Time to own up to an issue that nearly all of us contribute to….using bottled water. Are you one of us? Are you willing to stop?
Bottled water is fast becoming more than a pet peeve to me. When I see a celebrity talking about how we are destroying the environment, then taking a sip from a plastic bottle of water, it severely lessens the impact of their message.
Don’t they realize the damage water bottles are doing as well?
That’s just one example, but it may be the most visible one. Unless you watch the video that shows the island of water bottles in the ocean.
It’s something used so widely across the United States when we know it isn’t good for us or the environment.
Here are some interesting statistics if you need convincing:
- In the United states alone, 50 BILLION bottles of water are purchased each year.
- Usage shows an increase to 17 million barrels of oil to make the plastic bottles. That equals 340 million gallons of gas.
- Less than 25% of those plastic bottles are recycled. The rest are thrown in the trash.
- 40% of bottled water is regular water from the tap.
- The EPA requires multiple testings daily for municipal tap water and reports it. The FDA oversees bottled water. It is tested only weekly and reports are not made public. It makes me wonder if it is really purer at all.
Those are a few of the environmental stats. Next, look at the costs. Banthebottle.com reports that if you drink the recommended 8 glasses of water a day, your annual cost is 49 cents. Yes, that is annual. The same report shows the cost for bottled water would be $1400.00 a year.
Personally I think that figure is on the low side, especially when you think of how many bottles are purchased singly at a dollar or more a bottle.
If you are concerned about the taste, add a water filter. A water filter pitcher costs an average of 19 cents a day. An equal amount of bottled water would cost nearly $5.00 a day.
Even if you can afford to spend that much on bottled water, it’s seems wasteful to me. At the very least, you can buy the gallon containers for less than a dollar. That would be a start to save money and conserve.
Get a reusable bottle instead. Refill it from the filtered pitcher. It is washable and will last for years. We’re on year four with ours and they look as good as when we bought them. The nalgene bottles works well too and cost even less.
You can read the review I’ve done on stainless steel water bottles here.
I know there are times when bottled water is the best way to go. Often and airports we have little choice, though even there you can bring an empty reusable bottle to fill from a fountain once inside the airport.
Just imagine if we could start by cutting use by half. Would that be so difficult? What effect would we see if we used less bottles, less oil to produce the bottles? I hope you will join me. Make the effort. It is such an easy thing to do.
Here are a couple of examples of water bottles. We use the Sigg bottles, but the Nalgene bottles offer many size options at a reasonable cost. I do suggest a wide mouth so you can add ice it you choose.
January 25, 2015
Hi Kathryn, and thanks so much for your comments. The video should be on the article this one links to. It’s horrible where our water is so bad we have to buy it. I’m sure many areas have that problem too. I didn’t realize SF had good water. Very glad to hear it!
January 24, 2015
Merry, thank you for this article. I started drinking only Crystal Geyser bottled water back in the early 90s, after my geology professor told us how much crap our local computer manufacturer injected into our aquifer every single day. That professor had two young sons and said he did not allow them to drink tap water ever.
Well, fast forward twenty or so years and another state, and I finally got the message that here in northern California, at least, we have some mighty fine tap water that is not only some of the purest in the country, but also delicious.
At last, I could give up buying those cases of water every month. What a relief! Now I carry a Kleen Kanteen reusable stainless steel water bottle everywhere I go. My grandchildren have their own when we go out as well.
I regret all those years of using plastic bottles and often wonder how much bad plastic I ingested and how it may have affected my long-term health.
Thank you, especially, for the statistics. Amazing. Did I miss a link to the video? That is one I haven’t seen, and I surely would like to watch it.
January 1, 2015
I have one thing to say that may not be your intended understanding. I use B2P, pens made from recycled water bottles. So perhaps more uses for recycled water bottles would be a good idea. I do use water bottles because I drink a great deal of water, and don’t see myself trying to carry multiple plastic reusable bottles when I keep in hand a case of water or more. I can tuck a smaller bottle into my purse as well. Perhaps if the celebs were to pimp recycling water bottles that would lessen the impact of their eco friendly message. A well written article and your point is well taken. Have a successful new year.
January 8, 2015
Thank you Tanya for your comment. I’m thankful that you are one who recycles the bottles. It was surprising to me that only 25% of them are recycled. If they could get that number up into the 80 % I would feel better about it. When I see the video of the island they’ve created, it makes me feel really guilty.
I drink a lot of water too, but use my Sigg bottles and just refill them. Once in a while I buy a bottle, but it seems unnecessary when I can fill up the one I have. Let’s hope recycling improves soon!
January 10, 2015
You’re welcome. I enjoyed your article.