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Exit Strategies

Managing Human Waste in the Wild

Download 2010 (Exit Strategies) presentations via iTunes podcast

We invited top land managers, scientists, entrepreneurs, and wilderness participants from around the globe to discuss and formulate strategies for managing human waste in remote areas. The Exit Strategies conference included general/plenary sessions, poster presentations, field-proven techniques and opportunities for focused problem solving. The conference sparked important conversations, explored innovative ideas, and participants are developing effective solutions for many problem areas. Attendance included 120 participants representing 12 countries.

Visit the Supplementary Information Page for information on conference speakers and links to other resources.

Stay In Touch

To keep in touch with the most current systems, issues and solutions, you are welcomed to join our Google Group; "Managing Human Waste in the Wild"

Conference Benefits

Knowledge: Share global expertise and assemble a working online database of the best practices for managing human waste in remote and alpine environments.

Case Studies: Publicize various case-studies that illustrate the complexities of, and potential solutions for, managing human waste in wilderness settings.

Connection: To provide links across the globe between the various entities critical to human waste management in wilderness settings.

Action: Generate actionable ideas and practical toolkits for managing human waste that can be disseminated to the broader public.

"Human waste and how we deal with it in the outdoors is a significant issue and perhaps one of the most significant issues we grapple with at Leave No Trace. Improper disposal of human waste can drastically impact water sources, it can spread disease and it can be a substantial aesthetic and social impact. With more and more people enjoying the outdoors, whether they're on a day hike, an overnight camping trip or a month long expedition, we have to collectively work together to find realistic, effective and palatable solutions to this growing problem. This conference is a major step in the right direction towards solving the human waste dilemma." 
Ben Lawhon, Education Director, Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics, Boulder, CO.

"As the world seems to be getting smaller, with more and more people setting out to explore remote natural areas, it is timely that we are bringing managers together to share common experiences & solutions for dealing with increasing challenge of ......'what do you do with the human waste?' As the leader for Wilderness Stewardship in the US National Parks, I look forward to creating a new standard for our visitors. No longer will it be the sole responsibility of the land managers to solve the human waste problem. Today's solution will be a combination of new technology, visitor responsibility, and manager's assistance." 
Garry Oye, Chief of Wilderness Stewardship, National Park Service, Washington, D.C.

"Bringing together experts from around the world to this conference will not only benefit the National Parks but will be a benefit to many agencies. Again, our program applauds and supports your efforts in putting this conference together." 

CAPT John Leffel, REHS, MPH, Public Health Consultant, US Public Health Service

"Human waste is becoming a severe problem at many popular areas around the world where we climb and trek. This issue is especially difficult to manage in high mountain areas where climbers or trekkers are camped on glacial ice. The technology for managing these waste volumes in a sustainable and maintainable manner is still evolving. This conference will be a good opportunity for land managers, mountaineering and trekking tour operators and guides, international climbing and trekking permit agencies, and individuals to learn about the latest research and practical methods for managing human waste in the alpine environments." 
Steve Swenson, President, American Alpine Club

Currently Soliciting Support, Sponsors and Effective Solutions for continueing grass roots support and educational opportunities for "Managing Human Waste in the Wild"

As a government agency, non profit, business or private individual wishing to support Managing Human Waste in the Wild, we hope you can provide financial support for a continuing grants program and educational networking. For questions, please contact: Roger Robinson Roger Robinson.