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  • CHIENG: Bill Gates: he's rich, he's brilliant,

  • and apparently, he's out of his mind.

  • This is a container of human feces.

  • CHIENG: Why is one of the richest men in the world

  • carrying a jar of his own shit?

  • I went to Seattle to find out

  • what's wrong with Bill Gates.

  • Mr. Gates, it's a huge honor to meet you.

  • Just a quick question.

  • What the (bleep) is wrong with you?

  • I mean, are you okay?

  • Yeah, I'm great. Love what I'm doing.

  • Okay, so why are you carrying around your own poop in a jar?

  • I did, uh, have a beaker of human feces

  • when I was explaining why we need a reinvented toilet.

  • You don't need to reinvent a toilet.

  • We shit in it, then we push a button,

  • then the shit disappears. It's perfect.

  • Well, toilets are something we take for granted,

  • but billions of people don't have them.

  • Even in these growing cities in poor countries,

  • they can't afford to build sewers,

  • and that causes diseases.

  • And so we have to come up with a very different way

  • of taking care of that waste.

  • CHIENG: And because so much of the world

  • lacks a sanitary place to poo, Bill launched

  • the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge.

  • It funds scientists to redesign toilets

  • that don't need a sewer system.

  • We put several hundred million into this

  • -to show that it can be done. -Wait, sorry, hang on.

  • You put several hundred million dollars into toilets.

  • Giving it away, you bet.

  • CHIENG: Oh, my God. Is Bill Gates

  • literally flushing his fortune down the toilet?

  • To find out, I flew all the way to University of South Florida,

  • where Professor Daniel Yeh and his team

  • are using Gates' funding

  • to make some sort of magic poop box.

  • So, what we have here, essentially,

  • is a miniature version of the wastewater treatment plant,

  • and we can put this anywhere in the world.

  • In the bioreactor, we have microorganisms.

  • They, uh, eat the poop and turn it into clean water.

  • Okay, why do the microbes eat the poop?

  • The microbes eat the poop because that's what they do.

  • Did you ask them if they want to do that?

  • Well, uh...

  • Yeah, why don't you give them a muffin or something?

  • Maybe they'd like a muffin.

  • Uh, okay, I'll make a note of that,

  • but, um, when you show them the poop, they love it.

  • Despite his crazy talk, there's just something about this guy.

  • I don't know what it is, but I trust him.

  • So I decided to give his machine a try.

  • ♪ ♪

  • (exhales)

  • So, normally, uh, we would have a block of toilets, right,

  • and then the waste from the toilets would come here,

  • it'll go into the machine, and then, using solar power,

  • we can turn the poopy water into clean water.

  • -So, you stand by this? -Yeah.

  • Well, prove it.

  • Okay.

  • ♪ ♪

  • -Did it work? -Yeah.

  • Well, how many times did it not work

  • and you ended up drinking your own shit?

  • Well, it's worked so well that,

  • um, we're actually working with NASA.

  • Astronauts have to poop,

  • and we can turn that poop into clean water

  • and nutrients and even energy.

  • -Wait, did you say "energy"? -Yeah.

  • The, uh, microbes in the bioreactor make methane.

  • That's the same stuff that's in natural gas,

  • and you can burn it.

  • Bill Gates, you sneaky bastard.

  • You just found a filthy little back door

  • into the most profitable industry in the world,

  • energy.

  • You didn't say anything about energy!

  • Yeah! One way to make it cheap

  • to process the sewage is to sell these outputs.

  • You should open with that next time.

  • Don't open with the "saving the world, kids, and disease" thing.

  • Open with, "Yo, we're making toilets

  • that can convert shit into energy."

  • We need to make these toilets as expensive as possible,

  • 'cause, based on my research,

  • everyone poops.

  • I mean, everybody.

  • Well, unless we make them super cheap,

  • they're not gonna get out to the poorest

  • who need them the most.

  • Look, I know you've made your money.

  • Some of us here are still trying to win this game.

  • Well, if you have an idea, let us know.

  • I've got nothing but ideas for this.

  • -Okay. -So, this is an iPad.

  • -(chuckles) -Great device.

  • -I love using it. Um, so, -Hey, hey, yeah.

  • what's the worst seat on a plane? Next to the toilet.

  • But what if every seat was a toilet?

  • Poop-powered planes.

  • To keep the plane in motion,

  • we have to keep shitting.

  • High pressure, I know,

  • but it gives the airlines incentive to feed us.

  • I-I'm not sure the numbers work.

  • How 'bout this? It's a toilet that you shit in,

  • and it powers a cannon that shoots the shit out

  • to my neighbor's house.

  • (laughing)

  • Why are you laughing?

  • That's not legal.

  • Listen, man, I'm up here just trying to come up

  • with ideas here to save the world, okay?

  • -What are you doing? -Um...

  • that's what I'm doing.

  • No, that's what I'm doing.

  • I'm here giving you ideas.

  • All you're doing is shitting on them.

  • Well, I don't think...

  • those ideas are-are ready yet.

  • But we do have a lot of ideas

  • that are in the field,

  • uh, being tested in Durban.

  • Trying to cover the 30% of their residents

  • that don't have, uh, great sewage processing.

  • We are gonna completely change the future.

  • Everybody's gonna have a great toilet.

  • Well, here's to everyone having a great toilet.

  • Cheers.

  • -(gulps, sighs) -(sighs)

  • Not bad.

  • Now guess where that came from.

  • You just drank my shit.

  • How's it taste?

  • That's a very successful process there.

  • It-it tasted like normal water.

  • Good job.

  • CHIENG: Thank you, Bill.

  • There's more where that came from.

  • (laughter)

CHIENG: Bill Gates: he's rich, he's brilliant,

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Bill Gates Wants to Reinvent the Toilet | The Daily Show

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    Man Chi posted on 2020/04/04
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