do this. I would appreciate your views/ideas. Thanks.

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