Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Water for Thought

The numbers, from Time Magazine:

1.1 billion - people around the world that the U.N. estimates lack safe drinking water, a number that could reach 5 billion by 2025

8.25 billion - gallons of bottled water (31 billion L) Americans drank in 2006, a 9.5% increase from the year before.

$10.8 billion - amount spent on bottled water last year — all for something you can get virtually for free

4,000 - tons of CO2 generated each year — the equivalent of the emissions of 700 cars — by importing bottled water from Fiji, France and Italy, America's largest suppliers

Less than 25% - percent of water bottles recycled, leaving 2 billion pounds (900 million kg) a year to clog landfills.

If American tap water were unsafe, I could understand why people would want to drink bottled water. But the infuriating and depressing thing is that all of this waste is unecessary-- American tap water is safe. New York City water is among the cleanest in the world.

Is it really too hard for us to take 20 seconds to fill up a bottle with tap water before we leave for work in the morning?

Also, how hard is it to throw your plastic bottles into a recycling bin?


candyfloss said...

at work we pitch in on a water cooler & bring our own Nalgenes or mugs to reuse. it has saved us all a ton of money & there's no bottles wasted since the big jugs the water comes in are sterilized & reused. we pay about 7 bucks (a fraction of what we'd pay for two or three bottles of water a day) a month each for all the water we could hope to drink.

bazu said...

I hear your frustration. Daiku and I have been on a bottled-water-free diet and it's going really well. Once you realize the political reality of water, not to mention the crap that leeches out from plastic waters, it's really easy to say goodbye to bottled water. Now, how can we convince everyone else?

vko said...

The numbers are staggering. NYC water is the best tasting water & the city spends a ton of money making sure it's clean enough to drink. I invested in a Brita filter because although NYC water is good, building pipes & such can be old & harbour contaminants, so I prefer to filter my NYC tap!

urban vegan said...

I hate plastic.

Kumudha said...

It is really nice when some organizations have banned bottled water...


Interesting post!

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