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John Schinnerer
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Ashland, Oregon, United States
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Semi Arid

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Eco-Cabana systems design - blackwater and more

Posted by John Schinnerer over 13 years ago

Alternative building project will have blackwater as well as graywater systems

This is a brief intro to this particular project - more news (and eventually pictures) as it happens.

A friend of mine who is a long-time builder and cabinet maker and also has an interest in alternative building materials and methods is building a prototype-demonstration dwelling that he calls an "eco-cabana."

My participation in the project involves designing and implementing a variety of systems for transforming dwelling inputs and outputs. The most exciting to me is that a conventional low-flush toilet in the main bathroom will feed a biological blackwater transformation system. The system will be based on the "Watson Wick," more formally called something like a subsurface treatment constructed wetland system.

Some info on the Watson Wick from Art Ludwig's Oasis Design site:


Here we have an abundance of volcanic cinder, which will be used in place of the pumice used elsewhere. Another major consideration is that this system will be constructed in a windward (wet) tropical maritime climate, whereas apparently most Watson Wicks have been built in relativley arid temperate climates.

If anyone here has information or experience with such a system in climates similar to East Hawai'i Island, please let me know!

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John Schinnerer has permaculture experience in:
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