A couple of weeks ago I saw the movie Tapped at N.C. State’s enviro-movie series. It was good. It covered almost every topic surrounding plastic water bottle usage. Just to mention a few:
Container issues -
- Plastic bottles are made from petroleum and oil refineries can be very harmful to a local community.
- Harmful BPA plastic is found in hard water cooler containers
- Floating oceanic garbage patches are full of plastic like that found in the North Atlantic Gyre
- Bottle bill states and their high recycling rates were mentioned. However, only six of the 11 bottle bill states include water bottles in their legislation.
- In response to this issue, some places are removing water from vending machines. I’m not sure if this is the correct message we want to send regarding our public health.
Water issues -
- Recent droughts required citizens to conserve water, but water bottling companies had no such restrictions. You’ll see local N.C. elected officials and environmental groups discussing this topic.
- Tap water is tested daily; however, bottled water is a self-regulated industry that doesn’t have to publicly release its water testing results.
- Marketing for bottled water makes tap water seem unsafe or impure.
- The FDA does not oversee any bottled water plants that do not include interstate commerce laws.
- Only half of a person’s job at the FDA oversees this industry.
- It’s all about who controls the water. Our laws need to reflect the greater good.
My take-away – drink water from the tap, if you can. Bring a reusable container with you, if you can. Drink from a plastic bottle (if you must) and recycle it, if you can. This brings up the issue of convenience – Please carry your water bottle to a recycling bin. It might be more difficult than throwing it away, but it is very important!
One last thing – I am looking for a collapsible cup or jug that will fit in my purse. Kind-of like a fold-up cloth bag (i.e., Chico bag). Know of anything?
Look for my write-up of “No Impact Man” soon.