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Helping the campus, one bottle at a time

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Pierce College could do its part in helping the environment by encouraging students to use reusable bottles on campus to reduce the amount of plastic waste.

There are many ways to promote the use of reusable bottles to students while at school.

There are several reusable bottle refill stations on campus, including in Students Services, Business office and Performing Arts buildings, one near the South Gym and one by the courtyard at Learning/Library Crossroads. It’s a start, but Pierce has 426 acres, and by increasing the stations to cover the entire campus,thousands more plastic bottles could be saved every week.  

Pierce also can help by promoting the already established refill sites on the virtual and physical Campus Map and Directory. Signs about the station could be added at either end of the Mall. 

The stations are free, and the average price for a bottle of water is $1.50, so that means a savings of $7.50 a week.

In January of 2019, Fullerton Community College in Orange County introduced 23 reusable water bottle stations on its campus. In two weeks, the refill stations saved 168,000 plastic water bottles from being used, according to their College President Greg Shulz. 

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, if you walked into a classroom on campus you would likely see several students with reusable bottles, such as Hydro Flasks. Many of those bottles would be decorated with stickers.

The school could offer free Pierce designed stickers to students who bring a reusable bottle as another way to get students to avoid using plastics. Not only would it be a creative way for students to show their school spirit,but it would be an inexpensive way as well.

Another way that the school could influence students to use a reusable bottle is by allowing them to earn a free one as a reward. Students who finish the semester with a good academic standing could be given Pierce designed bottles. 

Even though the campus is not fully reopened, taking these small actions now could help start making a significant difference at Pierce for years to come.