Straws could be removed from dining to combat the high cost of plastic straws, said senator Kaleb Chowning at the Student Government Association meeting Wednesday.
Previously, Chowning wrote a resolution calling for dining to use paper straws as a greener alternative for plastic straws. However, Chowning said he now wants to gradually remove straws from dining due to the high cost of paper straws.
“I had guesstimates on what paper straws would cost and it turns out those weren’t accurate. It turns out dining can buy straws from only one supplier and that supplier’s cost for [paper] straws was outrageous,” Chowning said. “Straws are a convenience item that cause a lot of environmental damage. Plus, if we can get rid of them, we can save students a little more money in dining.”
Chowning removed the previous resolution regarding paper straws from the senate floor. Instead, he said he plans to write legislation to gradually phase out straws and reduce their waste in dining.
Other universities have had students look into removing straws from campus. Organizations from the University of Maryland recently petitioned to ban straws from campus to reduce waste, according the the Diamondback, the university's student newspaper.
Everyday, the U.S. uses enough straws to wrap around the earth 2.5 times — which go into landfills and waterways, according to The Last Plastic Straw.
Additionally, at Wednesday’s meeting, Ball State Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC) inclusion was encouraged with a possible constitutional amendment.
SGA’s constitution could be amended to ensure there is an ROTC representative involved every year.
For the past year and a half, SGA had senator Kaylin Armstrong, who is also the Cadet Battalion Commander of ROTC, as its representative.
“ROTC has put their foot in the door to show their commitment to be involved in SGA,” Armstrong said. “We are trying to get out there and get more relationships on the campus. We think this a great step in that direction.”
Contact Liz Rieth with comments at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @liz_rieth.