Royal Watch News
Prince Willem-Alexander inspects toilets
Aug 16, 2012, 12:01 GMT
The Netherlands' Prince Willem-Alexander has been inspecting new advances in toilet technology.
The royal is Chair of the UN Secretary-General's Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation, and has appeared at the Reinvent the Toilet Fair held by the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation where he was impressed with some of the designs.
He said: 'I do spend a good deal of time advocating for more toilets. So, it is exciting to get a close-up look at all the state-of-the-art toilets here. I know that they can make a big contribution in solving the sanitation crisis.'
The fair showcases results from eight universities, who were awarded grants of approximately $400,000 each to develop a waterless, hygienic toilet that is safe and affordable for people in the developing world.
Prince Willem-Alexander also said access to proper toilets are essential in a world where healthcare is increasingly expensive.
He added: 'Healthcare is becoming prohibitively expensive. Curative healthcare is ten times more expensive than preventive healthcare. By shifting dollars from curative to preventative health, sanitation is extremely cost effective public health intervention.
'These winning toilets are a real achievement and a tremendous advance. They deserve investment and widespread distribution. Carried out with careful attention to context.'
The royal then took a tour of the winning designs with Bill Gates at the Microsoft campus in Seattle.
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