Sunday, January 17, 2010

oh snap--filter that tap

A big concern I hear about conservation is that it is just too much effort. This is a myth. There are tons of ways one can conserve without much difficulty. In fact, conservation conserves more than natural resources--it conserves your dollars. Case in point: bottled water.

Bottled water kills me. Sure, sure...getting a bottle here and there is no biggy. But keeping a filter at home and bringing a reusable water bottle around with you is the yellow brick road to less trash and more cash.

But what if I recycle my bottles? Recycling takes energy. Honestly, I'm not even convinced recyclables get recycled. The best ways to conserve are to reduce and re-use, and recycle what's left after that.

In you are concerned about transition from bottled water to filtered water, here is a great resource that can help: the FilterForGood campaign.

I particularly enjoyed the fact section, which I took directly from the site for your convenience (the best facts are at the bottom in red):

Why is bottled water waste a concern? Here are just a few reasons...

  • Americans used 50 billion water bottles in 2006 and sent 38 billion water bottles to landfills, the equivalent of 912 million gallons of oil.1, 2, 3, 4 If laid end to end, that’s enough bottles to travel from the Earth to the Moon and back 10 times.5 If placed in a landfill or littered, those bottles could take up to 1,000 years to biodegrade.2
  • In 2006, the average American used 167 disposable water bottles, but only recycled 38.1
  • Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles in 2006. However, the U.S.'s recycling rate for plastic is only 23 percent, which means 38 billion water bottles — more than $1 billion worth of plastic — are wasted each year.1

Ditching bottled water keeps Mother Earth and your wallet green.

  • One Brita pitcher filter can effectively replace as much as 300 standard 16.9-ounce bottles. So you can get great-tasting water without so much waste. Talk about refreshing.
  • The average Brita pitcher filters 240 gallons of water a year for about 19 cents a day.6 Put in perspective, to get the same amount of water from bottled water would require 1,818 16.9-ounce water bottles a year.6
  • For about $10 each, you can purchase a 16-ounce or 32-ounce Nalgene bottle, saving you hundreds of dollars a year on bottled water.
  • Hydration at its best — carry the water you need and reduce your impact on the environment — one Nalgene bottle can last for decades, making it easy to stop buying single-serve bottled water to fulfill your everyday hydration needs.

Many people drink bottled water because they believe it to be of a higher quality, cleaner and better-tasting, but that's not necessarily true.

  • 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). Both brands are bottled, purified municipal water.1
  • If you don't like the taste of your tap water, try Brita. Nine out of 10 consumers say "Brita clearly tastes better," according to an in-home usage study. They preferred the taste of Brita water — filtered through pitchers — to tap.8
  • Dr. Gina Solomon, a senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group, told The New York Times that "there is no reason to believe that bottled water is safer than tap water."9
  • In the U.S., public water is regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which requires multiple daily tests for bacteria and makes results available to the public. The Food and Drug Administration, which regulates bottled water, only requires weekly testing and does not share its findings with the EPA or the public.9


Jacob said...

Did you say oh snap?

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Anonymous said...

Something to note about recycling is that water bottles can never be recycled into water bottles because of all the fda they are more like downcycled. Sometimes upcycled into other materials like fabrics or toys...but you know, its still just making more junk.

Anonymous said...

Have you seen this yet?: literally just that. a fertilizer company that actually ships its product in old plastic water bottles.