Mechelen launches country’s first ecological urinal


Tired of fighting public urination, the city of Mechelen has placed a GreenPee, which turns urine into fertiliser, in one of its most troublesome streets

Recycling your pee

In an ongoing battle against public urination, the city of Mechelen has launched GreenPee, an ecologically friendly urinal that that turns urine into fertiliser. The city placed the structure (pictured) in Minderbroedersgang, where the problem is at its worst.

Public urination is illegal in Flanders, and those who are caught are fined €350. But catching men in the act is, of course, very difficult.

GreenPee, a Dutch product, is itself a large pot for plants, with a urinal on the front. The urine is absorbed by hemp fibres, composted and becomes fertiliser, which will be used on the city’s plants and trees.

The structure is in a test phase, and if it proves successful in cutting down on public urination in the neighbourhood, it will be kept and more ordered. GreenPee costs €3,500. “We’ll use fines paid for public urination to pay for a second one,” city councillor Richard De Vries told Gazet van Antwerpen. “That way, the system pays for itself.”

Photo: Mechelen rolls out the red carpet for GreenPee
©Katleen Vastiau/BELGA