F-art

Recycled art at Kitengela

Recycled art at Kitengela

Anyone who has been to Kitengela Glass near Nairobi will instantly recognize the works of art made from recycled glass, metal and other materials. Stunning works by local artists support a huge community of people and beautify gardens, offices, institutions and homes. I bet you aren’t expecting me to talk about crap right? Wrong!

Kigengela art glass

Kigengela art glass

Creating art from recycled glass takes a huge amount of energy. The glass recycling factory produces tiles, windows and other items, fueling it with used oil, butane gas and electricity. But now they are exploring the use of human gas, yes that’s right – it sounds disgusting, smells disgusting, but what a wonderful source of energy!

Pig for poo

Pig for poo

Apart from the excrement from pigs, chickens, horses, donkeys, ostriches, ducks, and geese

human wastes are collected … in these loos designed to keep you intrigued…

Loo seat

Loo seat

and seated for long enough to be ‘productive’.

poo bus

poo bus

The wastes (no, not the human ones) are transported to the biogas production site in a specially designedloooong-armed wheelbarrow

Shit stirrer

Shit stirrer

where it is poured into this big pot, where it is stirred (not shaken) by a professional shit stirrer.

Fermentation

Fermentation

Then it flows to the fermentation pit to digest….

Fermentation  system

Fermentation system

Notice how the toilets are being constructed at the top end of the system. This allows the poo to flow directly into the first tank .. it flows by gravity to the fermentation tank and then a settling tank before the sludge flows out and down a drain into another holding tank out of the picture.

The gas is piped to the household kitchen and the glass art workshops,

while the waste sludge is extracted and used on the gardens, i.e. total recycling!

In addition the Kitengela Glass factory creates an odd assortment of jobs from artists to poop stirrers, farmers and  biogas producers… for more information read about Kitengela here.

Amazing isn’t it – The first example of Art from Fart

7 comments » Write a comment

  1. Thanks for the comments and Hi Alison. I am going back to get more details on this project next week and will try to get the details for you… they also do home made windmills and briquettes. As a result of this post we’ve been approached by BBC to do a radio piece – watch this space! :) By the way you might want to connect with my sister who is doing some interesting things with helping communities market organic products and get fair prices… she’s also starting a foundation to facilitate school uniform swaps (how many of us end up chucking out uniforms that someone else could use… how many kids are sent home for lack of uniforms?

  2. OMG! How does Nani achieve all of these really beautiful things all the time? :-) Already love the design.

    Some technical questions though:
    1. is this some sort of flush toilet, e.g. will users have to use water from a bucket to flush (it somehow requires a transport medium to flush down to the mixer)?
    2. how long is it kept in the mixer? am asking because it looks pretty full

    So it’s:
    faeces & urine & water => mixer => biodigester
    kitchen waste, animal dung => mixer => biodigester ?

    Oh, and it would be quite interesting to see what other kind of concepts they are using for other waste fractions. Incinerating all of it to heat up the glass oven?

    Thx!

  3. Hi Jke, its not a flush toilet – it’s a long drop.. ..Kitchen wastes go into the animals – teh excrement then goes into the mixer. They are also using house and office paper wastes to make briquettes to run the house oven, and old engine oil to run one kiln.

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