Backlash Against Bottled Water
There is a marketing war going on between the tap and bottled water with tap water seemingly winning out. Bottled water sales, which have been on a steady climb since the 1990′s, have recently seen declining sales as consumers have become increasingly aware of the negative environmental impacts linked to plastic bottles. As a result, bottled water has been banned from university campuses, national parks, and even entire towns in the United States. Advertising campaigns for tap water have allowed consumers to learn more about the negative impact of bottled water, while at the same time new alternatives such as home filters have made their way into more homes.
The Argument against Bottled Water
Anti-bottled water ads rarely have to do more than simply state the facts about bottled water consumption to be effective. Tap water is anywhere from 500 to 1000 times cheaper than bottled water, while both often come from the exact same source. Bottled water companies will often advertise how pure their product is but consuming tap water is far more environmentally friendly and can be filtered with home water coolers or faucet filters to provide an identical taste to expensive bottled water. The energy expenditure associated with manufacturing and distributing bottled water is high, with 47 million gallons of oil used each year in the United States alone. This is enough to power 100,000 cars for an entire year, and produces around one billion pounds of carbon dioxide.
The use of plastic bottles also contributes to waste in our landfills and debris in our oceans. Although the majority of water bottles are recyclable, only 20% of plastic bottles are actually recycled. The rest are often tossed aside, burdening the environment for hundreds of years as they biodegrade extremely slowly. In developed countries where tap water is regulated, bottled water is no safer or cleaner. It is simply packaged differently.
Alternatives Taking Hold of the Market
As a result of the high financial cost and energy required to produce and distribute bottled water, many people are seeking alternatives. This has led to the development of home filtration systems such as the Bibo or Virgin Pure water dispenser. These designs can be placed on a counter top and easily provide cool, filtered water, at the touch of a button. Other bestselling options include filters which can be attached to the kitchen faucet, and inexpensive filter jugs which offer a portable solution. To avoid plastic and still have water on the run, stainless steel thermoses fit the bill for many consumers.
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