7.03.2007

oddities { Bottled Water

Saw an interesting article on BoingBoing that redirected me to a Fast Company article about bottled water. Now, I drank bottle water, but usually the fizzy kind, and I don't drink it all the time. Most of the water I drink is from the tap, filtered through a Brita filter, because honestly, Rochester city tap water both tastes and smells funny unless its been filtered (this is another story about Rochester and its bad water, poor air quality, for such a small city). But I was raised on the tap. I used to drink water from fountains at the park. I do think we as a country need to re-think bottled water. I've felt for sometime a lot of the bottled water hype is a scam. As a friend once put it in regards to Dasani; 'You mean they want me to pay $1 [per bottle] for the water they won't put in Coke? Screw that!' Sadly I think what bottled water is all about greed. Which makes it a perfect icon for American opulence. I remember going to Lilith-Faire a few years back. It was August, hot as hell, the kind of day that can sun-stroke you and heat exhaust you, but they were checking everyone's bags at the entrance for cameras, guns, weapons, and containers. That was the first time I recall having my backpack searched for bottles and containers for liquids. They never gave a reason why, but when we got inside I could see why. Bottled water, 20oz bottles, were being sold for $3/bottle. We were thirsty and the group we were with had a child. So what we did (and we were not the only ones) bought two bottles, drank them, and then refilled them in the bathroom sinks. Many people complained and the medical station was full with people with heat exhaustion.

Give the article a read.

4 comments:

AllThingsSpring said...

I've been refilling bottles with tap water (filtered or otherwise), just to have the container. (I like the wide mouth ones) The rare time I buy bottled water now is at the cinema, mostly because I'm trying to get off the carbonated junk they otherwise sell there.

Bottled water is a scam, but it gets worse. One of the major pushes in the next few years will likely be the privatization of water services and the expansion of bottled water as an industry. After all, business isn't just going to want that $16 billion a year to disappear. I'm astounded at the marketing behind what is one of the most basic elements of life. Vitaminwater!? Water with protein added!? Seriously, just eat right and drink filtered tap water. Save your money. As population pressures, pollution, and the limited supplies of fresh water come to prominence, you will likely see the cost of water generally go up. The worst of these is imported water, where water has been imported from a continent away. The fuel costs to get it here make it a tremendous waste. This is not to say I want all imported food to go away - even if the need for more local and organic agriculture is paramount in the days ahead for sustainability, I'd still rather not do without my coffee beans from Tanzania, or a bottle of late-harvest Reisling from Germany. But water is just H20, a few minerals, and oxygen. Harvest it locally.

Oh, and I should point out I'm posting this on a computer whose CPU required hundreds of gallons of some of the purest water in the world (the stuff most clean rooms would use is bilge as far as Intel is concerned).

GeekGoddess said...

The popularity is also one of the reasons given, as of late, for a rise in childhood cavities. Bottled water isn't fluoridated. Kids now drink more bottled water than tap water.

AllThingsSpring said...

I should add that filtered water has the same effect - removal of fluoride. It is easy to get back - just drink green tea. Green tea is loaded with fluoride.

GeistX said...

I also brush my teeth with anti-cavity toothpaste that contains flouride.