Friday, July 24, 2009

Bottled Water Versus Tap Water; What's Your Choice?

Many times what is right for me and my family isn’t what is right for you and your family. And yes, it is difficult to make the right choice, but I am going to try and forgo convince for the sake of the environment. I drink a lot of water, all bottled. There are so many different thoughts on bottled water. Many people talk about the cost of buying water verses just simply drinking tap water. According to this article here “Commercially-bottled water costs $.25 to $2/bottle…[while] Municipal tap water costs less than a penny to fill a gallon jug! This article here talks about the rise in tooth decay due to the lack of fluoride in bottled water. But, I am only going to focus on two issues; one the chemicals in the bottle that may or may not harm you and two the concern for the environment.

I’m sure you’ve heard the discussions about the chemical bisphenol A (or BPA) but, if you haven’t you need to know that BPA’s a chemical found in soft/flexible plastics that has been found to leach into the food or liquids you drink when heated. Environmental Health News has an article here that explains the side effects of BPA including heart disease and diabetes. The main concern is said to be when the plastic is heated in the microwave or left in the car, but now there is a Harvard study that says BPA is also leached into cold liquids. If BPA is as dangerous whether the food/liquid is cold or heated makes me just a little nervous. If you are concerned about the BPA's in other products, the Green Guide has a great article here about what to look for when purchasing plastic containers.

Being concerned for the environmental is another reason to stop purchasing plastic drinking water.I didn’t feel so bad about my use of plastic bottles while we were collecting them to recycle, but as we found out while living in central Arkansas, no one would take our plastic for the purpose of recycling and we were forced to throw away several large garbage bags of plastic bottles. Now I don’t know what your local recycling center accepts, but you may want to find out before you dismiss the issue. Just click here and enter you zip code to find a recycling center near you.

According to this article only 12% of plastic bottles were recycled in 2003. In fact, I dare you to keep up with ALL the plastic your family uses in a week, including what you use outside the home. Put it all in a garbage bag then at the end of a week look at how much plastic your family has throw away. Now I want you to multiply that by the 112 million families that live in the United States. That’s a lot of plastic; what do you think happens to all of that plastic?

I'm a realistic individual; I know our family won’t be able to give up plastic all together. I'm just talking about taking a small step toward reducing our carbon footprint. So, we decided to buy a PuR water system.

We picked this one up at Sam's Club. It was very reasonably priced and will hold up to 18 8oz cups of water, it even came with 2 aluminium bottles. As you can tell it doesn't take up much room in the fridge.

Okay, so who's up for the challenge? Let see how many plastic bottles we can keep out of the landfill this year!


Anonymous said...

I do a lot of both. We always have filtered water in a pitcher, and sometimes I buy bottled water. I find that I drink MORE water if I always have a cold bottle I can throw in my bag. Still, I don't buy bottled water every week at the grocery store. I have both an aluminum bottle that I use and a big plastic cup with a straw that is great, too.

Anonymous said...

I have been using PuR and Brita for about 5 years now. The whole reason I did not drink water from the tap was the taste. Now that's all I drink

Anonymous said...

Every family member has a Sigg bottle at our house.

katarinas mama said...

Excellent post. Very very true. We do have our Sigg bottles for kids to take to school but I have to admit on still relying on plastic for sporting events, playdates, etc. We do recycle the plastic however.

But you certainly make a good argument. I'll look into PUR next time I'm at Sam's. :)

Anonymous said...

Marye, Haven't read your blog in quite some time. I am, as always, so very proud of your writing ability. You are certainly articulate. This entry, the one about bottled water, is well documented. I agree. As you know we still drink water from the faucet. Tastes fine to me.

Faith- Inspired Designs by Faith said...

what a great blog!

Anonymous said...

We have chloramines in our water and it is very hard to find a filter for them.

Darla, Pencil Portrait Artist said...

I bought a large Brita pitcher and LOVE it. I want to get the kind that connects to faucet next. Occasionally I buy bottled water, but I really like not having to carry those large packages of bottles anymore!

Anonymous said...

What about refrigerated water vs non-refrigerated water?

“Be the change you want to see in the world.” mahatma gandhi