We’ve all been in this situation: You head out to work or class in the morning, but realize on the way that you need water. Many people would stop in at the nearest store and buy a plastic water bottle. It might seem harmless, but plastic water bottles are actually a huge drain on earth’s natural resources! Here are the facts you need to know about plastic water bottles and 4 reasons to stop buying them.
Impact on Natural Resources
The world drinks about 50 billion bottles of water per year.
17 million barrels of oil are required to produce those bottles.
17 million barrels of oil is enough to power 1 million cars for an entire year.
That is a huge global impact for a product that will only be used once! Plastic bottle production wastes water as well. Plastic bottles require three times more water to produce than the amount of water that actually goes into the bottle.
Think about it… precious natural resources are being wasted so that companies can sell a product that is essentially free!
Litter is Out of Control
Sure, disposable water bottles are recyclable, but the fact is that only 20 percent of plastic water bottles actually get recycled. And most disposable caps are not recyclable.
Many water bottles and all of the caps end up in landfills or as litter. U.S. landfills are packed with 2 million tons of plastic water bottles, even though most of them are recyclable. Even worse is when caps and bottles end up in the ocean, where marine life mistake them for food and are killed by the plastic.
Bottled Water is Glorified Tap Water
Many major brands of bottled water are really just “purified” municipal tap water. But bottled water isn’t even that clean, according to many sources. One report found that 18 major brands of bottled water contained traces of over 24,000 chemicals that can be harmful to health.
The EPA vigorously tests all tap water, and regularly reports their safety findings. The FDA is in charge of testing bottled water, but their testing is not nearly as vigorous as the EPA’s and fewer
regulations are in place about the information that bottled water companies have to disclose.
Save Money and Do the Right Thing
The price of a bottle of water is marked up by nearly 4000 percent, and is more expensive per gallon than gas. Water is essentially a free natural resource, and is an absolute necessity to life. In a way, buying bottled water is supporting companies that are putting a ridiculous price tag on one of life’s most precious resources and doing serious harm to the environment. It might seem like only a small change, but your choice to stop buying disposable water bottles can save you a lot of money and inspire others to do the right thing.
You can lessen negative impacts on the environment, drink healthier water and save money by using a reusable water bottle. So, please, ditch the disposable!