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BG Falcon Media

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BG Falcon Media

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Going green is more than just a catch phrase

As you’re already aware, environmental sustainability is an extremely hot topic.

With every passing day, more and more pressure is placed on companies, colleges and organizations large and small to actively take steps in reducing their greenhouse emissions and physical waste output.

And with all this talk about ‘going green’ at the University, I’m bewildered by the fact that this school still makes use of cafeteria trays within its dining halls.

Hey college: want to save significant amounts of money within your dining halls and subsequently become ‘greener?’ Then get rid of those waste-conducive cafeteria trays.

It’s rather simple. No more trays within the University’s dining halls means the following: no more water and electricity used to wash the trays, no manpower needed to go about washing the trays and substantially less food gone to waste.

Anyone who’s been in one of our dining halls knows how much food goes to waste: a lot. Day after day, I witness students dumping half-consumed meals into the disposal bins, often by means of tilting a cafeteria tray at a 45-degree angle.

One thing I’ve noticed is that students tend to be noticeably less wasteful with their foodstuffs when trays are absent. Without a spacious and portable food storage plane, the only space available to contain food is one’s hands.

Generally, this means a cafeteria-goer will purchase less food due to reduced storage space, meaning less food to potentially end up in a trash barrel somewhere.

I, for one, admittedly do indeed tend to pick up more food when I’m using a tray.

Which is why I rarely use one anymore.

I see not why this longtime cafeteria mainstay remains in our dining halls on campus.

Only a small fraction of students in the Union actually make use of the dining trays, and it seems like a phenomenal waste of resources to keep up a tray cleaning operation just to serve this minority.

Similarly, I see limited use of cafeteria trays within the other dining halls on campus. I’m not saying they go unused, but I do mean to make it known that relatively few of these trays are actually used by student diners.

I find it hard to agree with all the sickeningly hip ‘go green’ propaganda all over campus when the University still implements fundamentally unsound environmental policies in certain areas.

Need a receipt? No? Okay, I’ll give you one anyway. Make sure you throw it away soon, because all your transactions can be traced on MyBGSU!

Want to make some additional plastic bottle waste? Then go buy a bottled water! Yeah, I know we offer those refillable nalgene bottles, but we don’t make regular money returns on those.

Go ahead and pick up a cafeteria tray and load it with food, too! I don’t care if you eat any of it – that doesn’t matter to me. Just give me your I.D. for a second.

If I come across as an irritatingly disgruntled eco-fanatic, then I apologize. I buy my groceries with wasteful plastic bags, and I drive a gasoline-powered car like most other people. I’m no environmentalist.

I just don’t see the logic in why the University keeps its cafeteria trays around when they engender so much waste by means of squandered electricity and partially consumed foodstuffs.

Money is tight these days, and although we’re starting to emerge from this economic crisis, we’re still very deep inside it. A great reduction of maintenance and cleaning costs would stem from the removal of cafeteria trays from our University dining halls.

Besides, trays aren’t essential to the dining hall experience. Remove them, and save some money.

Simple, right? I hope so.

Respond to Levi at [email protected]

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