Terra Preta Sanitation (TPS) is an astonishing biowaste/sanitation system of a highly advanced ancient culture. Terra Preta shows great potential for soil building and nutrient recycling from excreta. TPS was developed through the inspiration from the rediscovered historic practice and is researched at the Institute of Wastewater Management and Water Protection of the Hamburg University of Technology. TPS systems treat excreta and produce valuable soil amender, thus closing the loop between sanitation and soil amendment.
Originally, this technique consists of urine diversion, lactic acid fermentation (LAF) with charcoal additives and subsequent vermicomposting by earthworms. LAF suppresses odour formation and sanitizes the excreta. Subsequent composting and vermicomposting additionally sanitize the substrate and a nutrient rich humus is produced. This product can be utilised as a soil amendment for non-food purposes in forestry or agriculture. Such sanitation systems are capable to contribute attaining particular Sustainable Development Goals of the UN.
Terra Preta Sanitation Learning Tools