Oh crap! Blackwater remediation policies, technologies and products | U.S. Green Building Council
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Oh crap! Blackwater remediation policies, technologies and products

GBCI: 0910000357

New developments in sustainable and ecological building, new technology sewage, and waste disposal
Eligible for 1 CE HOUR.
  • 1 CE

  • LU

Published on: June 25, 2014

Average: 3.5 (6 votes)


With new developments in sustainable and ecological building, new technology sewage and waste disposal has emerged. The concept is to upcycle waste as valuable resource instead of flushing it away and allowing it to cause ecological damage on important aquatic ecosystems. Emerging technologies can be aesthetically pleasing, viably retrofit, and sanitary. In addition, the use of these technologies can save water, capture important nutrients as fertilizers for grounds, and are cost effective.

This course is a recording of a live webinar hosted on May 28, 2014.


  1. Identify environmental issues in current sewage infrastructure
  2. Assess the sustainable sewage options
  3. Choose appropriate sustainable sewage options for existing and new construction buildings
  4. Understand the maintenance and biological requirements for systems
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Created by

GreenHome Institute
Grand Rapids, MI
United States


Atara Jaffe

Project Coordinator CitiLog
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Total 7 commentsLeave a comment

Real Estate Manager, CBRE

This presentation had great descriptions of alternative technologies that are not often seen or discussed but are a huge opportunity for sustainable development and/or operations. The presenter is obviously passionate about sustainability and I appreciate that she doesn't let the stigma of the topic keep her from discussing this important topic.

Mechanical Engineering Department Manager, Burns & McDonnell Engineering

presenter was excellent handling a foul subject with tact and import

Purchasing Agent/Energy Manager, City of Haverhill

This was very informative! I was pleasantly surprised by the level of information and how smooth it was presented.

Purchasing Agent/Energy Manager, City of Haverhill

This was very informative! I was pleasantly surprised by the level of information and how smooth it was presented.

CEO/Founder, The Green Building Center

This is noted as a basic presentation and is appropriate to that level as noted in other comments. A couple of critiques of the presentation itself:

1. On one slide a 1.6gal flush toilet is noted as a 'low flush' toilet. This is a bare minimum code compliant toilet, not low flush. Low flush is considered 1.28 or less typically. Some of the technical information needs to be checked. More discussion on building codes and restrictions/approvals to use alternate fixtures would be beneficial to include as noted.

2. Many slides stay on the screen for 1-5 minutes a time while being talked over. There are a lot of bits of useful information being discussed but it is not captured in the slides. I would suggest that more slides be added to this presentation and they move quicker to demonstrate all the points. Looking at the same slide for this length of time and trying to pick up on all the information being discussed is not as engaging as it could be and difficult to keep the listener's interest in my opinion.

3. A substantial amount of time is spent talking about urine diverting toilets. I believe that Atara actually is involved in the sales and distribution of these fixtures through Rosie's Natural Way. Any product that they sell which is discussed in this presentation should be clearly disclosed as part of the presentation either at the beginning or the end I think. This is a potential conflict of interest and a bit 'commercial' otherwise.

4. The words 'UMM' and 'AHH" are used a lot throughout this presentation. I counted well over 30 instances in last 30 minutes of the presentation alone. These should be eliminated. A lot of times people don't realize they are doing it.

5. End of the presentation includes 15 minutes of Q&A from the webinar. Screen is blank during this time and host and speaker are having a dialog. Not sure this should be included or not. Most webinars I have ever taken do not have this.

Owner - Building Sage, Integrated Design + Energy Advisors, LLC
Pro Reviewer

Agree with Prasad, this is an introductory presentation on waste-water reduction systems. Many systems are described and touched upon to give an overview of what is currently available. There is a mix of applications to homes versus commercial buildings.

More information is needed on the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) issues, and how to resolve them through partnerships and education. Specific applications are mentioned, but not described in very much detail.

LEED Fellow, LEED Faculty, Principal,, zenerG
Pro Reviewer

This is a basic level course that points out some of the waste-water (black-water) reduction and treatment technologies available. Its well-rounded as an introduction that would be useful to building owners, users, designers, contractors and maintenance personnel.

If you are looking for technical details for on-site waste-water management, you won't find them here. The course is a little light on the policy side where the presenter explains that the waste-water treatment issues are sensitive for the local municipalities, but there is little explanation about the different types of building codes in the country (or world) that are helpful to, or hinder black-water reduction strategies.

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