This is a story about wearing down waste, drop by drop.
The old pipes in MACED's building cause an undesirable taste for drinking water. This caused staff to purchase bottled water from a local bottling company in Rockcastle County. But, the recycling bin was overflowing with bottles week after week.
The O-Team wanted to reduce the amount of bottles that were being recycled. Our first attempt was to install water filters on both kitchen facets and give staff re-usable water bottles as a gift and incentive to use less plastic water bottles. The filters helped improve the water's taste but the recycle bin continued to overflow.
We took a staff member's suggestion to start purchasing five-gallon jugs of water from the local bottling company, Climax Water, and placed water glasses near the dispenser. This reduced our plastic bottle use a lot — approximately 110 five-gallon jugs a year means 2,000 plastic bottles are kept out of the recycling stream.
The O-Team also followed up with some other, more subtle changes. We now offer visitors a glass of water and have since moved the bottled water to a less accessible location.
Though some staff still go for a bottle of water as they head out the door, they're more likely now to stop at the water cooler and refill their re-usable containers. Drop by drop, we're changing habits and saving water!