Bottle or tap?
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  1. #1

    Bottle or tap?

    An article at cbc.ca talks about the bottled water phenomenon. Bottled water is another example of ad dollars at work, convincing consumers to spend their money on something they don't need, and in this case something harmful to the environment and with a negligible health benefit.

    Critics of the [bottled water] industry say advertising by bottled water companies gives consumers the impression the product is safer and healthier than Canadian tap water, even though municipal water is more stringently tested. In Canada, local water supplies are inspected every day, whereas bottled-water plants are inspected at three-year intervals. -- cbc.ca
    Bold is mine.

    I wonder how often local and bottled-water plants in the United States are tested.

    An incredible 80% of plastic water bottles end up being incinerated of sent to landfills (cbc.ca).

    Anywhoo, follow the link for additional information. The article reports on a study, Against the flow: Which households drink bottled water? looking at bottled water consumption across Canada, considering factors such as income, education, and age.

    If you'd rather not follow the link, then here's a summary:

    * Lower income (< $40k) households drink less bottled water than higher income (> $91k) -- makes sense, bottled water isn't free.
    * Only 17% of seniors reported drinking mostly bottled water at home.
    * In high income (> $91k) households with a high school diploma or less, 44% primarily drank bottled water.
    * In high income (> $91k) households with "some post-secondary education", 38% primarily drank bottled water.
    * Only 29% of high income (> $91k) households having at least one member with a university degree drank bottled water.

    The rest of the article briefly goes though the environmental issues and bottled water consumption stats -- 188.8 billion litres in 2007, worldwide.

    I need a drink.
    Why is everyone who drives slower than me an idiot, and everyone who drives faster a maniac?

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Honored Elder campy's Avatar
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    I drink water pumped out of my own well here at home. I keep thinking I ought to get it tested sometime. It's been 21 years now ...

  3. #3
    Registered User Exalted Member lunchmeat's Avatar
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    Oh, I thought you were talking about beer (draught, by choice). Outside Europe I only drank bottled water during Desert Storm and only then because it was what we had available. The thing in Europe is that the old iron pipes make the municipal water most places taste like rust, coupled with the health spa craze of the 1890s touting the medicinal benefits of certain springs, has made bottled water is real popular there. I don't drink the stuff here since I can't justify paying for something in a bottle that I already pay for from the city (well out here, back home it comes from a well, which I payed for). That and the vast amount of litter that the water bottle produces and added stress on already crowded landfills makes the stuff viable only en extremis.
    The clincher was discovering that one of the most popular brands is nothing more than San Antonio tap water.
    Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto - “You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind each blade of grass.”

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    Registered User Exalted Member kyojikasshu's Avatar
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    Unless there's a need (i.e. because of drought or contamination), I just don't see the point in prepackaged bottled water.

    Y'know what I do when I need to take water with me? I just reuse a Gatorade bottle.

  5. #5
    Registered User Exalted Member Fireand'chutes77's Avatar
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    I usually drink tap, unless I need my water to be resealable and transportable. (for example, if I'm going to the gym, packing a lunch to school, or taking a road trip.) Even then, I try to put the bottle in a recycling bin as often as I can. It seems utterly ridiculous to be drinking bottled water inside your own home.

    At home, we've got one of those "PUR" water filters you screw onto the kitchen tap. If people are freaked out about tap water, why don't they just put one of those filters on the main tap and save money from not having to buy all those cases of bottled water?
    Carpe Navi: Because you never know when you'll get to go boating at government expense again.

  6. #6
    Registered User Exalted Member kyojikasshu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fireand'chutes77 View Post
    At home, we've got one of those "PUR" water filters you screw onto the kitchen tap. If people are freaked out about tap water, why don't they just put one of those filters on the main tap and save money from not having to buy all those cases of bottled water?
    I bought a PUR water pitcher about a decade ago, and I still use it. I keep it in the basement fridge, which is pretty convenient since I'm down here a lot.

  7. #7
    I try to avoid plastic bottles, mainly for the environmental impact. My city has a lot of lime in the water, and we have a water filter for the tap water. I do know people who drink bottled water in their homes. It's not terribly uncommon.
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  8. #8
    Moderator Venerated Elder TransWarpDrive's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fireand'chutes77 View Post
    At home, we've got one of those "PUR" water filters you screw onto the kitchen tap. If people are freaked out about tap water, why don't they just put one of those filters on the main tap and save money from not having to buy all those cases of bottled water?
    I bought a PUR water pitcher about a decade ago, and I still use it. I keep it in the basement fridge, which is pretty convenient since I'm down here a lot.
    Some of my friends use either the PUR filter system; or the Brita filters and pitchers. We have several cases of bottled water here at home; those are mostly taken along in the car (long road trips, etc.) At home, I drink water from the tap. I let it run for a minute or two so it gets nice and cold; even then, I pour it over some ice cubes in a glass. I've put pitchers of water in the fridge to chill now and then - it all depends on how full the fridge currently is whether or not I do it.
    I'll tell you, though - I enjoy a lot of different beverages: cola, lemonade, Gatorade, iced tea, fruit juices. But there are times when nothing tastes quite as sweet to me as a nice cold drink of ice water.

  9. #9
    Moderator Venerated Elder TransWarpDrive's Avatar
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    Speaking of spending money on bottled water, does anyone remember the "Evian" brand that was quite popular a few years back? Spell the name backward and see what you get...

  10. #10
    Registered User Veteran Member NinjaNaco's Avatar
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    My family buys bottled water, than once the bottles are empty, refills them with tap (or, at least when I do it, water from the fridge). Best of both worlds.

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