Friday, February 10, 2006

Reach for the Nalgene instead of the Evian

Bottled water is convenient. But that's about it, because it's not cheap (usually more expensive than gasoline), not necessarily better (guidelines for tap water are more stringent than bottled water), and it could in fact be bad for you (the added minerals in some waters could be harmful in large doses).

Rather than re-write the article that inspired this post, I'm going to ask that you click here to read it.

My favorite part: "Tap water comes to us through an energy-efficient infrastructure whereas bottled water must be transported long distances--and nearly one-fourth of it across national borders--by boat, train, airplane, and truck. This 'involves burning massive quantities of fossil fuels'".

My second favorite part: "More fossil fuels are used in packaging the water. Most water bottles are made with polyethylene terephthalate, a plastic derived from crude oil. 'Making bottles to meet Americans' demand for bottled water requires more than 1.5 million barrels of oil annually, enough to fuel some 100,000 U.S. cars for a year'".

Bottom line? Get the convenience of bottled water out of a Nalgene bottle (or similar), and get almost the same purity from a PUR water filter system or a Britta water filter system (to further purify your tap water...clearly not good enough for untreated water).

Time commitment? Zero. Next time you go to buy bottled water from the grocery store, ask where the Nalgene bottles are, and pick up a water filter system that can further purify your tap water.
Cost? Nalgene bottles range in price, but shouldn't run you more than $20, and a Britta jug with filter will cost ya $30ish. Depending upon how much bottled water you drink, you will pay for all this and have plenty to spare by not buying bottled. Go the extra mile and donate the money saved to a charity that supports clean water--either locally or internationally.
Impact? Reduce air pollution (transport of water, manufacture of plastic), save energy, and if you donate the money you save you can help bring clean water to the world.
Update: Relevant article in the NYTimes:

Update: Nalgene may be bad? Go Stainless instead:,_that_is)


Anonymous Andrew said...

Thank you for posting this. It drives me nuts how much bottled water the world goes through just because "it's so convenient". Living near the inevitable landfills isn't going to be so convenient, methinks.

11:11 AM  

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