ST. BENEDICT UNIVERSITY – College Campuses in Minnesota are looking for ways to reduce their economic needs. At the same time, they’re looking for ways to go green, and reduce their environmental impact. Plastics require recycling and take centuries to bio-degrade. Additionally, the processes used to make plastics require toxic chemicals and produce a variety of dangerous by-products. While many plastic items are irreplaceable for day-to-day living, bottled water might be one that could be eliminated.
In a new step towards environmental friendliness and economic resourcefulness, St.Benedict’s University is moving away from bottled water. Instead, the college will provide students with “hydration stations” that allow for the refilling of chilled water for reusable plastic water bottles and canteens. The cost of bottled water on campus is about $22,000.00 per year, an amount of money that could be spent elsewhere, every year. This year, the money saved will go to paying for these “hydration stations,” which provide fresh tap water for students.
The campus has mixed reactions to the new “hydration stations” and the removal of bottled water. Some students are pleased with the installation, finding chilled fresh tap water more appealing than bottled water that has sat on stock shelfs for months. Others disagree. In fact, the Campus Republicans protested against the bottled water reform. However, with the savings and environmental benefits, St. Benedict’s will a model to test the waters for future adopters.