Sandwiched between the football stadium and tennis courts at San Pasqual High School, a scientist with the J. Craig Venter Institute is working on a high-tech project that could one day provide millions of people with a way to sanitize polluted water in countries that can’t afford costly waste-water treatment systems.
The project starts with pig waste — tons of it — produced by 21 swine kept in chain-link pens at the Escondido campus. The pigs pack on a few pounds a day, and produce several pounds of waste daily that is collected in the name of research. Water polluted with the waste is cleaned and purified, primarily with technology that has been around for decades.
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