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Filtered water stations installed on campus
Mearl Colaco / Intern
New filtered water fill stations are being installed on campus to offer students, faculty and staff clean, safe drinking water for reusable bottles.
The stations will be installed by the UNT Faculties Department and funded by a grant from the We Mean Green Fund. Fourteen of the stations are already installed, and six more will debut at Wooten Hall, Chilton Hall, the General Academic Building, the Language Building, the Life Sciences Complex and Music Building.
“One of the benefits of this water filter station is it takes out everything from the water that you don’t want in your body, from chlorine, fluoride to minerals and other contaminants,” zone maintenance manager Rick McCormick said. “And one of the greatest benefits is it will eliminate the use of plastic bottles and will be a lot cheaper.”
Water filter stations were first installed on campus about four years ago and were funded by UNT Facilities. The We Mean Green Fund Committee, recognizing the positive environmental contribution the stations had, approved a grant in the spring to keep the stations running. The We Mean Green fund is supported by a $5 per semester student fee.
“We are generating a lot of waste from plastic bottles. Plus anything that goes into plastic is not really healthy,” McCormick said. “Hence this project is undertaken to try to reduce our carbon footprint and try to clean up our environment. This surely is a good step in the right direction.”
Master’s student Daniel Stevens said the stations helped him save money.
“I don’t have to buy a bottle of water when I’m thirsty,” he said.
Public administration doctoral student Divya Dandu said she carried an empty bottle from home to fill at one of the stations on campus.
“This saves me from carrying weight right from home,” she said.
The facilities department is already at work brainstorming its next green project: alternative parking lot and security lighting on campus.
“This will save a whole lot of energy consumption, by about 60 percent if we can implement this project,” McCormick said. “But this is saving energy through lighting only. We have a lot of energy-consuming equipment around the university, and we’re trying on reducing it as we get along.”
He noted that these green projects could be expensive, but that the long-term benefits were more than worth it.