Make Reusable the Usual

Alyssa MacKinnon

On Friday evening, Nov. 14, Vincent Madar and his small group from the Earth 2100 Common Course joined together with SCOPE to provide students with customizable reusable water bottles.
Students came and decorated bottles in order to promote the environmental motto the students in Carolyn Lagoe’s class created: “Make Reusable the Usual.”

Students decorating their reusable water bottles Thursday night  (Erica Naugle/ Charger Bulletin Photo)
Students decorating their reusable water bottles Thursday night
(Erica Naugle/ Charger Bulletin Photo)

Gabrielle Perez outlined the class saying, “We first learned how to make a campaign. [Now] this is the campaign portion of our class. We originally wanted to ban water bottles on campus.”

Unfortunately, the class lacked the scope to accomplish this goal so they set their eyes on a new goal: reducing the waste at the source. The class wanted to educate and teach students how to reduce the waste they create and take the first steps in the “reduce, reuse, recycle” process.

The class watched a documentary called Tapped, which highlights many of the faults in the water bottle production industry.

“What shocked me the most was how little actually gets recycled,” Madar said. “It’s mind blowing.”

Another student commented that the amount of oil used in making water bottles shocked her; it takes 17 million barrels of oil to make water bottles annually.

After watching the documentary, the students started in larger groups and broke into smaller groups to design projects. One group designed a video, another a fact sheet, another napkin advertisements, and, finally, a group designed a poster for the event.

Jordan Campbell spoke on his group’s project, summarizing their goal: to reduce the number of bottles each person uses so that less recycling is needed in the future. The video goes through the lifecycle of a water bottle—at one point saying that Americans used 50 billion bottles of water last year!

Rachel Spall’s group designed the fact sheet which contains important information about recycling. Their ad is focused entirely on water bottles, with the use of vibrant blues and a unique water bottle logo.

Lisa Zhen was one of the students who designed the napkin holder ads, which will be featured in Bartels from Nov. 17 to the 20.

These small ads contain various facts on how to reduce waste and increase recycling at UNH.

Lagoe promoted the motto in her own way by having students post paper advertisements for the reusable bottle event only in high traffic areas to reduce printing waste. The class even created a Facebook page with the same name of their campaign. Follow them and keep updated with their efforts to make UNH more environmentally friendly!