Thursday, April 24, 2014
Home » Opinion » Columns » RUTH: The water works

RUTH: The water works

I’m still recovering from the terror of my statistics class from sophomore year, but as much as I hate to admit it— I am a statistic. Well, we all are.

I’m starting to pay more attention to the little things I do on a daily basis because, lets face it, everyone has their morning routine and all hell breaks loose if that routine ever deviates from the mean.

Every morning the inviting drone of the commuter rail and the glorious Mass Pike traffic beckons my name. Afterwards, I roll out of bed and prepare myself for the unpredictable weather that Boston has to offer. After incorrectly choosing an outfit that makes me feel like I’ve stepped into either the Sahara or Siberia, I march onward to indulge in my usual eggs and ketchup breakfast at Warren Towers.

I stroll into the Stone Science Building after my hearty meal, and turn the corner to fill my water bottle at the Elkay EZH2O filling station. I read on the electronic screen, “helped eliminate waste from 15,818 disposable bottles,” and put my water bottle against the motion activated sensor. Every morning, I watch the number increase. Last semester, I added this step to my daily routine to make my life choices more environmentally sustainable.

But like I said before, aren’t people supposed to hate change? Not when it saves me money. Not when it’s a small way to save our planet. And for every time I use this refilling station, I’m reducing the number of plastic water bottles purchased from greedy companies that charge innocuous citizens the right to use a free commodity. Tap water is more highly regulated than bottled water, has a considerably smaller carbon footprint and is free.

According to National Geographic, for every six water bottles that we use, only one of them completes the perilous journey to the recycling bin. This statistic can be reduced drastically by the use of reusable water containers and of course, taking full advantage of the conveniently located filling stations located in nearly every building on campus.

Why would people purchase a water bottle that has been shipped thousands of miles to their consumers when you have a machine right before your eyes that is bursting at the seams to fulfill your water needs? People love instant gratification. And this is even more instant than walking to City Convenience and purchasing a FIJI water bottle.

So that’s how I became a statistic — number 15,819. I’m not going to dance around like I’m in Les Miserables and belt out my number at the top of my lungs for the entire world to hear (although 24,601 would’ve been much more impressive). I’m putting it out there as a challenge.

The only requirement of making a difference is drinking water. And come on, it’s not like it’s sulfuric acid pouring out of the machines — it’s clean, filtered water, equipped to quench your voracious thirst. I made a small change in my daily routine to work towards more sustainable future and I contest you to do the same.

 

Jennifer Ruth is a CAS junior. She can be reached at jennifervruth@gmail.com

Leave a Reply