Working With Nature to Clean Water: Dr. John Todd

Episode 131: Dr. John Todd is a pioneer in the field of ecological design. The inventor of the Eco-Machine, John Todd works with nature to heal degraded waste sites often thought irreconcilably damaged. John Todd and his associates have worked on projects on five continents dealing with waterborne waste streams of both domestic sewage and industrial waste.

John believes that there are ways to heal our damaged earth and designs machines that work with nature to reduce the amount of nutrients and pollutants in water and manage and transform them into beneficial forms.

In this episode, John Todd tells us why he travels to the places most people don’t like to go- polluted landfills, contaminated oil fields, and sewage plants. John talks about the first Eco-Machine he designed to mimic the genius of nature and how armed with a bucket and turkey baster, he filled it with life from over a dozen wild environments. When polluted water was poured into the machine, it moved through different tanks on a 10 day journey. The end result? Clean water.

John talks about his project at the Omega Institute where he designed an Eco-Machine that treats up to 52,000 gallons a day of wastewater. The Eco-Machine is located in a beautiful greenhouse that doubles as a classroom, event space and yoga center!

John also talks about his latest project, designing and building a fleet of Ocean Arks. As the Arks travel through the sea or lake, they clean the water, while onboard, students learn about the ocean.

8 Comments on “Working With Nature to Clean Water: Dr. John Todd

  1. It saddens me that projects like these and people like Dr. Todd do not get more publicity and funding. When I think about how many things we take for granted – like clean running water for example, and do nothing to preserve our sources. One pioneer, no matter how idealistic or genius he is, cannot tip the balance of the scales. We need much more communal awareness as a society to address the problem much more effectively. Dr. Todd’s work might be saving hundreds of lives daily in third-world or developing countries in Southeast Asia and Africa – instead, we bicker about Trump and Brexit…

  2. Thank Jill for interviewing Dr Todd, I really admire him. My heart is full with hope after listening him. I’m an Architect in Mexico and I would love to build Eco-machines as part of ecological buildings.

    • Thank you for your comment, Abriseth. I’m so glad that you feel hopeful. John Todd is inspiring and has so much to teach us. I can’t wait to see photos of your ecological buildings and Eco-machines! Did you get plans from Dr. Todd?

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