St Aloysius College – A throw-away bottle “free” zone
In response to a call for action on Eco-justice from the Sisters of Mercy, the St Aloysius College Social justice group decided to take local and meaningful action.
A staff presentation on Sustainability in Schools provoked the Social Justice Group coordinators to explore what could be done about the widespread consumption of single use plastic water bottles amongst our students. Choosing to buy and drink water is a healthier option for students, but it isn’t a healthier option for the planet. About 2.5 million tonnes of plastic bottles and jars are thrown away each year. Of the 60 billion single-use drink containers purchased each year about 75% are thrown out directly after the liquid is consumed. Plastic bottles are one of the most common items of litter in waterways and on beaches. The manufacture and distribution of plastic drinking containers use fossil fuels and none of this is necessary because our water supply is clean, healthy and costs a tiny fraction of the cost of purchased water in plastic bottles.
In a direct challenge to the “use it and throw it” mind-set, students decided that if all students had reusable college branded water bottle, there would be no reason to buy bottled drinks. To fund the plan, a grant application was made to City West Water, and they agreed that it was worth funding. The substantial grant from City West Water will go towards purchasing logo-printed reusable aluminium bottles that will be used for years and years with no risk of plastic degradation. To fill the bottles existing drinking fountains will be modified, by Street Furniture.