No Toilet, No Showers: California Man Cuts Water Use by 95%


One California man is going well beyond skipping showers to battle the state’s record four-year drought.

According to San Diego ABC affiliate News 10, Ocean Beach resident Rob Greenfield has reduced his water use by more than 95 percent.

“I am living off the grid,” Greenfield told the outlet.

That may be an understatement. Greenfield told ABC he lives in a 5′ x 10′ home in a neighbor’s back lot, where he collects rainwater in drums and relies entirely on that water for his day-to-day needs. Greenfield will, for example, use water to wash his hands, then use that same water to wash his dishes, and then collect that water for use in his garden.

The conservationist claims he uses just two gallons of water per day. For comparison, surrounding San Diego-area residents reportedly use an average of 100 gallons per day.

“That 200 gallons from the last rainstorm will last me about three months,” Greenfield told ABC.

Because he uses so little water, Greenfield does not have a traditional toilet. Instead, he uses a bucket to collect his waste, places leaves on top to mask the smell, and lets it “mature” for a full year for use as compost in his garden.

Greenfield also told News 10 he has not taken a traditional shower in two years, opting instead to bathe in the Pacific Ocean.

Greenfield conceded that people think his way of living is “nuts,” but says he wants to motivate others to do their part to help battle the drought.

“I am testing the boundaries of the human experience,” he told ABC.


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