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Netherlands fights 'wild peeing' with hemp-filled public urinals

Aug. 21 (UPI) -- The capital of the Netherlands has installed hemp-filled urinals in public outdoor locations around the city as a means of combating the longtime problem of "wild peeing."

Dutch company Urban Senses installed 12 GreenPee urinals in locations around Amsterdam that were identified by local officials as hotspots for public urination.

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Richard de Vries, inventor of the GreenPee urinals, said the city initially installed four of the urinals in 2018, and they have now added eight more after determining the pilot program was a success.

"The result was there was a 50% reduction in wild peeing," De Vries told CNN of the initial toilet installation. "It was a great success."

The GreenPee urinals resemble planters and are filled with hemp. De Vries said the urinals offer a sustainable alternative to traditional public urinals, as they use less water and create green spaces for bees and other insects. The urinals produce organic fertilizer and water for the plants, the inventor said.

He said the benefits of the GreenPees also include reducing erosion on historic buildings often targeted by public urination and could even save lives, as several young men die each year by falling into canals at night while looking for a place to urinate.

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The city of Amsterdam said officials are considering future research into whether the urinals could be made usable by women.

De Vries said he is hoping to spread the GreenPees to other cities around the world and he is researching technology that would convert human urine into electricity to power lights.

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