Water from Plastic Bottles or the Tap

plastic water bottles
It’s really interesting, and a walk down memory lane, to be reminded how there was a time not that long ago when the idea of selling bottled water would have been almost laughable. Sure we’ll pay for a bottle of flavoured liquid, but plain ordinary water? Crazy. And yet it’s this huge business now. Fast food restaurants and beverage coolers everywhere sell those ubiquitous bottles of water. Even weirder is that this water often sells for more than all that name brand soda. Talk about a good marketing campaign. You can sure see why the little video below talks about the companies “manufacturing demand” along with their plastic bottles.

Ironic that some of the companies producing all this plastic encased water make claims (though often very successfully refuted as the video explains) of having better water purity when it is their very manufacturing of all these plastic water bottles that is contributing to the pollution of water supplies. Talk about manufacturing demand in an even more insidious way.

Once the video below gets going, there’s a lot of really interesting information and specifics, including how the whole water bottle thing got started. It also makes the cost differential very tangible by asking, “What about a $10,000 sandwich?” For that’s what it works out to be considering bottled water is about 2,000 times the typical cost of tap. That’s a 200,000% markup, and I hardly think a disposable/recyclable plastic bottle is worth that.

But since we’re used to paying for bottles of water with sugar and flavouring, the idea of paying for a bottle of the flavourless liquid is no longer so foreign. But what this shows is just how over-priced the sugar and flavouring beverages are. It does not act as justification for the insane price of bottled water. Like they said, who would pay ten grand for one sandwich, but we do the equivalent of that everyday with water.

How easily we become accustomed to a new norm. To many people now, drinking water automatically comes in a bottle. Manufacturers and marketers have tried to convince us that water out of a tap is both déclassé and unhealthy. I absolutely filter my tap water to get out bacteria, lead, chlorine, chloramine among a number of other things, but that’s a subject for another day. Yet it’s almost like tap water has become a foreign concept. Thankfully attention paid to the problems of all this excess plastic, not to mention BPA and other concerns, is bringing the focus back to all our nearly free water that just runs right into our homes.

Not everyone in the world is lucky enough to have such cheap and easy access to clean water whenever we want. It sure would be interesting to see what could be done if all those profits from bottled water went to cleaning up the water supplies of the poorest regions of our world. Our world. With no 200,000% markup.

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