Students quench thirst with newly installed bottle filling stations
One small step for the environment, one giant leap for mankind
Traditional water fountains can be found in many places. From museums to schools, water fountains have been around since Mesopotamia. A once amazing tool for people, water fountains have now become distasteful from the metallic after taste they leave the user.
Though not a very new concept, bottle filling stations were first introduced in 1922, and have just in the past few years become an important and more common part of public water.
These bottle filling stations serve as a stepping stone to a better world through sustainability and cleanliness.
Linganore High School recently took the initiative to incorporate two new bottle filling stations into the school during the 2020-2021 school year. Along with those two stations, Linganore will be installing five more bottle filling stations, located at the C side (upstairs and downstairs) and then three more over the summer (Main Street and Cafeteria).
“By having water bottle stations in schools it provides a more sanitary place to fill up a water bottle and reduce the spread of germs. Bottle filling stations will reduce the amount of wasted bottles and the updated filters also provide a better taste to the water,” said lead custodian Mike Bowles.
The water bottle stations are from the company, Elkay. These two stations cost Linganore around $1,150 for both of the stations.
Elkay provides buyers with a couple ways for the bottle filling stations to be established. They offer on the wall, in the wall, and outdoor models of these stations. Along with the stand alone fountains, Elkay can retrofit fillers to the top of already existing traditional Elkay water fountains. That is the case for Linganore.
Although these stations provide more sustainability and water cleanliness, the taste is still up for debate.
Class of 2022 member Jamie Donohue said, “I recently used the new bottle filling station and was kind of disappointed. I don’t usually use the water fountains because I don’t think they taste very good, so I had high hopes for the stations. Sadly, they didn’t live up to my expectations because it tasted about the same as the water fountains.”
Some think it is much better than the traditional water fountains.
Principal’s secretary Kathryn Rich said, “No more metal tasting water here at LHS!!! So far, with the station located downstairs in the A wing, the Lancers have saved over 70 plastic bottles of water. I know you’re probably skeptical because the water has tasted so much like metal in the past. Ted Mosteler [School Resource Officer] and I can testify that the filtered water . . . tastes great.”
What do you think about the water from the new stations?
Why are these stations good?
The Elkay website has specific information about the filling stations. “Elkay filtered ezH2O bottle filling stations reduce lead and other harmful contaminants, putting cleaner, healthier water within everyone’s reach. This innovative and award-winning product line upholds our commitment to delivering clean water and sustainable design. It provides a rapid fill of drinking water to quench thirst and minimize plastic bottle waste in the environment.”
One of the biggest problems that we face today is plastic waste. Plastic bottles is a huge plastic waste source, with humans on average purchasing 1,000,000 bottles per minute and around 23% get recycled. When plastic bottles get thrown away and sent to landfills, they don’t just disappear. They sit there and decompose over a long course of 450 million years. So, these stations offer people a place to reuse plastic bottles instead of throwing them out and getting a new one. The stations increase the likely hood of someone refilling the bottle because the water is filtered very thoroughly, unlike the traditional fountain.
Not only do these stations provide an environmental benefit, but they offer so many health and cleanliness benefits.
- Clean water through the internalized filter that has been certified by the NSF to help put cleaner, healthier water within reach by reducing lead and other contaminants.
- Hands-free operation, minimizing the hand contact and germ spreading through sensors that detect when water bottles are placed to be filled.
- A true drain that provides a more efficient drainage and elimination of standing water.
- Key plastic components that contain a special ion antimicrobial protection that inhibits the growth of mildew and mold.
Hopefully we continue the expansion of these stations to provide our environment with as much support as possible.