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Bill Gates is on a '10-year quest' to reinvent the toilet — and he says his work at Microsoft gave him the inspiration to do it

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Thomas Saysongkham
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Bill Gates speaking at an event in Washington, 2014.

Bill Gates wants to reinvent the toilet for over 2 billion people who lack access to clean water.

Bill Gates is on a mission to reinvent the way huge swaths of the world's population go to the bathroom.

Through his foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Gates is funding cheap, waterless toilets, designed to serve poor urban areas in countries that lack consistent access to clean water and sanitation.

More than 2.4 billion people around the world still live in unsanitary conditions, putting them at risk for diseases, according to some estimates.

"We want to reinvent the toilet so it doesn’t need water piped in or out — just a chemical process, so that even Indian cities that will never spend $1 billion can have a toilet as good as a Western one," Gates said in the interview.

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Thomas Saysongkham
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