College students at PSU now learn more than just anthropology and trigonometry; they’re also learning how to “ditch bottled water.”
Water coolers dubbed as “Hydration Stations” have been set up across campus to make it easy for students to refill reusable water canisters. 11 stations have been built and 10 more will soon be constructed, thanks to a grant through the Institute for Sustainable Solutions. So far, just one station has prevented 38,000 plastic water bottles from being produced and soon landfilled. There’s even an easy “refill map” to find your nearest tap.
Portland State’s student campaign is part of a national Take Back the Tap initiative led by Food and Water Watch. Jacob Sherman, a Take Back the Tap student leader, says“When people realize drinking tap water is cheaper, healthier, and more sustainable, they stop buying bottled water anyway.”
Portland State students from the Environmental Club have put together an informative video that really gets at some of the core issues behind why some people prefer bottled water over tap water. Club leader, Andy Eiden says “It’s a psychological thing. They’ve done a good job of getting our psyches attached to the idea that bottled water is a good product, it tastes good, because you see people on TV enjoying this and you identify. That’s one of our bigger barriers.”
As news since this video was produced, the school president has set up a Sustainable Drinking Water Task Force and PSU’s student government has restricted the use of student fees to purchase bottled water.
Plus, if you’ll notice, there’s an oldie-but-goody “I only drink TAP WATER” decal on her stainless steel bottle.
Do you consume 160 plastic water bottles per year?
Or do you share your love of tap water with friends and family?
Senior Community Outreach and Information Representative