Problem Solver - August 2012
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Find an Eco-Friendly Restroom Solution

More and more parks, campgrounds and other facilities that celebrate the great outdoors are looking for ways to provide fun and comfort for visitors in an environmentally friendly way. Going green creates less pollution and can simultaneously save resources as you use less energy and resources. You can find restroom options that will help you in your green mission.

Q: We're looking for an eco-friendly choice for our restrooms. What should we consider?

A: Save water by eliminating flush toilets. A restroom structure with a vault evaporator does not need running water, and can reduce vault waste, reducing the number of annual pump-outs, while providing an odor-free facility. These types of restrooms work well at any location, and can be found in some of the most remote areas of the country.

The facility can operate on standard AC or solar DC power. And, if you want to provide running water for sinks and drinking fountains, this can be done as well.

Q: Are there other materials we should consider in our effort to green up our restrooms?

A: In addition to choosing a vault evaporator, you should look at how the finishes used in the structure itself can help make it greener. Many green roofing materials are available, for example, including Energy Star roofing. Metal roofing can be found that incorporates recycled material and is itself completely recyclable.

On the inside of your restroom structures, you'll want to go with durable finishes and amenities. The walls should be seamless and vandal-resistant. Be sure to look for a facility that is easy to clean, and resistant to moisture and a corrosive environment.

Q: We want to provide lighting for our restroom facility, so patrons will be comfortable using it when it's dark. Are there greener lighting options?

A: If you want to take your green message one step further, look to solar electric, which can be used for lighting and ventilation, along with other low-voltage equipment. LED technology can reduce the amount of power needed to light a building and lasts longer than fluorescent bulbs.


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