Good news: recent reports show that American soda consumption is on the decline, but what’s on the rise as soda popularity declines? Americans’ bottled water consumption.
Estimates are as high as this: Americans consume 50 billion bottles of water each year or a whopping nearly 30 gallons per person. This hike in H20 is great for health, but the plastic bottles aren’t very healthy for your wallet, our natural resources or the planet as a whole. Here’s why:
Let’s start with cost. Would you want to pay $7.50 a gallon….for water? When you buy bottled water, the average cost can be as high as $7.50 a gallon. Tap water costs about 2,000 times less, so fill up a reusable water bottle instead. You’ll save money and reduce plastic waste.
People don’t recycle as much as you think. We know we can recycle bottle, but the truth is most plastic water bottles end up in the landfill or littering our communities and waterways. It’s estimated that less than four of every 10 water bottles we use actually ends up in a recycling bin. That’s a lot of plastic waste.
Who says oil and water don’t mix? Just to make the plastic bottles, figures indicate 17 million barrels of crude oil are required, which is enough to fuel one million cars for 12 months. So if you had to choose, would you prefer to fill up your car with gas or let that oil be used to make plastic bottles?
The iffy area of reuse: if you have ever been tempted to reuse a disposable plastic water bottle, use caution as one study indicated high levels of bacteria can occur from repeated reuse. Better bet is to get a stainless steel water bottle intended for repeated reuse. You can wash it like you would your other dishes with no fear of chemicals leaching into the water you’re drinking.
Go forth and drink more tap water.