The Refill Project

The use of plastic bottles has increased rapidly over the past few decades. Along with the use of these bottles comes the problem of how to best deal with them after they have been used. Although recycling is a wonderful option, it simply has not kept up with the use of the bottles.

A few months ago, Graham Turk (Class of 2013) made an appointment to see me about an idea he had developed. The idea was to reduce the use of plastic at Wheatley by encouraging the use of refillable bottles. This would be done through special adaptors for our water fountains that would turn them into bottle filling stations. At these bottle filling stations, students and teachers would be able to get on demand cold filtered water.

In addition to these bottle filling stations, Graham planned to create a movement encouraged to use them. The center of this movement would be a web site ( to inform members of our community and help them transition to reusable bottles. Needless to say, I encouraged Graham to pursue this initiative and pledged our support.

Since this initial conversation, Wheatley has installed four different bottle filling stations — all to a terrific reception! Graham’s web site is up and running and he received a grant of $10,000 to purchase high quality water bottles to be sold at a reduced price to the Wheatley community.

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