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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Bottles a focus for UA group

Annie Marum
Photo Illustration by Annie Marum/ Daily Wildcat

More than a thousand plastic water bottles are purchased on campus every day, and countless more are discarded. One UA group is asking students to stop and think before they throw their bottles in the trash.

According to a study done last year by Students for Sustainability, approximately 1,008 water bottles are bought on campus every day. Between 63 and 95 bags of water bottles are collected after each home football game by the organization, and 1,050 water bottles were collected after the game against Northern Arizona University on Sept. 3 alone.

Natalie Lucas, the executive program director of Students for Sustainability, said the group promotes recycling and reduction of waste through various projects. The group wants to make students think more about how many water bottles they buy and what they do when they are finished with them.

She said the group is trying to post more signs around campus to advertise that people should put their used water bottles in the recycling bin, rather than in the trash. Group members are also trying to implement classes to educate students on why reduction of use and recycling are so important.

“I feel like they (the UA) do a lot to make it convenient for everybody but at the same time it’s not going to be that successful if there is not a change in people’s attitudes about it,” said Nick Ecker, a pre-computer science freshman.

The UA is also getting creative about how to get students naturally recycling more.

Joe Abraham, the director of the Office of Sustainability, said the university is re-evaluating recycling bin placement to maximize how often recycle bins are used. He said the UA hopes that placing them in more convenient locations and changing the way the bins look will give students a better selection of choices of where to discard used water bottles.

Biochemistry freshman Robert Lopez lamented the fact that some places on campus don’t allow students to recycle easily.
“There is a lot of places where there aren’t enough recycling bins and it’s kind of frustrating,” he said.

Lucas added that the group is also in the process of promoting the reduction of waste by implementing water bottle refill stations around campus.

Ashley Ross, a political science junior, said that she buys about two bottles a day, but she saves them and throws them in the recycling when she gets home.

Greg Weinstein, a creative writing junior, said he buys one to two water bottles on campus daily to stay hydrated.

“Guilty enough,” he said, “I probably throw them in the trash.”

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