While it may seem daunting to completely remove plastic from your life, an easy way to get started is by ditching plastic water bottles. Instead of buying a case of plastic water bottles each week, you can save money and better the environment when you purchase a reusable water bottle and a water filter. You might be wondering why you need to ditch plastic water bottles if they’re so convenient to use and the water tastes so delicious. We have five great reasons that should convince you to stay away from plastic water bottles. Read on to learn more!
1. Bottled Water Is Just Tap Water
You might think that your bottled water tastes better, but 44 percent of bottled water is actually just municipal tap water that has undergone purification and 56 percent is spring water that has been derived from underground springs.
Psychology shows that we might just think that bottled water tastes better because we expect it to taste better. This article from PsychCentral explains this in more detail.
If you’re spending $7 on a “fancy” bottle of water, you’re probably expecting it to have some health benefits. You might even be expecting it to taste better than a glass of water from the faucet. In reality, you’re really just wasting your money. If you don’t like the taste of your tap water at home, try a water filter!
2. Bottled Water Is Wasteful
You probably already know this, but bottled water is wasteful. The U.S. is the world’s largest consumer of bottled water, and 9.1 billion bottles of water were purchased nationwide in 2011. This is equal to 29.2 gallons of water per person! That’s a lot of money for bottled tap water.
Unfortunately, plastic water bottles also produce a lot of waste. Even though plastic water bottles are 100 percent recyclable, only 27 percent of plastic water bottles are actually recycled. In the U.S. alone, billions of bottles of water end up in the trash each year.
3. Plastic Pollutes Our Oceans And Lakes
Trash covers 40 percent of the ocean’s surface, and 90 percent is plastic. Plastic is not environmentally-friendly, and it even harms animals. Bottles that are not recycled end up in landfills, where they never truly degrade.
Plastic water bottles also end up in oceans where they break down into ever smaller pieces and become ingested by birds and other marine life. Due to plastic in our oceans, one million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals are killed annually.
4. More Water Is Used To Produce Plastic Water Bottles
Not only are plastic water bottles wasteful, but more water is wasted during the creation of plastic water bottles. The amount of water used to produce the bottle can be up to three times higher than the actual amount of water in the bottle.
The total carbon footprint of one 500 ml (16.9 oz) bottle of water is 82.8g of CO₂, which includes the production of the PET bottle, distribution and transportation, the cardboard tray used in packaging, and the energy used by the retailor. Water shipped overseas has an even higher carbon footprint!
5. Reusing Is Best
Even though plastic water bottles are made to be recycled, they rarely are. In fact, enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times! Rather than allowing plastic water bottles to become hazards to marine life and other animals, pledge to ditch plastic water bottles and purchase a reusable water bottle instead.
BPA-free reusable water bottles are inexpensive, and some even come with built-in water filters. You can also purchase a water filter for your home which will also save you money in the long run. There are many different types of water filters to choose from, and some are pricier than others, but there are plenty that are suitable for lower budgets. Either way, you will be spending less than you would if you were purchasing a case of bottled water each week.
When you ditch plastic water bottles, you will be reducing your water footprint. Check out this infographic for more information on reducing your water footprint.
Alexandra Beane writes for www.wheelsforwishes.org covering topics such as recycling, health awareness, and family activities. She holds a BA in Professional Writing and can be found cooking, writing, reading, volunteering, and rescuing animals in her spare time. Alexandra is on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/alexandrabeane.