Bottled Water blues

14 May

Today I took the pledge – to get OFF the Bottle – the plastic water bottle that is, and I urge you to do the same. I am ready with my stainless steel water bottles and a few hard plastic ones that I’ve had for years. I pledge to use these reusable bottles daily, instead of buying plastic water bottles at a store. I’ve got a filter that I love attached to the water that runs freely from my tap. Even without the filter, the EPA regularly checks and regulates our tap water, but not bottled water. Much of the bottled water we buy is simply bottled tap water..

Tapped – is a new documentary that was born out of the discovery of something called “the plastic stew,” a floating island of plastic in the Pacific ocean roughly twice the size of Texas. Do you know about this?

It is stunning really, what we have created. And of course, with plastic taking 700 years to decompose and much of our daily needs being met with plastic – the equation only gets more complicated with time.

To try to explain this to a child is daunting. It sounds entirely irresponsible of course. We can say that we didn’t know the damage we were causing as we went to, for example, bottle water for our convenience, in order to bring water to people far from the source..?

It is an easier story to tell, if we can also offer a solution, commitment and resolve to do something different. If each of us were to take responsibility just for our own cup, or bottle for drinking, it would shape an entirely different future for all of us. offers the following statistics:

In 2007, Americans drank an average 218 bottles of water each for a total of 66 billion bottles (total spent $12 billion). Of that total, only 23% was recycled.

Roughly 50 billion plastic water bottles end up in U.S. landfills each year — 140 million every day!  That’s enough, laid end to end, to reach from NJ to China and back each day.

The problem with plastics:

Besides the growing garbage stew in the Pacific and the fact that plastic takes 700 years to decompose, ecosystems and wildlife are negatively impacted by plastic debris.

Disposable plastic water bottles are made out of oil which is a finite natural resource.  Plastic bottles require energy to make and transport.  Currently, the amount of oil we use to produce water bottles each year (17 million barrels) could fuel over one million cars for an entire year.  One disposable bottle of water requires ½ cup of oil to make!

Your tap water:

Tap water is closely regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Water Act of 1977. Bottled water is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not subject to all the same testing requirements.

Tap water can be 1000 times cheaper than bottled water ($.002 vs. $1-$2 per gallon).

Over 25% of bottled water is actually filtered tap water.

Which reusable bottle is best?

Stainless steel (food grade) is non-reactive, non-leaching, light weight, non-leaking and is 100% recyclable. 

For a comparison of reusable bottles, please visit

To take the pledge, go here.

One Response to “Bottled Water blues”


  1. Happy New Year! « ButterBeansKitchen's Blog - January 1, 2011

    […] a project to share to inspire the beginnings of great things in 2011, and settled on this image. Remember the plastic island – the floating heap of garbage and chemical sludge that is floating in the Pacific comprised […]

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