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News Link • Biology, Botany and Zoology

Eau de toilette: Bill Gates pays to turn sewage into drinking water


The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has won worldwide respect for battling disease and starvation in the developing world. But their latest venture – cheaply recycling sewage into drinking water and fuel – may prove more controversial.

­The charity foundation – which has a treasure chest of more than $30 billion – has just given $100,000 to British researchers who believe nanotechnology can extract clean water from human waste. And use the waste itself to produce easy-to-use energy.

Dr. Sarah Haigh, who leads a research team from three top British universities, beat 2000 other competitors with the ingenious proposal, and will receive another million dollars next year if it actually works.

Upon hearing the news Haigh said, “I get a lot of comments about the research I do. I don’t mind people making jokes as long as they’re clean ones.”

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