Group attempts to remove Dasani water bottles
THE SANTA CLARA
October 17, 2013
The Think Outside the Bottle campaign, a student-run organization, is focusing its efforts on banning plastic water bottles from campus once and for all.
After successfully lobbying Dining Services to cease the production of Santa Clara brand water bottles, the Think Outside the Bottle campaign is now attempting to ban the sale of Dasani water bottles on campus.
The campaign garnered 800 signatures in support of halting water bottle production over the course of four months throughout the previous academic year. This year, the campaign is attempting to obtain a total of 1,500 signatures by the end of fall quarter.
One of the main goals of the campaign is to educate students about the environmental impact associated with water bottle production.
According to The Water Project, water bottles take 1,000 years to biodegrade and produce toxic fumes when they are incinerated. In addition, production of water bottles wastes water itself since it takes three liters of water to produce one liter of bottled water.
Polyethylene terephthalate plastic, the material water bottles are made out of, is not healthy to consume a liquid out of. There are also social issues that surround bottled water production in marginalized communities.
“The bottom line is that water is a human right and it shouldn’t be a commodity to be bought and sold,” said senior Kelsey Baker, one of the campaign organizers.
The challenge of removing Dasani water bottles is much more formidable this time around because campus is already contracted with Coca-Cola, and Dasani water bottles are sold as a part of that contract.
“(Santa Clara) is not obligated specifically to sell Dasani water bottles, they are obligated to sell a certain volume and have a certain amount of shelf space for Coca-Cola products,” said sophomore Sean Reilly, who is responsible for social media for the campaign.
The campaign’s aim is to try and persuade dining services to replace the Dasani water bottle shelf space with another Coca-Cola food product.
According to Baker, the campaign is suggesting that dining services install more filtered water stations. The campaign is also tracking the sales of Dasani water bottles on campus, and they hope that sales will decline as they raise awareness among the student body.
According to Baker the administration has been very supportive, willing to negotiate with Think Outside the Bottle Campaign and open to the idea of sustainability.
“Bon Appetit is very progressive in terms of dining services in considering sustainability,” said Baker. “But they are a business and one of their main concerns is profit. They are also concerned about taking away what people are going to buy, which is why we are targeting students and teaching them why they should not purchase plastic water bottles.”
Contact Sophie Mattson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (408) 554-4852.