I have to apologize ahead of time, because I haven’t officially started my research yet, but I am starting to work on a short research paper about water, specifically drinking water that gets stored, transported, and sold in plastic bottles.
I have realized that we are lazy. Yeah, that’s the truth of it. We’re damn lazy! We are so used to having the convenience of everything we want, anytime, anywhere, and we often don’t have a clue about how we will end up paying for it with our bodies and our environment, let alone wasting our money on it now.
Bottled water. Why are we so obsessed? We want clean and safe water, yeah, I get it… but why do we (here in most of Canada and the US) distrust our (treated and safe) tap water so much?
The argument about bottled water tasting better might be a good one… if there wasn’t such a thing as a water filter that you can attach to your tap while filling your glass or reusable hard plastic (BPA-free, etc.) or stainless steel bottle. I completely get the issue of the taste of the water–I am a self-declared water snob, after all.
However, when you dig a little deeper into the issue, you will discover that, a) bottled water is simply glorified tap water; b) it takes SO much fuel to transport water around, when almost everyone has perfectly good water coming out of their tap; c) bottled water is basically a money-making gimmick, a commodity invented not with the goal of getting clean water where there is none, but with the goal of making a profit; d) the plastic bottles leech chemicals (BPA, antimony and others) into your drinking water, making it less healthy for you than your tap water. Really. True, some companies have eliminated tap water from their individual-sized bottles, but not from their big ones (the big blue ones that you refill and use with a dispenser at home or in the office); e) not only does it take a lot of fuel to truck bottles of water everywhere, but you know those little plastic bottles? They’re made with oil! That’s right, they’re a petroleum product–there goes even MORE of our non-renewable resources!
I am on a bit of a mission to educate myself and in turn rant and rave a bit to those who will listen that it pays to buy a bottle, one reusable bottle (okay, maybe more than one), and refill it. Plan ahead. You can do it, I believe in you! It pays in many ways: your wallet will be heavier, your body will be healthier, and the environment will benefit from having less plastic products tossed into its backyard and be able to hold onto more of one of its essential fluids, oil.
If you MUST buy a bottle of water (let’s face it, every now and then, you’re desperate and you forgot to bring a bottle and you don’t trust that homeless guy’s cup), FOR GOD’S SAKE RECYCLE IT!!