What is silver, mounted on a wall, and dispenses cold, filtered water into reusable bottles?
The answer: newly installed campus water bottle filling stations!
To promote water sustainability and to reduce the number of plastic water bottles going into landfills, Facilities Management has initiated a pilot project that will install water bottle refill stations in classroom buildings across campus.
There are two pilot locations: one in Science and Research 1 and the second on the first floor of Cullen Engineering D-3, with plans to expand the program to approximately 40 additional facilities.
The water bottle filling stations will replace the standard water fountains and will add the benefits of incorporating a second water filter to the water supply as well as a station use counter. This counter will track how many times the filling station is used, which will give an indication of how many water bottles are not being tossed into the trash.
After being installed two weeks ago, the filling station counters indicate that 2,174 fills have occurred. Spread out over the course of a year at the present rate, just these two locations alone could account for an estimated 56,524 water bottles being saved from the landfill. Plans for the continuation and expansion of this program are being developed within Facilities Management, including mapping the locations, type of units to be installed, and material and labor costs.
Now that the pilot program has been launched, Facilities Management would like to ask for help in naming these filling stations. The naming competition is open to all students, faculty and staff. The selected name will be publicized with a sign above each of the water filling stations. The sign shown in the photo over the water filling station is a representation only of what the sign will look like. The person who submits the winning name will receive a gift card in addition to knowing they have helped further sustainability efforts on campus. The deadline to submit a name is Friday, April 19 and there is no limit to the number of different names that can be submitted by any one individual.
The winner will be notified and the new name will be announced in a campus news release. To submit a name for the competition, send an email to James Ballowe, jballowe@central.UH.EDU, Subject Line: NAME CONTEST – WATER BOTTLE FILLING STATION.
About the University of Houston
The University of Houston is a comprehensive national research institution serving the globally competitive Houston and Gulf Coast Region by providing world-class faculty, experiential learning and strategic industry partnerships. UH serves more than 40,700 students in the nation’s fourth-largest city, located in the most ethnically and culturally diverse region of the country.