Campus recycling policies cause student outrage

Sam Ruvolo, Contributing Writer

As students were hopping in their gas-guzzling machines and heading towards New Jersey for the holidays, the University was making some big changes – most of which shocked the student body upon their return after winter break. Students have demonstrated their frustration with the amendments that have been made to the new plates and bowls that are distributed in the Bison.

The Bison Café has permanently incorporated a new initiative of cardboard bowls as the new takeout option, ensuring the recyclability and biodegradability of the containers, while also reducing the presence of harmful plastics on campus. This has been something the University has been discussing for a while but was hesitant to implement due to students’ reactions.

A student-led protest occurred last week outside of the Elaine Langone Center at around 1.pm. The group of students started chanting after their lunch experience in the Bison Café proved to be disappointing and rather appalling. 

Many students have taken issue with the University’s pledge to become more sustainable. A new Instagram page has emerged as a result of the new cardboard bowls. The recent posts on the page showed students at the protest carrying posters reading phrases such as “bring back the plastic” and “strangle more sea-turtles.” The University is working on getting the Instagram page shut down.

The Bucknellian spoke with Lily Litter ’20, a student who expressed her reservations with the new bowls. “It’s just not fair,” Litter said. “My chopped salad doesn’t fit the same way in these paper bowls, and the bottom gets soggy with my dressing.” 

Salad sizes are just the beginning of these frustrations, as the new bowls are also causing panic across campus with the question of how to dispose of them. 

“As students, we have a lot on our plate,” Dan Dump ’22 said. “The University already makes it difficult to recycle, with the placement of two confusing garbage bins next to one another. Now they expect us to know what to do with these paper things? I just miss the simple days when we could throw everything out and not think about it!” 

What can we expect next from the University that will stop at nothing to save our planet? Paper straws? Reusable cutlery? These angered students better prepare for more progressive and profound change because these earth-saving cardboard bowls are just the beginning!

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