Published: Monday, April 30, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
Water is one of the world’s most precious and most abused resources most abused resources. Its consumption and distribution bring about serious environmental and ethical consequences. Designer water imported from abroad deprives the poorest communities of a basic necessity, while the absurd use of plastic bottles wastes energy and increases oil production. The Boston College community is perhaps one of the worst offenders in this area.
Several years ago the University set out to ban the sale of plastic water bottles on campus. Despite the environmental, financial, and ethical benefits associated with this action, the student body was outraged. A number of students began pressing BC to bring bottled water back, and specifically they called for Smartwater. Since that time, consumption of bottled water on campus has been increasing. Last year, BC sold approximately 122,000 bottles of Smartwater.
The simple fact is, that bottled water is not better than tap water in any meaningful way. In an effort to encourage students to be environmentally friendly, Dining Services has installed filtered water spigots in all of its dining halls. Despite this, BC students continue to purchase Smartwater.
Even those who choose to use the filtered water spigots, however, do not do so in an environmentally sound way. Rather than filling up a reusable bottle, most students will use a paper cup which will be thrown away at the conclusion of a meal.
We, concerned students of environmental ethics, are calling on all members of the student body to stop consuming water in a socially and environmentally harmful way. We want to encourage everyone to choose a reusable container over a paper cup and to eliminate waste by not purchasing bottles of water.