8 Reasons not to Drink Bottled Water
Here are just 8 Reasons not to Drink Bottled Water and to get a water filter for your family. 1) Bottled water isn't a good value Take, for instance, Pepsi's Aquafina or Coca-Cola's Dasani bottled water. Both are sold in 20 ounce sizes and can be purchased from vending machines alongside soft drinks — and at the same price. Assuming you can find a $1 machine, that works out to 5 cents an ounce. These two brands are essentially filtered tap water, bottled close to their distribution point. Most municipal water costs less than 1 cent per gallon. Now consider another widely sold liquid: Gasoline. In the U.S., the average price per gallon is hovering around $3. There are 128 ounces in a gallon, which puts the current price of gasoline at a fraction over 2 cents an ounce. So you can understand why there's no shortage of companies that want to get into the water selling business. In terms of price versus production cost, bottled water puts Big Oil to shame. 2) No healthier than tap water In theory, bottled water in the United States falls under the regulatory authority of the Food and Drug Administration. In practice, about 70 percent of bottled water never crosses state lines for sale, making it exempt from FDA oversight. In the U.S. municipal water falls under the Environmental Protection Agency, and is regularly inspected for bacteria and toxic chemicals. Want to know how your community scores? Check out the Environmental Working Group's National Tap Water Database. While public safety groups correctly point out that many municipal water systems are aging and there remain hundreds of chemical contaminants for which no standards have been established, there's very little empirical evidence that suggests bottled water is any cleaner or better for you than its tap equivalent. 3) Bottled water means garbage Where do all those empty plastic bottles go? About 86 percent of empty plastic water bottles in the United States land in the garbage instead of being recycled. That amounts to about two million tons of PET plastic bottles piling up in U.S. landfills each year.
That plastic requires up to 47 million gallons of oil per year to produce. And while the plastic used to bottle beverages is of high quality and in demand by recyclers, over 80 percent of plastic bottles are simply thrown away. Thanks to its slow decay rate, the vast majority of all plastics ever produced still exist — somewhere. 4) Bottled water means less attention to public systems Many people drink bottled water because they don't like the taste of their local tap water, or because they question its safety. Once distanced from public systems, these consumers have little incentive to support bond issues and other methods of upgrading municipal water treatment. In California, for example, the American Society of Civil Engineers estimated the requirement of $17.5 billion in improvements to the state's drinking water infrastructure as recently as 2005. In the same year, the state lost 222 million gallons of drinkable water to leaky pipes. 5) The corporatization of water In their documentary Thirst, authors Alan Snitow and Deborah Kaufman discuss the rapid worldwide privatization of the municipal water supplies and the effect these purchases are having on local economies. In the United States, 24 percent of bottled water sold is either Pepsi’s Aquafina (13 percent of the market) or Coke’s Dasani (11 percent of the market). Large corporations are stepping in to purchase groundwater and distribution rights where they are able too. Some contracts give preferential treatment to the water bottlers over the town’s taxpayers because the company can draw the maximum amount of water it wants, regardless of drought or water shortage. The bottled water industry is an important component in their drive to commoditize what many feel is a basic human right: the access to safe and affordable water. 6) It’s more environmentally-friendly to switch from bottled water to tap or filtered water. Plastic bottle requires fuel for production and transportation which can increase pollution. Less demand for bottled water will reduce the chances of polluting the environment. Shipping bottles of water across the country and across the continent takes tremendous amount of fuel adding to air pollution. 7)Taste - People say they drink bottled water because it tastes better than tap. But, in blind taste tests, people can’t tell the difference. In fact, one taster in a 20/20 taste test said Evian “…tasted like toilet water”. 8) Leaching Chemical - Harmful chemicals in plastic bottles can leach into water making it unhealthier than tap or filtered water.