FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Loyola University Chicago to Ban Bottled Water Sales on Campus
Year-Long Campaign Leads to End of Wasteful Water Bottles
CHICAGO, May 3, 2012 –Following a year-long educational campaign, “UnCap Loyola,” on March 28, 2012, a majority of students passed a referendum to phase out bottled water on Loyola University Chicago’s campuses. The campaign, led by the Student Environmental Alliance (SEA), in partnership with Loyola’s Unified Student Government Association (USGA), was focused on the growing concern on campus about local water privatization and fair access to water on a global level.
“We consider the sale of bottled water on campus in conflict with the Jesuit tradition and Loyola’s mission ‘to be in service of humanity through learning, justice and faith.’ We feel that safe and accessible water is a fundamental human right and must not be handled in ways that put profits over people,” SEA and USGA representatives said in a joint statement.
Following a colloquium on the topic of water, which was conducted by the Center for Urban Environmental Research and Policy (CUERP) in April 2010, and a week-long series of events on campus, the students felt the time was right to take action regarding the social justice, environmental, and economical implications associated with bottled water. The year-long, “UnCap Loyola” campaign included film showings, public service announcements, personal pledges, and distribution of reusable water bottles.
In addition, Loyola’s administration has supported water conservation efforts on campus by distributing reusable bottles to students and guests, installing 35 bottle refill stations at key locations around the Lake Shore and Water Tower campuses and implementing water conservation projects in buildings and on the grounds of Loyola.
“It is exciting to see the leadership and commitment from the students on the topic of water,” said Aaron Durnbaugh, director of sustainability at Loyola. “With our location on the banks of the greatest fresh water resource in the world, our drinking water could be taken for granted, but the students recognize its value and our responsibility to protect and preserve this resource for all.”
The next steps in this campaign to phase out bottled water on campus will be the removal of bottled water from dining service venues and catering starting fall 2012. Bottled water will then be removed from vending and other contracts in 2013.
Loyola is committed to the continued education of the Loyola community on water supply and conservation topics in the protection of Lake Michigan and regional water resources through faculty and student research and coursework.
About Loyola University Chicago
Founded in 1870, Loyola University Chicago is the nation’s largest Jesuit, Catholic university, with more than 16,000 students. Nearly 10,000 undergraduates hailing from all 50 states and 82 countries call Loyola home. The University has four campuses: three in the greater Chicago area and one in Rome, Italy, as well as a presence in Beijing and an academic center in Saigon-Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The University’s 10 schools and colleges include arts and sciences, business administration, communication, continuing and professional studies, education, graduate studies, law, medicine, nursing, and social work. Consistently ranked a top national university by U.S.News & World Report, Loyola is also among a select group of universities recognized for community service and engagement by prestigious national organizations like the Carnegie Foundation and the Corporation for National and Community Service. To learn more about Loyola, visit LUC.edu, “like” us at Facebook.com/LoyolaChicago, or follow us on Twitter via @LoyolaChicago.