N E X T .

The Zero Organic ‘Waste’ Home

2015-17 Open, agroecological homemaking lab in Hong Kong

  • Everyday laboratory ‧ rooftop compostopia ‧ urban soil stewardship ‧ self-reliant ecosanitation

Under the program of the Research Institute for Sustainable Urban Development (可持續城市發展研究院), in collaboration with Wanho Tam, Six Hang, Benson Law, Qing Lam, Sophie Wunderlich, PoHeng Lee, and Jennifer Lyon.

In this real-life demo lab of agroecological homemaking, all organic residues of a two-person urban household, including human ‘waste’, were processed one floor above on the rooftop of the apartment block into veritable soil. With ample dedication the project set a precedent for sensible reuse of biomass on residential premises without disturbing public order. Using bacteria power, rain-water harvesting, material upcycling, and neighbourly networking, the operation ran without electricity chemicals and pristine resources.

Over the two years of operation, the Zero Organic ‘Waste’ Home upcycled about 100 liters of kitchen scraps, 700 laters of fermented urine, 70 liters of faeces. Together with 200 liters of locally sourced rice bran, 100 liters of woody residues, and 20 kg of forest soil, the combined kitchen/toilet byproducts were processed into 500 litres of black soils for horticultural use.

Upcycling organic residues on rooftop as social occasion.
Upcycling operation simply with discartet materials.
Preparing bokashi from scratch with rice bran and mycelium.
Rice husks, saw dust, and bamboo leaves to be biocharred.
Biocharring session.
Release of wood-gas in rocket stove.
Biocharred bamboo leaves.
Kitchen scraps and toilet residues processed odour-neutrally with bokashi.
Urine/wood humification and bokashi composting equals soil.
Rooftop furniture and planters from scavenged palettes.
Biopedagogic Mobilisation
Local organic byproducts made into black soils.
Biopedagogic Mobilisation
Uplift rocket stove for pyrolisis of woody 'waste'.
Biopedagogic Mobilisation
Closing organic material streams locally.