The Big Necessity

The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters

George, Rose

Book - 2008
Average Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5.
The Big Necessity
Human waste is a major public health threat: population growth is taxing even the most advanced sewage systems, and the disease spread by waste kills more people worldwide every year than any other single cause of death. Even in America, 1.95 million people have no access to an indoor toilet. Yet the subject remains unmentionable. The Big Necessity takes aim at the taboo, revealing everything that matters about how people do--and don't--deal with their own waste. George also explores the infrastructure disasters waiting to happen and the potential saviors: from China's five million biogas digesters to the U.S. Army's personal lasers used by soldiers to zap their feces in the field.

Publisher: New York : Metropolitan Books, 2008
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 0805082719
Branch Call Number: 363.72 G348b 2008
Characteristics: 288 p. :,ill. ;,24 cm


From Library Staff

List - Trash talkin' by: multcolib_tamaf Jul 07, 2014

Did you know that even in the U.S. almost 2 million people have no access to an indoor toilet? Me neither.

And it’s not only in developing countries that human waste is a major public health threat. Disease spread by waste kills more people worldwide every year than any other single cause of d... Read More »

It isn’t hidden behind the bathroom door or quietly flushed down the toilet in this book: a look at the dirty details of what happens to human waste around the globe and how it affects our health and sanitation.

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Jun 14, 2014
  • IPL_Mandy rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

We always here about the need for clean water in developing countries, but I never thought about the reasons why. This book clearly and thoughtfully explains why much of the available drinking water is contaminated around the world - a lack of proper sewage sanitation. While this sounds like an unappealing topic (toilets, sewers, methods for waste disposal), it is told through stories about individuals and how they cope in their daily lives, and of people who are creating innovative ways to deal with the problem. It's even entertaining and funny at times. Serving suggestion: a tall glass of clean water and anything with fibre


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