Illustration by Christine Hipp.
Illustration by Christine Hipp.

The student-led conservation project “Drop Your Own Drip” (DYOD) has been going strong since last year. A student competition that delivers water usage data to on-campus residents, DYOD offers prizes to apartments able to significantly reduce their consumption.

Third-year Sarah Angulo facilitates the project, which was created as part of the Education for Sustainable Living program. She said the project holds lasting attention of the school’s Student Environmental Center, receiving funding and support.

“UCSC has taken a lot of steps against waste in general but not enough emphasis has been put on saving water,” she said.

If UCSC is able to stand out against other universities in water conservation, the campus could see more funding for its sustainability efforts. Still, Angulo said, there are some big issues to tackle.

“Since the beginning [of DYOD], student water consumption has actually gone up,” Angulo said. “I don’t know why this is so but I hope this project raises awareness.”

DYOD could also affect the Long Range Development Plan, a long-debated plan to enroll more students and develop the currently forested upper campus.

“We have to practice better water conservation for this to happen,” Angulo said. “We want to use the exact same amount of water we’re using now but with thousands more people.”

While the future effect of DYOD on LRDP is not known, water conservation will always be important for California and the campus.