Don’t buy bottled water

-Sustainability Advisory Group for Environmental Stewardship, Wesleyen University

We are working with Bon Appétit to find ways to reduce our use of bottled water on campus. Individuals can help by not buying it. Transportation of bottled water is an unnecessary use of gasoline, and other statistics associated with bottled water’s impact on the environment are staggering:

  • The EPA has stronger regulations for tap water than the FDA has for bottled water. Thus, bottled water is not necessarily safer to drink.
  • An estimated 25 percent or more of bottled water is really just tap water in a bottle–sometimes further treated, sometimes not. (NRDC)
  • 86% of plastic water bottles in the US become garbage or litter, which is 30 million bottles a day.  (Container Recycling Institute)
  • Sent to the landfill, the bottles can take up to a millennium to biodegrade.
    (E magazine)
  • Globally, 2.7 million tons of plastic are used to bottle water per year.
  • 1.5 million barrels of crude oil is used to produce the water bottles consumed by Americans each year.  This amounts to enough to fuel about 100,000 US cars for a year.
  • Bottled water is 5,000 times more expensive than tap water.
  • Americans spend over $15,400,000 on bottled water every day.
  • Bottled water companies enter communities, dry up their local water resource, and degrade aquifers.  This often leaves communities without an adequate safe water source. (Earth Policy Institute)
  • Over one third of the world faces serious water shortages. (United Nations Environmental Programme)
  • $100 billion is spent on bottled water annually.  One year’s worth of bottled water expenditures could completely cover the development of efficient and sustainable water infrastructure throughout the entire world, three times over. (UN Millennium Development Goals).

Source: Wesleyen University