Take Back the Tap - Phase 1-4

Colored water bottles: pink, blue, yellow, green, brown

Take Back the Tap - Phase 1-4

Spring 2013 + Spring 2014 + Spring 2015 + Spring 2016 - Water + Environmental Justice + Transportation + Zero Waste
Vanessa Ferona, Hillary Fuller, Alex Sinchak, Sean Svette, and Sara Santa Cruz

Project Overview

Our goal is to promote and instill the importance of Take Back the Tap as well as create awareness of the Hydration Stations around campus to Freshman students. The main focus will be Freshman seminars, where we will give each participant a top quality reusable water bottle and travel mug after a brief introduction to sustainability and ways to get involved.

According to the MSLK Watershed Initiative, every second 1500 water bottles are purchased in the United States and 80% of these go to landfills.  Throughout the country water bottle sales continue to grow. According to the International Bottled Water Association, in 2012 the bottled water industry saw a 6.7% increase in sales. American’s insatiable appetite for bottled water has resulted in a highly energy intensive system that uses 17 million barrels of oils each year, as calculated by the Pacific Institute. The goal of the Take Back the Tap campaign is to educate incoming freshman (primarily) and other students about the negative environmental consequences of purchasing bottled water. This education program is a much needed transition point that parallels the 2011 UCCS referendum which banned the sale of bottled water on campus in August 2014. For the last two years, TBTT has been executed through freshman seminar, which has been effective in establishing a campus culture of reusable water bottles. This should be replicated Fall 2015 where the curriculum allows.