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so claims Derrick Jackson in today's Boston Globe.  It is not the first time he he has written about the scam, nor is it the first time I have dedicated a Daily Kos diary to one of his op eds.  The occasion of his writing this time can be seen in the first paragraph of this op ed:

WE DON’T MISS the water when the cash runs dry. Bottled water, that is. That refreshing news came recently as Nestle reported nearly a 5 percent drop in bottled water sales in North America and Western Europe. That company bottles water under the familiar names of Poland Spring, Perrier, S. Pellegrino, and Deer Park.

.   Other brands are seeing similar drops.  And the economic news gives Jackson a good excuse to remind us of the cost of bottled water, even as he writes

The sad part is that ending the bottled-water fad took a recession, when common sense should have kicked in long ago.

Let's consider some of the data Jackson offers us.

Most bottled water is simply packaged municiple water.

The Environmental Policy Institute estimated 2 years ago that each gallon of bottled water costs $10/gallon from grounwater to your lips.

Purchasing bottled water is a double hit to the environment
  (1) plastic bottles
  (2) fuel to transport
at a cost four times that of regular gasoline

According to the GAO, energy costs of delivery bottled water in Los Angeles is over 1,000 times that of tap water.

Some will say bottled water is safer than tap water, right?  Except if it is simply tap water, how is that possible?

And as our annual per person consumption has gone from 13.4 gallons in 1997 to 29.3 gallons ten years later, we do not even have good access to health information - the GAO found almost no information on labels about health or water quality, and often incomplete information if one went online to try to obtain it.  

Meanwhile our landfills continue to feel the impact, as 3/4 of the water bottles do not get recycled, but accumulate with the rest of our garbage.

Jackson wonders if people's behavior might change if they understood the costs.  I have to wonder.  Try this some time -  when you see someone with a plastic bottle of water, ask if they might prefer drinking gasoline.  Of course they will think you strange.  Point out to them that the purchase cost per unit of bottled water is several times that of gasoline, ad they will be surprised, yet usually immediately start offering justifications about health and safety.  Point out that usually despite the fancy name they are drinking water taken from municipal sources, and they shrug their shoulders and end the conversation.

As egregious as the profits are for health insurance companies, they pale to the ratio of price to cost of bottled water.  Consider Jackson's penultimate paragraph:

In one of the more outrageous examples of bottled-water scamming, the Merced (Calif.) Sun-Star reported in June how the Safeway supermarket chain turns Merced city water into an enormous profit. "In Safeway’s case,’’ the newspaper reported, "they pay more than $1,000 a month for more than a million gallons of water. The retail cost for that much-purified bottled water at Safeway is just under $3 million. Safeway would not say how much it costs them to produce their water.’’ Yet Safeway spokeswoman Teena Massingill told the Sun-Star, "We are providing a product that did not exist previously.’’

Prior to 1945, we did not have nuclear bombs - mere newness is not always a sufficient justification.  And I chose that comparison deliberately, because currently we may  be doing far more damage to environment with our consumption of bottled water than we are in the production of nuclear bombs, or even in the accumulated waste from generating electricity from nuclear power.  We are wasting fuel to transport, which adds to the CO2 in the atmosphere.  We are adding to trash from the plastic bottles.  And of course we add to C O2 in the energy wasted - yes wasted - in the production of the containers.

Safeway's spokesman did not have the final word in the column.  Nor shall she here.  As I ask you to consider avoiding wherever possible bottled water in plastic bottles, and if you must occasionally, save the bottles and refill them from your own water, as your part to cutting down on the environmental impact, let me offer Jackson's final words:  

Last I heard, water existed before bottles, and before Safeway. Thankfully, consumers are beginning to remember that, too.

How about you?

Peace.

Originally posted to teacherken on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:50 AM PDT.

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  •  today is thde 2nd day for our students (325+ / 0-)
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    Sharoney, doc2, Angie in WA State, Sylv, Sean Robertson, ryeland, Odysseus, Timaeus, GOTV, DelRPCV, TrueBlueMajority, Powered Grace, BigOkie, mattman, RunawayRose, Emerson, Shockwave, meg, Attorney at Arms, x, devtob, grndrush, MarkInSanFran, Foreign Devil, Creosote, shermanesq, TheMomCat, bronte17, brillig, MD patriot, CoolOnion, Mlle Orignalmale, Pithy Cherub, shanikka, mkfarkus, chimpy, JuliaAnn, Ignacio Magaloni, steelman, luku, ClickerMel, Everbody, wader, jdmorg, DustyMathom, SneakySnu, Dube, emmasnacker, oldjohnbrown, Miss Jones, CitizenOfEarth, pat bunny, grannyhelen, BoxerDave, Nina, Damnit Janet, JimWilson, niteskolar, Penny Century, penguins4peace, Sychotic1, rockhound, Tillie630, raster44, fritzrth, bwintx, Panda, Donna in Rome, Noisy Democrat, WV Democrat, side pocket, KayCeSF, tomjones, Wife of Bath, SanDiegoDem, Irish Patti, Josiah Bartlett, carlos the jackal, TexMex, Julie Gulden, Big Tex, G2geek, Fabian, tribalecho, Bluesee, radarlady, 3goldens, Tinfoil Hat, pattyp, franziskaner, SherwoodB, sc kitty, PBen, Simplify, kefauver, citizenx, stitchmd, LNK, Mr X, blue jersey mom, deep, joseph rainmound, fotyc, alisonc, wiscmass, serrano, sodalis, dazed in pa, Lisa Lockwood, JanL, Ekaterin, Jim R, begone, gwilson, MissInformation, CParis, mcronan, Pinko Elephant, myboo, vigilant meerkat, Audri, cliffradz, EthrDemon, Lefty Coaster, tecampbell, MJ via Chicago, plf515, mcmom, MarciaJ720, myrealname, Andy30tx, dirkster42, Clive all hat no horse Rodeo, va dare, means are the ends, airmarc, matx, B Amer, Temmoku, AllanTBG, mariachi mama, DBunn, Thinking Fella, tegrat, Red Sox, One Pissed Off Liberal, timewarp, dotsright, Cronesense, Jaleh, Loudoun County Dem, blue armadillo, desertguy, FWIW, jetskreemr, moosely2006, linkage, Van Buren, Wino, edsbrooklyn, Nespolo, yowsta, Matt Z, greenchiledem, DWG, bnasley, BobTrips, jayden, manwithnoname, snowshoeblue, ubertar, Singing Lizard, vbdietz, Moderation, jhop7, uciguy30, BasharH, Bikemom, rmonroe, jgilhousen, MyBrainWorks, Dem in the heart of Texas, JayC, adrianrf, mconvente, condorcet, JaxDem, Involuntary Exile, Wes Opinion, Mannabass, beltane, alliedoc, kaolin, Lujane, royce, TH Seed, Jake Williams, pickandshovel, envwq, ShempLugosi, mofembot, Gemina13, Abra Crabcakeya, luckylizard, blue mom red town, doppler effect, xysea, lenzy1000, CarolJ, dont think, Nona D Above, dmhlt 66, shortgirl, squarewheel, legendmn, Fiddlegirl, JonBarleycorn, SciMathGuy, 1BQ, Bule Betawi, multilee, greengemini, Discipline28, banjolele, ryan81, Pale Jenova, dark daze, maryabein, CamillesDad1, rini6, DefendOurConstitution, Mercuriousss, elziax, DClark4129, sanglug, Deoliver47, paintitblue, kevinpdx, pruple, Green Karma, Houston Gardener, maxzj05, ArthurPoet, Nonconformist, zenmasterjack, vcthree, Randtntx, Leftcandid, Super Grover, collardgreens, Cleopatra, susan in sc, canuckster, haensgen, NCrissieB, Amber6541, Just Bob, BigVegan, Norbrook, Its the Supreme Court Stupid, ladygreenslippers, rb137, marabout40, KroneckerD, miss SPED, ArtSchmart, fidellio, TheWesternSun, stunzeed, Crabby Abbey, Lost and Found, 2questions, RJP9999, polar bear, melpomene1, pixxer, ItsSimpleSimon, paradise50, Anne933, ebbv, Puddytat, Egalitare, sharonsz, Earth Ling, JRandomPoster, farbuska, roystah, brizzlefoshizzle, Floande, Actbriniel, Belle Ame, Onomastic, bria, gobears2000, SuperBowlXX, SkylarkingTomFoolery, I love OCD, Walk The Plank, Lost Left Coaster, ems97007, implicate order, mdemploi, Arkieboy, princesspat, cusoon, cama2008, trumpeter, marleycat, Go Kid Hugo, dle2GA, danmitch, KVoimakas, felldestroyed, dakinishir, Grandma Susie, jediwashuu, dibsa, lincoln deschain, Miggles, Book of Hearts, caseyaaronsmith, RLMiller, MichaelNY, Remarque, AnnetteK

    and if I look outside our cafeteria, I will see not only the junk food and soda machines, but several huge machines selling bottled water.  Then again, we have few operable water fountains.  Still, for all our recycling efforts (paper, bottles and cans), we do not seem to grasp the damage we do by the consumption of bottled water.  I suppose it is an improvement over the soda full of HFCS or aspertame, but it bothers me.

    What about you>

    do we still have a Republic and a Constitution if our elected officials will not stand up for them on our behalf?

    by teacherken on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:49:52 AM PDT

  •  Not to mention the impact on the aquifer. (10+ / 0-)

    Which is already being depleted at an alarming rate.

    "You can't reason someone out of something they weren't reasoned into." -- Jonathan Swift

    by Wes Opinion on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:04:03 AM PDT

  •  I mostly agree. (20+ / 0-)

    Springoff the Fifth drank a gallon jug of water every day during marching band camp - marching on asphalt in 100° heat and such - but it was the same jug every day, refilled from our tap.  We have several cases of bottled water in the front hallway, but as part of our hurricane supplies.  If we haven't had a storm by November, we start drinking the bottled water and eating the non-perishable food.  There are settings where I favor bottled water, however.  Schools are one, because the alternatives are soda or the disease vectors we call public drinking fountains.

    Good article, good diary, and good morning! :)

  •  I do not buy bottled water (22+ / 0-)

    ...simply because I think it's insane to pay over a dollar for what you can get for free.

  •  I like bottled water (5+ / 0-)

    My muni water tastes bad,and is so hard that it will ruin a teapot or coffee maker.
    I do not buy deionized muni water, but spring water.

    "Chance favors the prepared mind"

    by tlemon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:22:03 AM PDT

  •  tapwater, cola, etc... (9+ / 0-)

    is NOT healthy around the WV area....my dad's thriving urology practice is a testament to that.

    Prediction: Sarah Palin gets a masters degree in political science before 2012, or 2016

    by desiunion on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:25:05 AM PDT

  •  The only bottle water I buy is in a beer (6+ / 0-)

    or a pop.

    It's not "astroturf," it's an orally transmitted form of spongiform encephalopathy.

    by chicago jeff on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:31:24 AM PDT

  •  Evian Spelled Backwards is Naive. (29+ / 0-)

    I'll bet the corporate trash who dreamed that up had a good belly laugh all the way to the bank.  (Enjoy your bisphenol A-contaminated tap water that costs more than gasoline.)

  •  $0.0096 per ounce (0+ / 0-)

    is what I pay for bottled water.

    Somehow, I manage to afford it.

  •  I did notice that in the last couple of times (8+ / 0-)

    I've seen Obama events on TV he'd finally chucked the water bottle and drank from a glass.  

    Personally, I've been convinced that people who need to carry a bottle around were bottle fed as babies and never properly weaned.

    Not going to stick around because I have to write something up about "all hat and no cattle."  Yes, I know it's old hat, but I think a lot of us Democrats never understood what that actually meant.

    How do you tell a predator from a protector? The predator will eat you sooner rather than later.

    by hannah on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:40:57 AM PDT

  •  Fiji brand bottled water (24+ / 0-)

    Obama sips it. Paris Hilton loves it. Mary J. Blige won't sing without it. How did a plastic water bottle, imported from a military dictatorship thousands of miles away, become the epitome of cool?

    from an excellent exposé in this month's Mother Jones magazine

    90% of congressmen & senators give the other 10% a bad name.

    by DFH on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:45:57 AM PDT

    •  It is a great piece (6+ / 0-)

      That takes on the most egregious example of snake oil marketing since... well, maybe since snake oil. Talks about the obvious idiotic environmental cost of shipping water 1000s of miles but goes beyond that politically. Fiji is relying heavily on the income from that bottled water — or rather, all too familiarly, a few people at the top are. The locals don't get to drink it, and must rely on increasingly dirty alternative sources. Author was detained by the local junta hoods who caught her by monitoring outgoing email (all Internet traffic is apparently watched) and was threatened and intimidated not to write anything bad. Obviously, that turned out to be a great incentive. Fiji Water is pawned off by its CEOs (the Resnicks, buddies of one A. Huffington) as being "carbon-negative" through a bogus set of calculations, justifying its useless existence through schemes such as conservation and using a windmill at the plant, none of which alter the fact that they're using vast quantities of oil to ship a product chemically identical to one that the clueless featured American celebrities could get out of their own taps. Sidebar run down why various other bottled water options such as Dasani, Deer Park, and Arrowhead have their own problems.

      My first nickels after getting employed again are reserved for the ACLU, but Mother Jones is a close second. I think their reporting has only gotten better in recent years.

    •  You beat me to it! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Arenosa

      It was an excellent article. Bottled water is such a scam, this particular bottled water is just nuts.

      May we learn to separate that which matters most and that which matters least of all. - Richard S Gilbert

      by brillig on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:24:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yeah but they support Dems, so... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      oldjohnbrown

      If you read the entire Mother Jones article, you'll see that Fiji is owned by a big Democratic supporter who is a close personal pal of Arianna Huffington. My subject line is snark -- never forget that there's bound to be some nonsense on all sides of any political spectrum.

      There's even a tie-in to the new-age anti-science stuff that is always being hyped at the Huff Po. The makers claim that Fiji water has magical vibes that purify your body. And they "Greenwash" the heck out of the product... trying to get you to believe that it's somehow good for the environment to fly that water here from a South Pacific island.

  •  I thought that some bottled water manufacturers (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Malachite, rainmanjr

    add minerals and stuff to the otherwise tap water to make it taste better.

    •  Not only that but many bottled waters are... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cardinal, Orinoco

      indeed not just tap water. I won't buy tap water. But I'll certainly buy something that has the chlorine removed from tap. I go with vapor distilled with minerals added. Tres bien!

      The man who moves a mountain begins by moving away small stones. -Confucius

      by Malachite on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:38:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Most are filtered tap water, sometimes w/softener (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Orinoco

        added to take out minerals.  I've been to bottling plants making the stuff and seen/been told that is all they do.

        Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

        by DefendOurConstitution on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:29:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  If you let tap water sit (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        DefendOurConstitution

        in a pitcher, exposed to the air, for a day or so, the chlorine will evaporate. Is keeping an open pitcher on the kitchen counter such an inconvenience that you'll pay hundreds of dollars a year to avoid it?

        Vapor distilled (ie: removing all the minerals) with minerals added. Gotta be snark.

        "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government is incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

        by Orinoco on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:38:37 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  The transportation costs of these waters (5+ / 0-)

    is obscene. MotherJones has a nice summary of those costs per liter here.

    The uninsured keep dying. Death to AHIP!

    by DWG on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 03:51:56 AM PDT

    •  We need a documnentary. Showing the tap water (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      steelman, DWG

      and all of the processes it goes through before we buy it:

      1. Gets pumped to very high pressures and filtered.
      1. Goes into bottle* that's been washed with more water than it contains.
      1. Gets crated, shrink wrapped and loaded on trucks.
      1. Consumes quite a bit of diesel fuel to get where it's going.
      1. Gets drunk (or not as many bottles get left half empty) and say adios to the bottle*.
      * Of course the bottle's history is much more damaging and even worse:

      a. Gets born from a "shot" of petrochemicals that cost a bundle of energy to distill and transport to bottle factory.

      b. Gets heated up with lots of energy in order to melt and inject into injection molding machine.

      c. Once formed, it gets cooled with a mechanical chiller that uses loads of energy and frequently water in a cooling tower.

      d. Gets washed crated and shipped to bottler.

      e. Gets transported with diesel truck.

      f. After 1-5 above, ends up in landfill. When a plastic bottle enters a landfill, it can take hundreds of years to decay, and it can have a profound environmental impact.

      Boy, just summarizing it like that makes it seem so outrageous!

      Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

      by DefendOurConstitution on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:41:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I've Bought Maybe 10 Bottles in My Life (5+ / 0-)

    only because there was no tap water available at the time I needed to drink water.  It kills me to spend my money on that. In a sane society, it would be illegal or highly taxed to include the true cost of the "product" to our society.  I am old enough to remember when it first came out.  We were stunned that anyone would ever buy it but the wise ones knew that it would only be a matter of time before the advertisers would make it a necessity.  I always say that if they could find a way to bottle air and sell it they would and sadly, people are stupid enough to buy it.

  •  I stopped buying water from the store (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1, ajpuckett, rmonroe, Cleopatra

    a long time ago.  Why lug that heavy package home and pay for what I can get out of the tap for nearly nothing?

    GOP: Grand Obstructionist Party (sore losers too!)

    by BlueInRedCincy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:00:30 AM PDT

  •  We have styrofoam cups (10+ / 0-)

    in our break room at work by our water cooler. Using those cups is not a good solution either. I suppose we should be using paper cups and better yet, our own reusable containers.

    I suppose this is something that I could try and change. (Your post has just successfully nudged me into taking on another task...I knew I shouldn't have looked
    at DK today :-).

  •  The cost estimate (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    rainmanjr

    If a gallon costs $10 to produce, then why doesn't it cost $10 in the store?

    Or do these costs include other items?

    PS, we only use the bottles for convenience - we use them over and over and fill them up with tap water.

    www.tapestryofbronze.com and www.haikudiary.com

    by chloris creator on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:03:35 AM PDT

  •  I'm torn on this one... (5+ / 0-)

    I am often on the go and appreciate the convenience of water in a bottle.  Of course, I refill the bottle for a week or so with tap water. And I never buy either Dasani or Aquafina, from Coke and Pepsi which are just high priced and unregulated municipal tap water.  I also try to avoid the Nestle brands and Fiji water which props up a cruel dictatorship.  But water is certainly an alternative to all the horrible sugar laden soft drinks, Snapples and Vitamin Waters that are sold in schools, supermarkets, convenience stores and rest stops.  Even bottled water is far better than any of these choices, both from a health and environmental point of view.  We should be saving a lot of our venom for these other products.  And we should all be using tap water whenever possible - for all cooking and drinking at home.  That way, we can make sure that tap water will continue to be safe, regulated, affordable and available.

  •  we dumped Poland Springs last month (9+ / 0-)

    by installing a whole house water filter.

    i never liked PS the company. it is NOT a homey Maine company (anymore). when we signed up with PS, there were no fuel surcharges in contracts. we were informed we must begin to pay one around 2 years ago. but i liked the dispenser, so i stayed with the service.

    our monthly payment to PS was around $40.

    last month, i purchased a high-thruput whole house water filter and installed it. the system cost $700, with costs of around $50/year to change the filters. the $ were close enough for me to salvage the diesel fuel the PS truck was wasting coming up the hill. and, of course, i have quality water throughout my house. only the best for my johns.

    •  I you have pets and no blue H2O (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      QuestionAuthority

      your animals approve of filtered water for the toilets. It saves on toilet cleaning as well, if you live in an area like we do, with what is called around here glacier dust. It is suspended rock particles that seem to discover gravity when placed inside toilet bowls. Whole house filter works fine for that.

      Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry. F. Scott Fitzgerald, the Great Gatsby

      by riverlover on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:11:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sigg and BPAs (2+ / 0-)

    SIGG Bottles Now BPA Free. But What Were They Before? This is pretty unbelievable. Anybody want to knock my Brita?

  •  The only bottled water I buy is carbonated. (10+ / 0-)

    I need it for my Tom Collins. Sometimes it gets polluted with scotch.

    -4.38, -7.64 Voyager 1: proof that what goes up never comes down.

    by pat bunny on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:11:21 AM PDT

  •  I keep one bottle (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    oldjohnbrown, Fabian, Orinoco, JBL55

    at my desk at work and I refill it from the fountain several times a day.  I don't see any sense in paying money for something I can get for free.  At home we have a little Brita pitcher we keep in the fridge.  I don't know how much of a filter it is, but it keeps the water nice and cool.

    Even when I lived in Africa, I drank the tap water from the metropolitan water system in the city where I lived.  It tasted like chlorine, but hey, better that than schistomaisis.  :)

    •  When I lived in Africa (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      xysea

      we boiled the water and ran it through a ceramic filter. I accidentally drank some city water and came down with a horrendous case of amoebic dysentery. That was a long time ago, though, before they started chlorinating the water.

      Living in LA now, I'd sure like to get my hands on one of those ceramic water filters. Unlike Brita filters, you can clean the ceramic filters and reuse them when they get clogged with particulates.

      "The problems of incompetent, corrupt, corporatist government is incompetence, corruption and corporatism, not government." Jerome a Paris

      by Orinoco on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:49:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I have always thought that paying money (5+ / 0-)

    for a bottle of water was dumb. I never understood it.

    When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross.

    by rmonroe on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:16:23 AM PDT

    •  Some of us don't drink pop (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Vacationland

      I don't see how my buying a soft drink I don't want, which is basically the same water with some sugar and fake flavoring added, is somehow so superior to buying a bottle of water.  If I am out and thirsty and don't have access to water from a fountain I don't see a thing wrong with buying a bottle of water.  Again, pop is just 98% the same water, with sugar and flavoring added.

      This is our moment. This is our time. President Barack Obama

      by Matilda on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:15:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  key phrase... IF (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Orinoco, paintitblue

        IF one is out of the house and thirsty and without access to drinking fountain or tap, in that circumstance I would say bottled water is no crime. But if you are substituting it for tap water in your own home, I think that is bad.

        •  I drink tap water at home (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          IreGyre

          But I am very very happy that I have the option of buying a bottle of water when I am out of the house.  I don't see it as some great sin, like many people here seem to.  

          This is our moment. This is our time. President Barack Obama

          by Matilda on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:00:59 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I don't drink Soda (pop) (0+ / 0-)

        and I don't buy bottled water.  They both suck.

        Repubs - the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public. (Bill Maher)

        by Sychotic1 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:21:09 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Still it is kind of nice to be able to buy a (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ajpuckett, IreGyre, BigVegan

    bottle of water instead of a bottle of soda pop when you are on the go and forgot your water from home.

    I like a filter for water at home.

    FOX called, they want the 20th Century back.

    by 88kathy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:19:26 AM PDT

  •  The tap water where I work is brown. (7+ / 0-)

    Yeah, it's a yellowish-orangeish brown. It's city water, but the landlady refuses to check the pipes, so it's only good for flushing toilets and washing hands (and hoping they don't get dirtier than before washing). The water than flows along the hallway floors from the building's air conditioning (which she also won't fix) is cleaner than the tap water.

    We drink Highbridge Springs water from a cooler (uses recyclable 5-gal jugs). Truth be known, we wouldn't care if it was municipal tap water - as long as it's not the crud that comes out of the building's taps.

    Other than that, the only time I've had bottled water in the last 5 years or so was when a doctor's office handed me a bottle because they got tired of refilling a little paper cup. And I ain't dead yet!

    In 1971, Don McLean wrote about the day the music died. On 17 July 2009, the news died. RIP Walter Cronkite.

    by SciMathGuy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:20:52 AM PDT

    •  Very good point. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SciMathGuy

      The lead, or copper, that leaches out of our pipes and into our water is not a good addition.

      "The only thing to fear is tomorrows. I don't live for tomorrows. They're no fun." - Denny Crane

      by rainmanjr on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:35:43 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  A filter like Brita will fix that... (0+ / 0-)

        ...cheaper than bottled water, and using a lot less plastic.

        We'd use filters at work, but we have to have drinking water available for all our students. A tap filter won't fit in the sinks (only sinks are in the bathrooms), and a pitcher of water for pouring isn't a great idea with so many hands and mouths wanting it. We're stuck with bottled water, but at least the jugs are sanitized and reused by the company.

        In 1971, Don McLean wrote about the day the music died. On 17 July 2009, the news died. RIP Walter Cronkite.

        by SciMathGuy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:06:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Why the uproar about water? Why not Coke, Dr. Pep (7+ / 0-)

    Why the uproar about water?

    Granted, bottled water:

    1. wastes resources,
    1. is insanely overpriced considering the ingredients

    But Coke, Dr. Pepper, Mountain Dew, and a hundred other soda (and juice-flavored drink) brands:

    1. waste resources,
    1. are insanely overpriced considering the ingredients,
    1. develop bad nutrition habits in children,
    1. contribute to the epidemic of obesity,
    1. contribute to the epidemic of malnutrition,
    1. by advertising heavily and saturating the minimarkets, encourage the poor to waste what little money they have
  •  Visualing the Numbers (9+ / 0-)

    The artist Chris Jordan has helped people visualize numbers that can be so large their concept is hard to grasp in his "Running the Numbers - An American Self-Portrait"

    Just a taste ...

    •  His work is impressive and enlightening. I wish (3+ / 0-)

      more people were exposed to his photos. Thanks for your post!

      Peace - Is it really too much to work for?

      by BigVegan on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:33:46 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Where can I find this slide show? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TrueBlueMajority, dmhlt 66

      This is the first time I've seen his work or heard of him and would love to share this slide show with friends but doing a google search, I couldn't find it. I've bookmarked his web site and hope to see his work in person one day, so thanks for sharing!

      •  Well, I put the slideshow together myself at (0+ / 0-)

        Photobucket - and their slideshows are formatted as flash.  About the only way to view it would be to

        [1] Click on my name [dmhlt 66] in the lower left of my Comment - that will open my DKos profile

        [2] Click the "Comments" tab at the top menu bar (it's between "Diary" and "Ratings")

        [3] Click the "Visualizing the Numbers" comment

        [4] Then copy the URL for that Comment

        You'll get the slideshow - but you'll also get the comment and its thread - but I'm not sure how else to do it.

  •  Funny/sad story (5+ / 0-)

    I worked at a very large hospital.  There were soft drink machines scattered around in various waiting rooms.  One night one of my co-workers left the lab for awhile and came back very disgusted.  She said "I walked all over the hospital and couldn't find a single machine that sold bottled water!"  I wonder how many drinking fountains she passed while she searched.

    •  Who would want to drink from a hospital (0+ / 0-)

      water fountain?

      Yuck.

      "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

      by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:14:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Me. (0+ / 0-)

        The water in hospital drinking fountains where I worked was tested periodically for contaminants.  Hospitals are extremely saftety-conscious.

        •  It's not the water. (0+ / 0-)

          It's the sick people and employees who have been exposed to sick people.

          I have a whole family of medical professionals of all levels, from surgical tech to doctor. None of them would drink out of a hospital fountain, not even in the employees lounge, unless they were dying of thirst.

          Even then, they'd probably swab it with betadine or alcohol or something similar first.

          "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

          by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:57:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I went back to tap water... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sephius1, Night Train

    ...a year and a half ago; well water at home.  No problemo.

    "Well, only two kinds of people wear red shoes; and you ain't no spanish dancer." -- Miguel Ferrer, "In the Groove" (Tales From the Crypt)

    by dov12348 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:36:26 AM PDT

    •  Our well water rocks. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sephius1, dov12348

      Can't wash cars with it, though.  Lots of calcium and other stuff in it, and the whole-house filter doesn't filter the hose water.  So we have one of those Mr. Clean systems to rinse cars with, which is basically the same type of filter system one might use to filter drinking water.  While that sounds slightly off-topic, it really isn't.  If your water's taste is off, do the same thing Coca-Cola does and filter the damn water.  A Brita or Pur water filter cartridge costs something like nine bucks and lasts two months or so.

      Half-baked ideas for sale - cheap!

      by Steaming Pile on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:58:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Selling water right by the river (3+ / 0-)

    The Essence of Capitalism.

    Torture good, Healthcare bad, Marijuana evil.
    Doc in the Twitterverse

    by xxdr zombiexx on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:39:12 AM PDT

  •  Switched to Brita and Sigg bottles last year (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sephius1

    we finally threw the plastic bottles away.

    BUT, they are convenient and it was easier!

  •  Tap water tastes like chlorine! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    CSPAN Junkie, IreGyre

    Yuk! :)

    The man who moves a mountain begins by moving away small stones. -Confucius

    by Malachite on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:39:38 AM PDT

    •  Britta pitcher (7+ / 0-)

      You can get a small one for about $8.  Removes chlorine (and other yucky stuff).  My tap water tastes and smells like swamp, seriously--but run it through the Britta and it tastes great.  

    •  It's the fluoride you have to worry about (6+ / 0-)

      Protect the essence of your purity!

      Actually, IMHO there are some situations where local water is so rank that even filtration fails, and bottled water becomes a justifiable expense. But the vast majority of us are lucky enough to live in areas with potable water that are also monitored by the DEP or local authorities for not just chemicals but biologicals like giardia. There's somebody local to grab and hold accountable (for the safety, not the taste!), which isn't something you can easily do with most transnational corporations.

      •  LOL (4+ / 0-)

        I meant "purity of essence!"  POE, EOP, OEP...

      •  It's a damn shame you gotta disclaim stuff. (4+ / 0-)

        From SUVs to bottled water, there is always one guy who comes on here with his or her tale of woe that makes these things necessary...for them.  They either do not realize or do not care that WE ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT THEM.  So we either reflexively put in disclaimers when talking about certain high-footprint activities/consumer items/etc., or endure an endless procession of wiseguys with their exceptions.

        I should put a list of these disclaimers on a diary just so I can link to it and save us all time and keystrokes.

        Half-baked ideas for sale - cheap!

        by Steaming Pile on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:03:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  True, but people will post them anyway. (0+ / 0-)

          It's web-space, no shortage of it, so forget about their disclaimers.  Scroll past them if they bother you.

          "The only thing to fear is tomorrows. I don't live for tomorrows. They're no fun." - Denny Crane

          by rainmanjr on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:41:55 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Some folks just don't get what "exception" means. (0+ / 0-)

          If 85% of people in a given congressional district vote for the right-wing candidate, and I say "Holy crap, what a bunch of wingnuts live in that district!" - you can always, always, always expect someone here to post a comment saying, "Hey, I live in that district! Stop bashing my hometown! I didn't vote for the wingnut! Do you view me as a wingnut voter too?"

          (No, idiot - I view you as an exception, because that's obviously what you are.)

          There are always exceptions. Anyone who has a functioning brain, and can add and subtract, knows that. It shouldn't have to be belabored.

          Medicare for everyone.

          by Night Train on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:09:46 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  So what is the message? Either or? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          zett

          If you ran things or had the power would you ban all bottled water on environmental grounds? there are grounds for that... And the pile-on me too tap-water profiteers' sales are down? well that's good too...

          But the diary does suggest the all or nothing meme:  and that it is better to not have bottled water ... and (all) people who buy bottled water are ALL dupes of a gigantic scam... or words to that effect... Some are dupes and in an unregulated market scammers can sell anything they want and say anything about it...

          So the sub-text that non buyers are wise and clever and buyers are shallow fad swallowers allows bottled water belittlers to vent on one of their personal private annoyances... bottled water bugs them and they cannot imagine ANY reason for it to exist... ok fine... but there is a reasonable market for some water from somewhere else that is not just bottled tap water...

          And as the user of very soft water sourced from a spring in France... (I live in Europe) for personal health reasons... I would still prefer that I could just drink tap water or even filtered but I can't... but most tap water makes me gag and I don't feel as well if I'm on it for more than a day or two... unless I use a filter and that just makes it bearable... yes I'm different... over many years... I have just had to live with the fact that I don't get along with moderate to very hard water... and need very low sodium as well... so reverse osmosis systems are not good either...

          If I could afford it I would get an electric water distiller and that would solve the whole problem... no more filters no plastic bottles and the trace chemicals that leach out of them.

          Most diatribes against bottled water leave out why bottled water became popular in Europe originally (bad water supplies) plus the mixed mostly malarkey health stuff about very mineralized water from spas that rich people and doctors seemed to believe. So it got it's start from health myths and the conspicuous consumption trendiness of being well off enough to drink it as well as being able to avoid unsafe tap water (the old advice to American tourists long ago was "Don't drink the water" (unless you like getting the runs) ... but along with that there were people who only drank the very soft water from high elevation springs because they found their health improved...

          My grandfather was one of those sorts... (family from Luxemburg) he drove around the deserts and mountains around L.A. in the 1920's, 30's and 40's going to various springs he knew about and would fill up bottles to take back home for drinking water. And he could do a blind taste test and tell you which was from which spring... I did not know this till later... we did not see him much while I was a kid but I found over the years living in many countries that I could drink soft water with no problem no matter where it was from tap or bottle or spring but harder water no matter the source yuck... So it must be genetic. The number of genes involved with or linked to just the transit of potassium and sodium in and out of cells is apparently very complex and people have a wide variety of mineral metabolisms as a result... something that is not very well understood even today...##

          So until that is better understood there are a lot of people grasping and straws including bottled water. Some of that does help some people... some imagine it does or hope it does. In the meantime if people are a bit better informed and the industry has to label their products properly we each have to deal with what is out there as best we can.

          NYC water... (assuming the pipes near your crumbling walk up don't mess it up) is very good... from granite mountain areas upstate...

          San Francisco/Berkeley used to be very good. At the expense of wrecking the Hetch Hetchy valley when they dammed the river there (the next major one north of Yosemite) again really good municipal water... till they started mixing it with Sacramento river water and local aquifers...

          LA water? ... blech... I had to get the 10 gallon bottles deliverd from Sparkletts... cheaper than teeny bottled water...

          London? not that great.. Stay with the Volvic.
          Dublin? depends what side of town you are on... Granite mountain resevoir supplies the southside... good... aquifer and other on the north and out in the flatlands.. blech.

          So not all bottled water is a waste... but yes, the whole water business is out of control... too many people who don't need it in bottles wasting money on the same stuff they could get from a tap and too many companies selling an idea as a way to get people to spend extra money...

          Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

          by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:02:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  It has limited uses. (2+ / 0-)

    I do outreach work with the homeless, and I take donated bottled water with me for them.
    I also keep a gallon bottle of water (usually less than 99 cents) in case my apartment loses water pressure, This way I can at least make coffee.

    St. Ronnie was an asshole.

    by manwithnoname on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 04:47:43 AM PDT

  •  Poland Spring blows away tap water (0+ / 0-)

    I never used to care about what water I drank, until I discovered poland springs.

    We would put  a glass of tap water and poland spring in the fridge to get them to the same temperature and do blind taste tests with my wife and EVERY time we could tell which was the Poland Spring water.

    I agree it is not as cheap as tap water but it tastes 10 times better even when run through a filter.

    We need to be responsible for the waste it creates and recylce. Should be the law.

    •  We need not to direct resources towards the (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rainmanjr, condorcet, Night Train

      "productino" of bottled water.

      The waste (1000x the energy when compared to municipal water) is not only in the plastic bottles.  Think about the transfer of resources away from municipal systems into corporations who sell bottled water.  This is really a shift towards privitization much like the move away from a universal public school education and the fight against universal health care.

      I see this as one of the several basic requirements of social welfare ... clean water, a good education, health care.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:56:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Clean Water yes high end water no (0+ / 0-)

        Every human has a right to clean water and they should have it at little or no cost especially if they can not afford it.

        That said food is a basic item as well but I would have issues if the soup kitchens and food pantrys were serving lobster dinners and micro brews.

        I consider drinking Poland Spring a luxury. If push came to shove I could drink my tap water. I just dont like to.

        •  I would respectfully suggest that push has come (0+ / 0-)

          to shove WRT the state of our planet and it's ability to sustain healthy life (human included) over the longer haul.

          To my mind we need to re-orient our thinking around the central premise of doing things that create a dynamic equilibrium in the biosphere while reducing high entropy activities.

          A particulary egregious example of high entropy living is the consumption of bottled water due to the components required and energy consumed:

          1. Manufacturing the bottle (energy used-->electricity from oil, coal, nuke, etc.)
          1. Composition of the bottle (mining/drilling--> plastic/oil, glass/sand + energy used)
          1. Filling the bottle (energy used--->electricity from oil, coal, nuke, etc.)
          1. Distributing the bottle (energy used--->likely gasoline/trucks or diesel/trains or ships for overseas)
          1. Storing and/or cooling the bottle (energy used---> electricity from various sources)
          1. Bottle into solid waste (dump) or recycled (energy used--->variety)

          It is relatively easy to compare the amount of entropy created in an equal amount of bottled H2O v. that delivered in a municipal water system (via the tap).  Though energy and resources are used in the muni system the amount/volume of H2O is a very small fraction of that for bottled water.  I think in this case the choice is rather stark.

          No quarter. No surrender.

          by hegemony57 on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 09:21:18 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Poland Springs is groundwater from Fryeburg (0+ / 0-)

      and has caused the local comunity to be 'out of water' from Wikipedia:

      In 2004, the town's water stopped temporarily because of a pump failure, but Poland Spring's operations were able to continue.

      In June 2003, Poland Spring was sued for false advertising in a class action lawsuit charging that their water that supposedly comes from springs, is in fact heavily treated common ground water.[8] The suit also states, hydro-geologists hired by Nestlé found that another current source for Poland Spring water near the original site stands over a former trash and refuse dump, and below an illegal disposal site where human sewage was sprayed as fertilizer for many years.[8] The suit was settled in September 2003, with the company not admitting to the allegations, but agreeing to pay $10 million in charity donations and discounts over the next 5 years.[9] Nestlé continues to sell the same Maine water under the Poland Springs name.

      We're all one heartbeat away from Forever. kasandra.us

      by KS Rose on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:54:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Does the diarist mean to imply it is (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Matilda

    healthier and cheaper and better for the environment for people to consume eight-, twelve-, sixteen-, or twenty-ounce sugar sodas or similar drinks, over bottled water?

    •  No, I think the diarist means to imply it is (7+ / 0-)

      healthier and cheaper and better for the environment for people to consume tap water.

      You're trying to set up a false choice.

      Medicare for everyone.

      by Night Train on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:27:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Suppose the case where tap water is not available (0+ / 0-)

        What is available is bottled water and some other liquid drinks. What then?

        •  Then you aren't planning well (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Night Train

          I don't buy either and I have no problem meeting my liquid requirements.

          Repubs - the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public. (Bill Maher)

          by Sychotic1 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:22:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  You're missing the point (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            oldjohnbrown

            This is speculative, but, a good amount of bottled water use isn't in lieu of tap or filtered water at home.  It is in lieu of getting a soda at a gas station or coffee shop.

            It's good to raise awaeress to try to encourage people to cut back but don't expect people to always carry around a camelback everywhere they go.

            Basically, if we can get an enviromentally concious person to stop buying bottled water at the grocery store, that is a win.  If we can get people buying refrigerator packs of Mountain Dew to switch to bottled water, that is a win as well.

            •  Up until about a decade ago (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Loquatrix, condorcet, Night Train

              People did just fine without bottled water.  I cannot drink soda, so when I go someplace I tend to order tea or coffee, but whatever.  People today seem to expect everything to come packaged and think nothing of throwing away what is left at the end.

              Such mental and physical laziness is just eyerollingly appalling.

              Repubs - the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public. (Bill Maher)

              by Sychotic1 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:39:23 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Carrying a plastic bottle of water with you (5+ / 0-)

                everywhere you go is a very recent fad.

                Seriously, women's handbags now come with a special pocket to hold your water bottle.  This was simply not the case 10 years ago.

                It should be noticeable to everyone here that carrying a plastic bottle of water with you everywhere you go is a product craze that is very emblematic of the Bush Years economy -- sell something people can basically get "for free;" create a product out of thin air and with massively expensive publicity campaigns, convince people they must have it.

                It's Big Corporations' way of making people pay to drink water if they're not going to pay to drink soda.  Pepsi and friends, who own all these water companies, are clever like that.

                I mean, it's good that people are drinking water, obviously.  But the plastic, all the plastic....!!!!

              •  My read on history is... (0+ / 0-)

                garbage is not an invention of the twentieth century. Ask any archeologist.

                People today seem to expect everything to come packaged and think nothing of throwing away what is left at the end.

                People today are no different from yesterday. There is just more of them and more of them are more wealthy.

                •  Why is this is relevant? (0+ / 0-)

                  Unless you have proof positive that the ancient Babylonians used plastic water bottles, pesticides in degradable containers, and disposable diapers, I'd say there is a world of difference between today's garbage and yesterday's--regardless of the size of populations and the amount of their wealth.    

        •  Then people should DIE OF THIRST, obviously. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Boris Godunov, condorcet, codairem, Knarfc

          Obviously, the diarist means to imply not only that people should drink soda instead of water, but also that, in the absence of any running water at all, it is preferable that people die of thirst than be allowed to have bottled water.

          Thank goodness you're here with your common sense to mop up all these small details, otherwise teacherken might have got away with pulling the wool over our eyes!!!!

  •  There's an Italian restaurant in my neighborhood (5+ / 0-)

    whose preferred policy is not to serve tap water (in New York City, which actually has award-winning tap water; I kid you not). If you ask for water, they'll offer you mineral water, still or sparkling, at such-and-such-a price per bottle.

    It's been sort of assumed that they'd rather sell wine or Pellegrino than give away tap water; various people have commented on it in the Zagat Guide and the New York Times reviews of the place. If you make enough of a fuss they'll give you tap water eventually.

    The one time I had a chance to actually go there, I went with a friend who had recently come back from a trip to Italy, and when I mentioned the local furor over the restaurant's water policy, he seemed to feel that this might be a case of preferring to sell a product than give one away, but more likely, in his experience, simply what Italian restaurants all over Italy do.

    At home, I drink tap water more than any other beverage (sometimes with ground coffee beans steeped in it); this has especially been the case since we moved from the fifth floor of our apartment building down to the first floor; the water tastes better, possible due to fewer pipes to travel through?

    •  NYC water, straight from upstate NY! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      adamantius, rainmanjr

      Comes right through us, here in Westchester & I believe that NYC water is the best in the country.  I believe a  lot of restaurants don't just bring out water any longer, I think that started a long time ago.  Speaking of NYC, we're taking our kids to see Jersey Boys tonight, Oh, what a night!

      I like the idea of seeping in the coffee beans, I will try that!

      •  Restaurants were told to stop serving water (0+ / 0-)

        In the 90s when I worked in restaurants, there were several times when drought policies mandated that we stop serving water to customers except on request. So busboys stopped putting a water glass in front of every diner automatically, but did so if asked. Probably saved a lot of water that way. And probably a lot of restaurants stuck with that policy.

        •  Especially since they can now sell Poland Spring. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          stef

          And make a few extra bucks per customer on something they used to give away for free.

          Seriously, how much water did restaurants "waste" on customers before somebody came up with the brilliant idea of withholding it?  Surely the dishwashers use at least 100 times that much doing the dishes.

          Half-baked ideas for sale - cheap!

          by Steaming Pile on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:07:01 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe because... (4+ / 0-)

    Some will say bottled water is safer than tap water, right?  Except if it is simply tap water, how is that possible?

    ...our city water runs through really really old LEAD PIPES, right up inside our building, before it finally turns copper.

    So we gamble that MAYBE the municipal water (if that's what our spring water really is) does not come through lead pipes, or at least the taps at the bottled water company are running so fast & continuously that the lead is not an issue.

    We don't actually know the water is safer, but we think it is worth the cash for the possibility of safer H20.

    "I never asked you to trust the government...No one should ever trust the government, people should use their rights as citizens." -- Barney Frank, 2009

    by rdbaker43 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:00:16 AM PDT

    •  All the tap water cheerleaders (5+ / 0-)

      ...should take a moment to draw a glass from their faucets and look at it closely under a little magnification (or no magnification if their eyes are good) and observe the macroscopic bits of flotsam and jetsam floating around in it.

      Even the bottled water from municipal supplies usually goes through a filtration process.

      Also, consider that whenever there's a disturbance in the city water mains, the water turns brown and drinking advisories go out. When the brown fades to a level not so noticeable, the spigots are opened again. And why not, since chlorine serves as the cure-all backstop for anything really nasty other than rust particles, etc.

    •  Your city is required by law (5+ / 0-)

      To annually report to you whether its water meets Safe Drinking Water Act maximum contaminant levels and -- for lead and copper-- action levels.

      Call and ask about it rather than wonder.

      •  Yeah... and who is in charge of that.. (0+ / 0-)

        and who relaxed the standards or leaves some things out or looks the other way or avoids testing at certain times or schedules the tests when they arrange things so that they will pass.

        After 8 years of Bush EPA and lots of Republicans in local governments there still are standards (fortunately) but the privatization of water supplies and the easy going EPA oversight has not left us safer...

        Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

        by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:11:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Considering it's a felony (0+ / 0-)

          Someone would have to have pretty strong motives to do that.  Not that it hasn't been tried -- I've seen reports of municipal water managers being accused of that -- but my dealings with water system managers  over the past quarter century has taught me that the vast majority are honest people who take their responsibilities to the public very seriously.

    •  That's a codes violation. (0+ / 0-)

      I'd complain about that.  Loudly.

      Half-baked ideas for sale - cheap!

      by Steaming Pile on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:08:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  It's thought Romans became crazy because of... (0+ / 0-)

      drinking from lead mugs.  The lead leached and, eventually, caused brain problems.  That's why they began making very bad decisions and lost their empire.  That's what some archeoligsts/physicions think and it makes sense to me.  British did the same thing.

      "The only thing to fear is tomorrows. I don't live for tomorrows. They're no fun." - Denny Crane

      by rainmanjr on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:50:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nothing beats New York tap! (5+ / 0-)

    Any bottled water tastes flat and plasticky compared to the champagne that flows out of NYC's faucets. For years I've filled a Nalgene bottle with water from my own kitchen faucet and taken it with me rather than buy bottled water. I've always marvelled at how bottled water companies have conned people into paying for something that falls freely from the sky.

    In a minute there is time for decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.

    by Greek Goddess on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:00:23 AM PDT

  •  Finally! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ajpuckett, IreGyre

    Now, I will admit that I keep two, 24-pack of bottled water in my house.  It is, however, for the "emergency" stash.  On a daily basis, we use sports bottles and refill them.

    I hope bottled water goes back to what it always should have been:  an emergency water storage facility, not a 3x a day trash habit!

    •  They are magicians and they rigged the test... (0+ / 0-)

      "The Truth about Penn & Tellers water taste test"

      I would have them repeat it in a city of MY choice with MY choice(s) of bottled water and then see if the results of the taste tests are the same...

      They have good points overall but they set things up like a Rasmussen poll... no surprise at the results... kind of pre-ordained...

      Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

      by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:16:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of course, (0+ / 0-)

        They themselves admitted in this clip (4:15)that their poll was not scientific. It was just to make the point that it is mostley the image rather than the real quality. After all - these people were NY residents, yet they still claim that bottled water is better than their own tap water.
        That said, even if there is some aftertaste to the water (like we have here in Rockville, MD) it comes mostly from over-chlorination of the water, nothing that a simple cheap active carbon filter can not solve.
        However, note that the restaurant part was filmed in LA.
        Agua-Del-Culo indeed.
        LMAO.

        •  True... the image dominates choice. (0+ / 0-)

          So while I accept their overall intent
          and that their deception was for a good cause as well as entertainment... The message probably went over well with those of the same mind, like preaching to the choir and probably did not change too many minds among fans of the bottled stuff.... (plus I heard that they were a bit right wing/libertarian... say it ain't so...)

          Rockville... I lived down in Bethesda for many years... a while back... went to MC up in Rockville for a few years...

          and I agree, DC area water... not good... big blech factor.

          Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

          by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:10:11 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  To be fair... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    IreGyre, Jampacked

    The brands listed in your piece are all from natural springs, not muni water. for that you have to look at PepsiCo, who markets Aquafina, or Coke's Dasani, both of which are "mined" from muni water.
    when I buy water, it's always from a spring and not muni water. And I recycle everything.
    I realize, however, that plastic bottles are a problem, as are plastic bags and other crap we mass produce.
    But we also have to make more of an effort at recycling. I'm amazed at how much doesn't get recycled, how many people simply throw stuff in the trash, or how many folks litter.
    We need to do a better job.

    Electing conservatives is like hiring a carpenter who thinks hammers are evil.

    by MA Liberal on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:08:10 AM PDT

  •  Teena Massingill (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Doodlespook, ShempLugosi

    What a douche.

    Yet Safeway spokeswoman Teena Massingill told the Sun-Star, "We are providing a product that did not exist previously.’’

    ...the do-dah man once told me you've got to play your hand Sometimes your cards ain't worth a dime, if you don't lay 'em down.

    by rambler american on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:09:27 AM PDT

  •  Australia to become bottled-water free zone? (3+ / 0-)

    An Australian country town, Bundanoon, has voted at a community hall meeting to overwhelmingly support a proposal that it become Australia’s (if not the world’s) first bottled water free town.

    And the news seems to have spurred on the Australian state of New South Wales (NSW) to announce a ban on bottled water from all state offices and agencies.

    http://www.treehugger.com/...

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/...

    If New South Wales follows that route about 1/4 of Australia will soon have a ban.

    Here we are now Entertain us I feel stupid and contagious

    by Scarce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:09:32 AM PDT

  •  I saw this scam in Texas in the early 90s (6+ / 0-)

    I saw gallon jugs labeled "Drinking Water" on supermarket shelves.

    The fine print said

    "Source:  San Antonio municipal water supply".

  •  I truly believe the bottle water was a great (0+ / 0-)

    sub for people who did not want the only drink choice in a "to go" option to be soda or sugar drinks.

    We still had those drinks with plastic and cans - and no one is going crazy about the them.

    In my opinion it is about convenience and a non crap drink - not about bottled water per se.   So figure out a way to keep convenience in the solution and people will change.

    Example - We are having an event with 200 people outside - You need to provide a drink source - it is going to be some sort of plastic regardless - either plastic cups or plastic bottles - until we can figure out a way to have liquid @ certain times without plastic then nothing will change.

    Takin it to the streets....Doobie Brothers

    by totallynext on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:12:39 AM PDT

    •  At outdoor festivals in Germany (7+ / 0-)

      you pay a deposit on glass or plastic mug or tumbler (usually has some writing on it - beer name or town festival name) and you get it re-filled the whole time you're there.  At the end, you can keep it or turn it in to get your deposit back.  Seems to work pretty well.  I've been to huge festivals and there's almost no plastic waste on the ground at the end.  Plenty of paper that needs to be collected, but little or no plastic.

  •  latest water scam (3+ / 0-)

    They (Dasani, Aquafina, etc)take tap water, the distill it to remove everything and all taste (ever try distilled water?  It tastes awful). Then they put minerals back in to "improve" the taste.

    The people who buy it mainly think it is "spring water".

    •  Actually if the minerals put back (0+ / 0-)

      are balanced in the right proportions the water would be better and healthier than most other sources and taste right too. Good for babies, and people with Kidney problems, (low sodium good for High blood pressure...)

      Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

      by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:16 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  *Gulp* (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jampacked

    Ah! Peckham spring water, so refreshing!

  •  Agreed, except for those with non-muni tap water (4+ / 0-)

    ...like my family. We don't exactly live "off the grid", but our 30 year old home uses a septic system and well for plumbing and water supply. Our well is contaminated with concentrated minerals, making its water taste quite nasty. It's fine for cooking, cleaning and topping off the backyard pool, but otherwise, not for drinking. We could likely try drilling to another source, but the cost for drilling a new well is several thousand dollars, and there's no guarantee a new well would have water with different characteristics (wells are judged to be a success based on flow, not water quality).

    Thus, we get bottled water in 5 gallon bottles, 30-35 gallons worth a month, from a local distributor (http://www.crystalrock.com if you're curious). It fills a gap for us without taking a bit hit in the wallet for the new well.

    •  That's responsible use of bottled water! (0+ / 0-)

      Many homes in the Mountain West have to have bottled water for this very reason.

      "No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government. Always hopeful yet discontent, he knows changes aren't permanent. But change is." -Neil Peart

      by Boisepoet on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:05:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You can also filter your tap water to make it (0+ / 0-)

      taste more palatable ... that's what we do with our minerally tasting well water.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:44:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No dice (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        IreGyre

        We've tried various filters, tap-mounted and pitchers, and so far, no dice. The water's already running through a softener, so the mix of brine and any residual minerals seems to defeat them. Further, the cost of the filters is cost-competitive with the water and coolers. It works out fine though.

        •  If that is the only solution then perhaps you (0+ / 0-)

          may not have other good options.

          If not then it's really too bad because even large scale bottled water is hugely innefficient and costly (from a carbon footprint and sustainability standard) as the energy used to transport is a large multiple over a well (pump and pipes) or municipal water system (pipes and gravity).

          No quarter. No surrender.

          by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:14:09 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I use a britta water pitcher at home, filled from (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ajpuckett, Dartagnan

    the tap. I use a plastic bottle at work, that I refill from the old fashioned water fountain on the wall.

  •  I have no plans to give my bottled water up (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cardinal, oldjohnbrown

    It is labeled as spring water (of course the company could be lying about it).  

    It comes in recycled jugs (these things look so beat up that there is no way they are new)

    It tastes 10X better than the water from my tap

    Since I've had it delivered, I am drinking hardly any soda, fake juice, etc.  Which must be just as bad for the environment if not worse.  And certainly the chemicals in those drinks can't be healthier than water.

    I don't go so far as to cook with it as I know some people do, but I prefer that my family drinks spring water vs. all alternatives.  So even being out of work, I have not cut this item.

    "Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one." - Friedrich Nietzsche

    by ActivatedbyBush on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:18:13 AM PDT

  •  I have been refilling bottles with tap water (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    condorcet

    for years now. I stick them in the fridge and they taste just the same as any bottled water.

    One kossack shared a tip to let the water stand for an hour before capping the bottle. The clorine gas escapes which improves the taste.

    Q: What do you call 500 Congress-slugs at the bottom of the ocean? A: Divine intervention. (with apologies to the couple dozen honest ones.)

    by CitizenOfEarth on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:19:46 AM PDT

  •  Don't refill plastic water bottles (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ajpuckett, phillyPete, jerseyite

    ...unless they are the kind that are made for re-use (the BPA-free re-usable water bottles or, better yet, ditch plastic and go stainless steel).  You can't properly wash them, and they will quickly grow all sorts of nasty bacteria.  

    •  Is this true? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ALifeLessFrightening

      I'd like to know the science behind this. Where'd you hear this?  

      I get paranoid about reusing my plastic bottled water bottles after a couple weeks. Mostly because of the thought of bacteria, not so much the chemicals in the plastic. Anyway, I'd like to learn more.

      •  Just think about it (0+ / 0-)

        Every time you drink, you leave a little saliva and other stuff from your mouth--food particles and whatnot.  It creates a ripe environment to grow all kinds of bad bacteria. In your body, bad bacteria is offset by good bacteria, and we have all sorts of functions/good bacteria/enzymes, etc., to digest food and take care of the bad bugs.  Not the same environment in your water bottle...

        I don't remember where I heard this.  If I come across a link that appears to use sound and decent science, I'll come back and post a reply with a link.  

    •  Yes and also... the more they age and get kinks (0+ / 0-)

      the more plastic residues they release and the softer the water in the bottle the more gets dissolved in it. The PET plastic bottles

      Polyethylene terephthalate (sometimes written poly(ethylene terephthalate)), commonly abbreviated PET, PETE, or the obsolete PETP or PET-P), is a thermoplastic polymer resin of the polyester family and is used in synthetic fibers; beverage, food and other liquid containers

      are safe for one use and maybe a second or third if undamaged but acetylaldehyde and antimony trioxide leach out more and more over time so it is best to avoid too much reuse of the disposable bottles.

      Degradation

      PET is subject to various types of degradations during processing. The main degradations that can occur are hydrolytic, thermal and probably most important thermal oxidation. When PET degrades, several things happen: discoloration, chain scissions resulting in reduced molecular weight, formation of acetaldehyde......
      Acetaldehyde is normally a colorless, volatile substance with a fruity smell. It forms naturally in fruit, but it can cause an off-taste in bottled water. Acetaldehyde forms in PET through the "abuse" of the material. High temperatures (PET decomposes above 300 °C or 570 °F), high pressures, .........
      When acetaldehyde is produced, some of it remains dissolved in the walls of a container and then diffuses into the product stored inside, altering the taste and aroma

      Acetylaldehyde
      is popularly known as a chemical that causes hangovers...

      *is a significant constituent of tobacco smoke. It has been demonstrated to have a synergistic effect with nicotine, increasing the onset and tenacity of addiction to cigarette smoking, particularly in adolescents....

      *is toxic when applied externally for prolonged periods, an irritant, and a probable carcinogen. In addition, acetaldehyde is damaging to DNA and causes abnormal muscle development as it binds to proteins.

      * is an air pollutant resulting from combustion, such as automotive exhaust and tobacco smoke. It is also created by thermal degradation of polymers in the plastics processing industry.

      And as for the trace amounts of Antimony which is used in  plastic as a catalyst. The amounts found in liquids like bottled water are 1% of the daily maximum... but I have not seen how much is found when the bottle is old or damaged (crinkled, bent etc.)

      Antimony

      Antimony (Sb) is a catalyst that is often used as Antimony trioxide (Sb2O3) or Antimony triacetate in the production of PET. It remains in the material and can thus in principle migrate out into food and drinks. Although antimony trioxide is of low toxicity[citation needed], its presence is still of concern. The Swiss Federal Office of Public Health investigated the amount of antimony migration, comparing waters bottled in PET and glass: the antimony concentrations of the water in PET bottles was higher, but still well below the allowed maximal concentrations

      Pogo & Murphy's Law, every time. Also "Trust but verify" - St. Ronnie (hah...)

      by IreGyre on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:46:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Bottled Water & Pet Rocks (3+ / 0-)

    I've got a new product. I put dirt in a paper bag and sell it for $5 a pop. Interested?

    All bottles & cans must be recycled. No exceptions.

    I live in Portland, Oregon. The main source of water for the city is the Bull Run Reservoir up on Mt. Hood, filled to the rim with glacial melt. An experienced hydrologist a few years back studied the water supply and called it "the most spectacular hydrological display I've ever heard of anywhere." I get it right out of the tap. Mmmmm, tasty.

    A boner is a terrible thing to waste.

    by Otherday on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:24:12 AM PDT

    •  Bull Run isn't glacial water (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      oldjohnbrown

      I'm an experienced hydrologist too, and Bull Run water is derived overwhelmingly from precipitation:

         * The watershed drains about 102 square miles of forested landscape.
         * Over 250 species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish may occur in the watershed, according to an Oregon Department of Forestry review of Oregon's forest habitats.  
         * Almost 53% of the watershed is classified as 'old growth' and has never been logged.
         * Rain, not snowmelt, provides 90-95% of the water in the watershed, averaging 130 inches a year.

      •  Main Point: Fine Water (0+ / 0-)

        A wonderful watershed. No need for bottled water.

        A boner is a terrible thing to waste.

        by Otherday on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:17:44 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yep (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Otherday

          I'm amazed to see people buy bottled water around here.  Some of the best water in the world, and because they're convinced somehow that "tap water" is bad, they pay through the nose for bottles.

          •  Goofy & Wasteful (0+ / 0-)

            A boner is a terrible thing to waste.

            by Otherday on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:48:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  You live in Portland? (0+ / 0-)

            Portland tap water does horrible things to my insides, even if I just brew coffee with it.

            I lived there for three months in 2007, and suffered intestinal distress any time I drank straight tap water. Same thing when I've visited over the years.

            There is something in Portland water that bothers me, no matter how good it tastes to you. Of course, Seattle isn't much better -- at least not where I lived, downtown in a 100-plus-year-old building where the water often turned brown.

            "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

            by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:26:27 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  I suspect it was not the Portland water (0+ / 0-)

              That caused your problems.  More likely it was something else.  If it was the water, it probably was caused by something in the plumbing in the building where you lived.  Portland water is very pure and is among the best in the nation.  Seattle's is very good, too.  

              I remember a story I was told when I was in graduate school about a water engineer in the U.K. who received a call one day from a very agitated woman:

              "Are you the water man?" she inquired.

              "Yes Ma'am," was the reply.

              "Well, I have the strangest thing to report. There are feathers in the water."

              "Pardon me?"

              "That's right - there are feathers in my water.  Every time I turn on the tap a feather comes out."

              The engineer knew that was impossible, but he decided this was odd enough that he would check on it personally.  He drove to the woman's house, a cottage on the perimeter of the town.

              After introducing himself, he asked to be shown the tap plagued by feathers.  Sure enough, when the woman opened up the cold water tap, a feather emerged and floated on the water pooling in the sink.

              Astonished, he asked the woman to describe her house - where the plumbing comes in from the road, and so on.  

              She pointed to a location next to a willow tree and added, "My husband, bless his soul, always was worried that the water would go out, so he installed a cistern in the attic to store a few hundred gallons in case it did."

              The engineer asked where the attic stairs were, and after climbing through a door found himself looking in the dim light filtering through the roof vents at an elliptical galvanized steel tank with a wood top.  The top was slightly askew, however, and when he grabbed his torch to peer inside, found a dead owl floating in the water, surrounded by little downy feathers.

  •  It's all about re-privatizing (10+ / 0-)

    The disappearance of public drinking fountains was more ominous than the disappearance of pay phones.  I think it hit home to me when we had reports about water riots at Woodstock '96 (???).  There was no free drinking water, as I understand it.  And if you couldn't afford to buy the bottled water (which had gone up in priced due to demand), you were SOL.

    Dulce bellum inexpertis [War is sweet only to those who have no experience of it].

    by Fatherflot on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:25:49 AM PDT

    •  Woodstock '99 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brooke In Seattle

      Although I attributed the rioting to a crappy concert and overconsumption of alcohol as much as I did the rampant corporatism and price-gouging.

      Now I don't know but I been told/it's hard to run with the weight of gold
      Other hand I heard it said/it's just as hard with the weight of lead

      by ekthesy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:57:24 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Carbonated water on tap (5+ / 0-)

    Back in the day I tried my hand at brewing beer and dilskied the chore of washing and filling bottles & so I acquired some used stainless steel soda kegs (5 gallon capacity) along with a CO2 tap system installed in an old Norge refrigerator (tap coming through a hole drilled in the door). That worked well, but it was too much of an attractive nuisance to have beer on tap at any time. So, the whole setup has been repurposed to deliver water, which carbonates nicely under 10 psi or so of pressure. I fill it either with tap water filtered through a Britta pitcher, or with supermarket water in refillable jugs filtered by Culligan's process (49 cents/gallon). It really hits the spot!

    Now, the Luddites content to catch rainwater in tarps in their back yards may sniff that I need to figure the cost of running the refrigerator and the occasional trip to get the CO2 cylinder refilled, with associated carbon footprint (burp), but I'll just sit back with a cold one and leave that as an exercise for more aesthetic types than me.

  •  Here's what I did. (0+ / 0-)

    At one point I had bought a small box of 20oz bottled water.  When I finished them, I didn't toss the bottles, but instead am reusing them...several at home, one at work.  I just clean them out occasionally.  At work, I get to fill it with cold, filtered water from the company kitchen, even better than the water that was initially in the bottle.  Occasionally I have to clean it to make sure it doesn't get contaminated with any biological nastiness.

    My dropping the soft drinks, and thus all the associated chemicals/caffeine (I am not a coffee drinker) has started to make an impact on the other aspects of my life.  I am losing weight, my mood is more or less stable, I don't get the paralyzing headaches I recently have been getting.

    And to be reusing the bottles as I do -- well, it just makes sense.  I regularly fill four for my home desk, and make trips to the kitchen for the one I keep there.  It just makes sense.

    Bottled water isn't bad, but people have been misled into thinking that constantly buying these is the way to go.

  •  Teaching people to "not trust the tapwater" (11+ / 0-)

    Is also a way of creating distrust and fear (primarily amongst the more-likely-to-be-liberal elite) about government's ability to deliver basic services, the superiority of privatized, commercial products.

    One could probably work up a very potent analogy between bottled water and military contractors and privatized social security.  They all flow (no pun intended) from the same logic. And they are all scams for extracting profits, deliberately squandering social capital and delivering a worthless product that leaves people more vulnerable.

    Dulce bellum inexpertis [War is sweet only to those who have no experience of it].

    by Fatherflot on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:33:22 AM PDT

  •  I have a Nalgene (5+ / 0-)

    I have a Nalgene hard plastic bottle that I refill with tap water and then put in the fridge to get cold.

    "Individuality begins only when tolerance is sustained."

    by mattc129 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:35:27 AM PDT

    •  I gave up bottled water for (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Damnit Janet, BlueInRedCincy

      Brita filtered water in stainless steel bottles -- I bought two and now various organizations have given me a couple more. I keep two or three in the fridge and then take them with me when I go. On a superhot day when I have forgotten my water I might buy a plastic bottle of water out on the golf course, but that is 2 or 3 times a year not a case of 24 every couple of weeks. I am diabetic and basically only drink water, coffee, tea and wine so I do need to drink a lot of water.

      Interestingly I got into bottled water a few years ago after golf courses removed free cold water because one course in our area had let the water stand too long in the big containers and someone allegedly got sick from it. I suspect it more likely that they wanted to increase sales of pop, beer and water from the travelling carts.

      We have only just begun and none too soon.

      by global citizen on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:50:01 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Nalgene is not a healthy choice (0+ / 0-)

      it contains bisphenol-A.

  •  More public drinking fountains! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pkbarbiedoll, timewarp

    The answer was right in front of us all along.  And think of what kinds of jobs that creates...construction, maintenance, janitorial...

    "It stinks." - Jay Sherman, Film Critic.

    by angry liberaltarian on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:36:21 AM PDT

  •  A while back I spent $6.99 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    condorcet, Jampacked

    for a stainless steel OGGI water bottle that I fill every day from the tap.  Our municipal water down here is really quite clean.  In fact, we're the only city whose utility (water department) has been certified by the government to be able to reintroduce water into the Floridan Aquifer using a natural process.  (It's a system of recycling that includes flowing through natural creek beds, etc.  Pretty fascinating stuff.)  If I want cold water, I put it in the fridge overnight.  The only thing I can't do is freeze the bottle, as it affects the integrity of the steel over time.

    I don't regret my purchase.  

    Plastic water bottles are wholly unnecessary.  So is bottled water.

    I'm sick of GOP SOP!

    by xysea on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 05:39:05 AM PDT

  •  great article (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    barath, Damnit Janet, Jampacked

    about creepy Fiji and Fiji water in the issue of Mother Jones that was in our NN09 bags.  I am lucky to have very good municipal water (in Baltimore, believe it or not) but even average municipal water is ok.  Progressives especially need to stop buying this stuff.  

  •  New Scam - Vitaminwater (7+ / 0-)

    I was just reading about this last night. I've never understood why Vitaminwater and the flavored waters are so popular. If you look at the label, these have a lot of calories.

    AlterNet has an article about this and how the sales of soda and regular bottled water are decling so the bottlers have moved on.

    I began to read the contents and had quite an eye-opening moment. Vitaminwater had "natural" ingredients like "processed crystalline fructose," "natural" caffeine and a lot of other things I didn't understand like deionized and/or reverse-osmosis water.

    And as I did the math, I realized there were 125 calories in one of those sexy bottles, along with 32.5 grams of sugar ..."natural" of course. Hmm ... that's almost what a can of Coca-Cola has.

    First, Vitaminwater, Smartwater, Fruitwater and Vitamin Energy are all owned by Coca-Cola,  which purchased Glaceau, the maker of Vitaminwater, in 2007 for $4.1 billion dollars (that's quite a growing market for sugar water) in order to "upgrade its portfolio of noncarbonated beverages."

    A key goal was to move two groups -- ex-Coca-Cola addicts and reformed bottled-water drinkers -- over to the hyped Vitaminwater. But the reality is they were packaging empty calories and caffeine into a slick new bottle that gives the illusion of health.

    Apparently, some of the Vitaminwater varieties are equivalent in caffeine content to the amount of caffeine in the popular energy drink Red Bull, which seems to take pride in providing us legal crack in a can (which I might add is loaded with our "natural caffeine" guarana as well).

    A popular sport Web site, DeadSpin.com was alerted by a source that Vitaminwater had six products possibly containing substances that could be problematic for NCAA athletes. If the athletes consumed sufficient quantities some of these flavors -- Power C, Energy, B-Relaxed, Rescue, Vital T and Balance -- there was a chance that a drug test might come up positive, potentially resulting in lost eligibility.

    People need to think about what they're doing - they may have traded in their bottled water but if they replaced it with these flavored waters or water hyped as healthy, they may well be doing more harm than good.

  •  I only but bottles when I have no other access (0+ / 0-)

    to water or think that I can't trust the tap water (in other words only a few times a year). I've been making the same point about bottled water costing more than gasoline since the turn of the millennium, and continue to shake my head at how the illusion of safety that bottled water implies (versus tap) fuels an enormous amount of money being dumped in their hands.

  •  Flow (0+ / 0-)

    Watch this film
    http://www.flowthefilm.com/
    Salina builds a case against the growing privatization of the world's dwindling fresh water supply with an unflinching focus on politics, pollution, human rights, and the emergence of a domineering world water cartel.

    A bottled water company USA Springs bought up a rural parcel not far from where I live in NH. They intended to pump over 300 thousands gallons a day from our aquifer and bottle then sell it in Italy. It's happening all over the country Nestle has invaded Maine and takes huge quantities of their water for profit.

    "Are we to continue entrusting our affairs to men ...... having nothing to recommend them except methodical hatred and skill in vituperation?" Bertrand Russell

    by sydluna on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:01:29 AM PDT

  •  At home we have PUR filter attached to our faucet (2+ / 0-)

    water tastes great. We never get bottled water unless we are out biking or something and run out of tap water from home and are still thirsty.

  •  I drink bottled water... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cardinal, Brooke In Seattle

    I don't trust the tap.  Sorry.

    Comes in big 10L jugs that I take back and turn in.  Presumably they get cleaned and refilled with fresh water.  Pretty cheap too.

    I did do the little bottled water thing, but recognized quickly that that is both more expensive and a bigger recycling hassle.  If you can afford to lug around the larger and more durable jugs, do that.

    I turn in 3 of 4 10L jugs for refill once every 4 weeks or so, at the cost of $15.  Good deal for me not to have to drink the water that smells dodgy.

    I used to live on a sugar cane farm up north aus.  You could drink the rainwater.  How far we've fallen...

  •  Coke continued bottling Atlanta city water during (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DEMonrat ankle biter

    the drought last year.  Shameful.

    Tipped & recced.  Great diary!

    Sunshine on my shoulders...

    by pkbarbiedoll on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:04:34 AM PDT

  •  We recently switched to stainless steel (0+ / 0-)

    reusable water bottles, which we refill from the brita pitcher in our fridge.

    I have a questions though. Maybe someone here has some suggestions.

    We're going camping Thursday - Sunday. No potable water at the campsite that I'm aware of. I'm thinking I may be reduced to bringing along a case of bottled water to keep myself and my three kids well hydrated. But I'd like to do something more environmentally responsible, if possible.

    ideas?

    When I was young, I admired clever people. Now that I am old, I admire kind people. ~Abraham Joshua Heschel

    by dakinishir on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:09:26 AM PDT

  •  Where's the drinking fountains? (0+ / 0-)

    They need to make a comeback before weaning ourselves off of bottled water really can work.

    Everywhere I go I ask them, "where's the drinking fountain?" Mostly it's no where to be found.

    Everyone start asking so businesses, stores, gas stations, local governments, schools get the picture.

  •  There was a good article on Fiji water (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    barath, condorcet

    in the latest Mother Jones.

    I may do a diary on it later, if it stays slow at work.

  •  my 4 kids never even got a "juice box" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Damnit Janet

    always used a thermos and YES they washed them out.Really old school by today's standards.Now they range from age 29 to 23 and they still use refillable bottles.No styrofoam used as well.This is not a new thing.The envoirmnetal impact was known in the 70's Why we ignored this I will never know.

  •  BTW (0+ / 0-)

    my 4 children had a total of 2 cavities between them partly because of the flouride in the water where we live.Giving a child only purified water adds the need for flouride treatments.My extended family has alot of farmers.They have wells and need to have these treatments for their children.

  •  I drink tap water... (0+ / 0-)

    used to drink bottled water in gallon jugs. I never buy water anymore. If someone gives me a bottled water, I use it to refill with tap water to carry around with me, then I recycle the plastic.

  •  The funniest bottled water faux pas I've seen (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Damnit Janet

    Is with Penta Water.

    Here's a couple of guys who decide to start up a "healthier" water company, figure out a marketing gimmick to differentiate their "product" from plain tap water as well as other bottled waters, and -- in what must have been a flash of inspiration -- decide to name it the nickname of a well known poison.

    Genius at work.

  •  good (0+ / 0-)

    i drink tap water. or I drink tap water filtered through a brita filter.

    on the rare times we have to go through the drive through, i ask for tap water.

    (+0.12, -3.33) I hate to say it, but Bill Maher was right.

    by terrypinder on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:32:09 AM PDT

  •  Here's the problem I have with this (8+ / 0-)

    popular argument:  Just because some or even most brands of bottled water contain tap - doesn't mean every company is conning us (nor does it mean all bottled water drinkers are dupes).  I drink Crystal Geyser religiously.  Wanna know why?  I am EXTREMELY sensitive to chlorine - I get pseudo-estrogenic effects from it which causes me... let's just say female troubles.  I have observed that these same side effects consistently and predictably occur even after drinking filtered water (no from-the-tap filter can remove 100% of the chlorine and most only reduce it slightly or simply "mask" the taste).  The other reason I purchase bottled water despite the political incorrectness of it all, is that I live in a 60 year old house with lead pipes.  The way I figure it, even if I am being completely conned, chances are good the "municipal source" in question doesn't contain as much heavy metal sediment as my home-sweet-home water.

    But the fact is I DON'T drink water bottled from a municipal source. Here's the water I buy & drink:

    (from the company website)
    CRYSTAL GEYSER ® ALPINE SPRING WATER
    Quality Control:

    # We carefully select protected water sources. # We bottle at the spring source: water is drawn directly from the spring and bottled. # We produce our own proprietary PET bottles on-site to further control the quality of our product. # Our bottles also have unique safety caps and seals. The cap's flange underneath prevents air from entering the bottle or water from leaking out of the bottle. # We use a double disinfection system: ozonation and 0.1 micron filtration. Only one is required! # We meet the stringent European Union standards. CRYSTAL GEYSER ® ALPINE SPRING WATER ™ is the only American brand authorized to sell in France. # We also meet the Japanese bottled water standards and export to Japan.

    This water is sold at several stores in my area for less than $1 a gallon.  This is all I will buy.  CG keeps the cost of their water down by taking measures that also reduce their impact on the environment relative to other spring water companies.  First, they only ship water from the closest company aquifer, reducing fuel costs and transport expense.  The water I drink here in Eugene, Oregon comes from a spring in Mt. Shasta, California.  (By comparison, the Knudsen fruit juice I like to drink for breakfast is more than three times as expensive and travels about 70 miles further to get to my grocer's shelf... but I've never heard anyone make a stink about that.)  Second, CG's bottles are square, maximizing the number that can be crammed into a single truckload, and again, reducing costs.  Oh yeah, and I do what I can on my end by recycling every empty gallon jug curbside.

    Is it less than ideal?  Absolutely.  But from my POV, it's better than dealing with endometriosis or breast cancer.

    I realize our mindless addiction to single-serve bottled water is a real problem ecologically as well as financially.  I just wish people wouldn't keep relying on this false framing that assumes all bottled water is equally dubious just because some companies are selling little more than a fancy package.  Let's also not oversimplify the debate by pretending that our municipal water supply is perfectly clean and safe when it's not, or that normal, household water filters can make drinking water as pure as artisan spring water when they can't.

    "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

    by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:33:53 AM PDT

    •  you have a real allergy (4+ / 0-)

      that is not the case with over 90% of the population.I am glad there is one water company that is really a true pure water for you to get.

    •  many filters (brita, etc.) fix this (0+ / 0-)

      you don't need bottled water - just filter the tap water...

      •  delillo wrote that they've tried filters (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        delillo2000

        and that it doesn't filter the chlorine out enough to prevent the negative health effects they experience. I can relate. Some people have very real sensitivities to chlorine and/or chloramine.

        Even expensive reverse osmosis filters can't filter out much of the chloramine in my city's tap water. I'll stick with what keeps me feeling healthiest.

      •  I HAVE an outstanding water filter on (0+ / 0-)

        my kitchen sink and it ISN'T good enough.  Britta's are a joke, by comparison.  I've done my research, and I'm speaking scientifically when I say NO chlorine filter is 100%.  The best matrix is actually KDF which alters the chlorine into a different, supposedly safe, nonreactive chemical instead of trying to remove it (which doesn't work very well).  I use a top of the line KDF filter on my shower, because that's the best I can do, but I still wouldn't want to drink it.

        "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

        by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:23:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Boy, I guess we're lucky to have bottled water (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      sabredance, Night Train, delillo2000

      then, because all the other countries that don't even have municipal water at all or decent municipal water must have been relying on Deer Creek to save them too, right?

      Although i don't recall seeing a lot of coca cola trucks in Africa or Asia.

      We are so shamefully spoiled.

      The problem I have with your argument (not with you personally) is that bottle water - no matter who the bottler is - is still an absurd luxury if we as Americans are candid enough to realize our status on this planet.

      People die by the thousands in places where cholera and other diseases turn a sip of any available water for miles just to quench a sadistic thurst into what can become a month of wasting death.

      And here we are - aquifer, or reverse osmosis tap water? .

      I'm sorry, I'm really sorry - but the whole thing just makes me ashamed.

      In the last year I bought bottled drinks on occasions where I was thirsty and there was no public source of water convenient. I buy wide-mouth bottles if I can, and the ones that suit me functionally I keep. Since I take all my plastic anything home with me to recycle when there is no dedicated recycling opportunity, I fill the ten bottles I have kept on my kitchen counter with tap water, and throw it in the fridge.

      I wash the bottles occasionally in the sink with the rest of the dishes.

      So I guess I'm guilty of drinking "bottled" water; it's in a bottle that came out of my tap, but it's the same bottle for two or three months until I wear it out and recycle it.

      In other words then - I go through about 20 plastic bottles per year. Total.

      Your odds of being killed in a car accident on the way to the grocery store to buy the water are higher than the cancer or endometriosis.  

      George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

      by snafubar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:09:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Spoiled American? -- Acknowledged. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lrhoke, snafubar

        At greater risk of being harmed by a random accident than by chronic exposure to a cocktail of already proven carcinogens?  My personal experience, coupled with the facts about what my water contains, makes me doubt that.

        You wrote:

        Your odds of being killed in a car accident on the way to the grocery store to buy the water are higher than the cancer or endometriosis.

        With all due respect, you actually have no idea what my odds of cancer are, not having access to my medical or family history.  Nor can you calculate the real risk of a car accident, not knowing the route, distance, speeds, mode of transportation, time of day, or my driving style.

        I won't argue with you that we are extremely and undeservedly privileged in this country, and would do well to never take it for granted.  I am not, however, so self-loathing that I will forgo the simple measures available to me that keep me healthy, just to prove how politically-conscious I am.

        When your menstrual flow lasts for fifteen exceedingly bloody, gut-wrenching days and your breasts become so swollen, lumpy and painfully tender they feel like they're going to explode right out of your skin, simply because you drank FILTERED tap water for a week, then maybe we'll have enough common ground for you to start telling me how I should and shouldn't live.

        Until then, all I ask is that you respect my point of view and acknowledge that even issues that seem cut and dried with right and wrong solutions may not be quite that simple.

        (P.S. I TRIED to spare you the gory details....)

        "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

        by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:13:46 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I tried not to make it personal, but the american (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          delillo2000

          attitude towards morbidity really shames me.

          I already put up a pretty meaty screed on it.

          We've got 150,000 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, we've lost almost 5,000 of them, almost eight years after an enemy killed 2,978 Americans.

          Meanwhile, 20,000 people a year - 50 a day - commit suicide in the U.S.

          We lose roughly 120 people every day in this country in automobile accidents; that's the same as a 737 airliner falling out of the sky and killing all aboard every single day.

          Hundreds per day will succumb to illness from overindulgence of their own bad habits and lazy, careless lifestyles that lead to cancer, heart disease, lung disease, diabetes -

          Septicemia - blood infections - is still in the top ten causes of death in the U.S.  

          The automobile accidents alone - not just drunk drivers, but stupid accidents by sober ones - means we are willing to have a 9/11 every 19 days -

          where's the "war" on that?

          But the libertarians are ready to fire their muskets to defend their right to continue doing the galactically stupid just to prove that no one can tell them not to...and no freakin' "nanny" is going to tell them that to wear a seat belt might increase their chances of living by a factor of five....

          So my comment wasn't specifically meant to challenge the difficulty of your situation as much as it was a broader comment that this country at large is often obsessed with chasing down the exotic problems with the sensational headlines; yet we're walking right past the rake we keep stepping on that smashes us in the head on every third step while we go on some proud libertarian screed about all the reasons our founders said we shouldn't just to pick up the damn rake so it won't hit us anymore.

          I was on the larger issue of plastics; and why it's more a matter of status, pride, and arrogance for most people, and not so much an issue of safety or health.

          That's all.  

          George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

          by snafubar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 11:00:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Explanation appreciated and accepted. :) (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            snafubar

            My favorite phrase:  "... defend their right to continue doing the galactically stupid...." - That's the best description I've ever heard concerning libertarians! :)  I also appreciate you offering all those stats.  It's good you're not one of those "drive-by" critics who just shoots and runs without backing up anything they've said (or even reading carefully the thing they're criticizing in the first place!) :)

            "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

            by delillo2000 on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 04:45:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Well your calm and measured words and willingness (0+ / 0-)

              to engage with me without demagoguery and ad hominem attacks is also rare; and I appreciate it very much as well.

              I've been accused of being a drive-by critic; because I am admittedly so intense that I sometimes throw back as hard as what gets thrown at me and it seems unwarranted.

              You demonstrated a slow, polite way of getting us both involved, that worked well. If only we could make this form of diplomacy more popular.

              Netroots really changed my attitude; I realized how awful it was that I completely unloaded on people because they were nothing more than characters on a screen; once we looked into each other's eyes and cant' deny we're both human it's a different interaction.

              I just had another go around with my Reagan-loving neighbor; and although we're in the end still neighbors and we haven't yet said something unforgivable, it's only because we both know we can't move out of our houses even if we can't move from our ideological stands either.

              I wish you the best with allergies; my mother was allergic to just about everything, so I have some appreciation for the delicate and nervous balance you must find between being able to relax and finding yourself sick.

              I wish you the best, and all of us some solution to the unconscionable but inevitable crisis we are creating for ourself with our own pollution.

              George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

              by snafubar on Thu Aug 27, 2009 at 07:14:01 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

    •  By the way, tell me your address and I'll replace (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      delillo2000

      your "lead" pipes or lead soldered copper pipes for less than what you spend on the bottled water in a year.

      Even if you aren't drinking it, if they are actually "lead" pipes, simply skin contact with water that runs through them is enough to enjoy the lead contamination over time. Think about all the mucous membranes you get wet when when you take a shower; or that nice, steamy atomized vapor that just came out of a "lead" pipe that you're breathing?

      They're probably not "lead" pipes; galvanized maybe which is zinc coated. Lead hasn't been used for water supply for longer than 60 years; although we did still have lead in the solder for copper pipes until the 70s.

      Either way - if the lead in the pipes is the problem, that's not likely to cost more than $2000 to replace with copper; even less with plastic; there's always a reasonable plumber or a "guy you know" like me who does favors at material cost and a nice meal.  

      Check your grocery store receipts and get back to me with how long it takes for the bottled water to cover that.

      I'm not trying to be snide or condescending or belittling, because I understand the chlorine allergy - but the "lead" in the pipes is a different story.

      George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

      by snafubar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:27:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  See, NOW we're talkin! :) (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        snafubar

        "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

        by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:15:17 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Thanks for this follow-up post. :) (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        snafubar

        I'm sorry I responded to your first one before reading it (such are the hazards of type-written conversation :). Solutions are exactly what I'm interested in.

        The house is a post WWII government tract cottage (circa 1950). Unfortunately, I rent, so major renovations aren't really mine to sign off on.  We have a super huge KDF shower filter with a pre filter for sediment and a triple stage carbon filter for the kitchen sink (which my boyfriend drinks from while I only use it to rinse vegetables).  I am hoping to get another KDF pass-through for the bathroom sink as soon as I can afford it.

        If it were ONLY the heavy metal and random junk from the pipes, I would agree with you that pipe replacement is the best solution (and I've actually looked into it quite extensively despite the fact that I'm a renter).  Because the chlorine reaction is such a nuisance, as well, I would STILL have to drink the bottled (or haul it from some rural well somewhere :)) even with new, shiny pipes at my disposal.  That's my biggest dilemma.  The seriously old pipes simply reinforce my decision to drink spring.  They aren't the main reason I started.

        In answer to your question, I spend exactly $365 per year on bottled water (99 cents a gallon, 1 gallon a day).

        I appreciate you offering to retrofit the pipes, and I recognize that your quote is EXTREMELY reasonable (I'm assuming that's a goodness-of-your heart, DK discount kind of thing).  Under the circumstances (being a low-income, non home-owner and having more problems with chlorine than anything else), I'm not sure it's the best way for us to go. I would rather just move to the country and kiss this city water and substandard housing goodbye, but then I'd REALLY be polluting the earth with my 40 miles round trip daily commute! ;-)  Right now I live on a bike path, five minutes from everything, and I pay about 1/3 less in rent than I would if this were a newer house.  Bottled water is my trade-off.

        Ultimately, I would like to see a less hazardous alternative to chlorine for water treatment, but I haven't really studied that end of the issue.  I'm not sure what a municipality's water sanitizing options are -- either in the short term or the long term.  

        "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

        by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:08:24 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Well I'm glad we had this chat. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          delillo2000

          I was afraid - and as I re-read what I wrote was sure - that I sounded very critical and dismissive of your situation. My point was to seperate the chlorine allergy from the lead issue; I agree that allergies are nothing to sneeze at (sorry), but they are a totally different animal from lead in the pipes or in the solder that connects them.

          Your rationale sounds perfectly reasonable based on your extended explanation, and I salute and support your path taken.

          I guess I get hot about these issues too, because even when i go to the drop=off recycling place here in town and see how F**king lazy people are that they can't sort, or maybe they can't read - I just think about all that plastic floating around in the pacific ocean and all the animals and...

          Then I think of how funny it used to be when we quoted that line from "The Graduate" where the guy says "Plastics, my boy. The Future is in plastics" -

          and it's just not that funny any more.

          There is a politically active and quite cynical guy here in town that puts his views up on one of those 'sandwich' board signs with the interchangeable letters - and one day he had the whole thing decorated like a tree with plastic grocery bags, the caption read:

          "The New State Bird of Pennsylvania"

          George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

          by snafubar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:34:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I know what you mean.... (0+ / 0-)

            We used to have sort-it-yourself curbside service which I much preferred to our current dump-everything-in-one-bin method. For one thing, there's no way all that messy, mixed together junk gets reclaimed and used.  The other reason I dislike it is that cognitively it's no different than throwing something in the trash.  It does nothing to correct our disposable society mentality.  I don't have to tell you this.... but when people are forced to deal with all that packaging on a daily/weekly basis, they very quickly learn to buy things in bulk! ;) I miss bundling and bagging everything in tidy little sections -- it made me feel like I was being responsible and making a difference.  The recyclables "trash can" gives me no such confidence. :\

            Anyway, thanks for talking it all through with me.  I believe most people can come to a meeting of the minds if they just stick it out. :)

            "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

            by delillo2000 on Wed Aug 26, 2009 at 04:27:22 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Crystal Geyser (0+ / 0-)

      doesn't just pump from Mt. Shasta.  They also have a plant in or near Olancha, California, in the Owens Valley.  The Owens Valley is notorious for having had all its water stolen/taken by Los Angeles in the 1930s via the Los Angeles aquaduct. The Owens Valley was once a ranching and agricultural area. Now the Owens Valley and the Olancha area in particular, is a desert plagued by dust storms. There's not enough water to keep the dust down because the water table has been lowered so badly.

      Litigation against the City of Los Angeles by various environmental groups has forced the City to rewater some areas, including the Owens Lake and the Owens River, but the City then removes the water once again afterwards.

      Link

      Owens Valley Link

      "A guarantee of equality that is subject to exceptions made by a majority is no guarantee at all." San Francisco Chief Deputy City Attorney, Therese Stewart

      by DMiller on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:38:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Correction (0+ / 0-)

        the first aquaduct was completed in 1913.  Water wars erupted in the 1920s.

        "A guarantee of equality that is subject to exceptions made by a majority is no guarantee at all." San Francisco Chief Deputy City Attorney, Therese Stewart

        by DMiller on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:43:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Water wars are a whole other ball of wax. (0+ / 0-)

        Regardless of all the other bottled water factors and their contribution to waste and pollution, I don't think it can ever be argued that the water, itself, is being wasted.  People are simply drinking it.  Regardless of where the water comes from, the amount they need to consume remains virtually the same.  

        "I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." -Thomas Jefferson

        by delillo2000 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:26:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Dasani (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FishBiscuit

    Coke tried to introduce Dasani into the UK in 2004.

    At first, the launch seemed to have go well, and Coke executives thought the public would respond to their new product with its distinctive blue packaging. But everything changed when the Press Association reporter Graham Hiscott saw the reference in the Grocer magazine to the real source of Dasani.

    The following day, the story was splashed across the daily papers. Headlines like "The Real Sting" a play on Coke's "The Real Thing" slogan and the more obvious "Coke sells tap water for 95p" could hardly have been worse for Coke and their new baby.

    The tabloids drew on the uncanny parallel with the episode in the BBC sitcom "Only Fools and Horses", in which Del Boy and Rodney take ordinary tap water from their Peckham flat and bottle it up to sell as Peckham Spring. The irony couldn't have been worse. Dasani was sourced and bottled in a factory in Sidcup, just a few miles down the road from Peckham! The tabloids continued their onslaught. "Are they taking us for plonkers!" yelled the Daily Star.

    Needless to say, Danasi has never re-appeared. Perrier water, by the way, owes its fame and its unique shaped bottle to a Brit who first marketed it. The French brought it back later and subsequently sold it to Nestle.

    "Israel was born out of Jewish terrorism." Sir Gerald Kaufman, British MP and son of Holocaust survivor.

    by Lib Dem FoP on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:34:58 AM PDT

  •  Counter argument! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lrhoke, FishBiscuit

    The environmental benefits from tap vs. bottled are clear.

    BUT:

    If people choose a fizzy Perrier instead of a fizzy Coca Cola, the bottled water is better.

    Without good tasting tap, the only alternative in many places -- like in urban areas -- is soda or sugary drinks. Many cities have disgusting water.

    For instance, DC had a scandal where the water had huge lead levels around 2004 and didn't tell anyone. I wouldn't let my children drink it after hearing that.

    So the new lightly flavored no-sugar type waters are a better alternative for people who are in a city and stopping by 7-11 for a drink.

    Everything else is sugary and leads to diabetes.

    •  doesn't a water filter take care of that problem? (0+ / 0-)
      •  Not necessarily (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FishBiscuit

        Water filter can remove most lead.

        But can it remove all the other stuff, like antibitoics, drugs, and other biproducts that are, for instance, making male fish in the Potomac have eggs?

        http://news.nationalgeographic.com/...

        Something fishy is happening in the headwaters of the Potomac River. Scientists have discovered that some male bass are producing eggs—a decidedly female reproductive function.

        Would you want to drink that crap, even with a filter? The EPA doesn't even know why it is happening, so it could be a chemical they aren't even monitoring or filtering.

        I'm disputing the notion that tap water is absolutely safe. It isn't, as long as some places continue to pollute the very water people, including children and pregnant women, are drinking. DC assured its residents in 2004 that the water was safe. Now it turns out many thousands of children were likely harmed.

        I'm just saying that:

        1. Some areas have truly bad tap water, which make me wary of the safety even with a filter
        1. Americans drink tons of sugary drinks, which lead to obesity and diabetes. Flavored water, for instance, is a better choice than Coke.  
        •  And you think this isn't in your (0+ / 0-)

          bottled water?  Water that doesn't even have to meet the same safety standards as muni water?

          Repubs - the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public. (Bill Maher)

          by Sychotic1 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:29:07 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yes, but (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BoxNDox

            Some springs have been tested and are far cleaner than, say, the Potomac. Many of the famous ones are known quantities. Look em up.

            I'm not talking about Aquafina and Dasani, which use tap water. Yes, some are jsut as bad. Perhaps we need labelling and testing of bottled water.

            But we have a real water crisis with dirty, polluted, and harmful water that is going in our drinking water. Ignoring it doesn't do anyone any good.

            Environmentalists who want to save on energy costs can't simply ignore the harm to our health, especially children.
            (And especially inner city children)  

            And just getting rid of bottled water may simply push the energy and water to soda bottles.

            We're talking school drinking fountains with lead in the pipes. We're talking about unknown effects on fetuses.  I don't think it is as easy to solve this as simply saying "get rid of bottled water".

            A little caution, folks!

  •  Nestle has just bullied itself into (4+ / 0-)

    my Colorado neighborhood...They bought property with a spring on it that feeds the Arkansas River north of Salida, CO, and although no one wants them here, and fought it like crazy, they have managed to maneuver the 3 Republican county commissioners to OK their project; hauling out water in a high mountain desert, for a pittance, adding huge trucks 24 hours a day to the mountain roads, not adding anything, but taking away, for bottled water.  

    Their modus operandi is to buy property, then threaten to tie up these towns and counties in lawsuits, deplete these springs, then leave.  I can't believe they are able to do this.  Most in our town now boycott bottled water.

    Nestle makes the very worst neighbor!!

  •  Another day, another scam (0+ / 0-)

    Have we become a nation of scamsters?   Sadly, there is hardly an industry or profession untainted by scandal in the last ten years.  This country needs a mass intervention.

  •  The answer is an energy tax. not this: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    codairem

    Try this some time -  when you see someone with a plastic bottle of water, ask if they might prefer drinking gasoline.  Of course they will think you strange.  Point out to them that the purchase cost per unit of bottled water is several times that of gasoline, ad they will be surprised, yet usually immediately start offering justifications about health and safety.

    "A lie isn't a side of a story. It's just a lie." The Wire

    by glutz78 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:43:48 AM PDT

  •  If you are wavering on the issue of water... (0+ / 0-)

    bottled or not, watch the movie Tapped.  You can find a preview at their website tappedthemovie.com

    Water wars, coming to an Earth near you.  

    Peace is much more than the absence of war and violence; it is a condition unto itself. Marianne Williamson

    by michaelmas on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:44:16 AM PDT

  •  Distillation (0+ / 0-)

    Should also mention distilled water which can be bought from the grocery store.
    The distillation process does remove all contanminants. Even though tap water is supposed to be clean studies have shown that it contains contaminants such as weed killer and pharmacuticals, not to mention fluoride. These contaminants are not removed by filtration.

  •  All these comments have made me thirsty, Be back (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FishBiscuit

    soon.

  •  It's not "simply tap water" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pozzo, BoxNDox

    The stuff is sent through various processes that (re)purify it.  It might initially come out of a municipal tap, but you make it sound like they're just filling bottles up at the sink and then selling them for a buck and some change.  

    I know it's cute to rail against bottled water like it's evil and blah blah blah, but it usually tastes significantly better and tends to be safer to drink.  Especially if you have well water, like I did growing up.

    I personally buy a bottle of water a week and then fill it up at the tap for the rest of the week when I'm done, since I really don't mind the taste of my city's water.  
    I moved here about a year or so ago.  Where I used to live I would not TOUCH the tap water, even though it was city water, because when I turned the faucet on, the water would either come out cloudy or have particles floating around in it...and it wasn't just at my place, either!  It tasted awful and the city seemed to think this was all completely normal.  My apartment complex suggested using a Brita filter if I wasn't happy.

    My parents have bottled water delivered to their house weekly because, as mentioned before, they are stuck with well water which is just all kinds of unhealthy for anything other than showering (and even then, it makes you wonder...)  It certainly isn't safe enough to drink.

    Don't get me wrong — I don't disagree that on whole, bottled water is kind of silly.  I just don't like when people disparage it by suggesting that it's no better than the water that comes out of your tap, when it typically is.

    My style is impetuous.
    My defense is impregnable.
    YOU'RE NOT ALEXANDER!

    by samfish on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 06:52:55 AM PDT

      •  Might want to read a little more carefully (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ChurchofBruce

        All that article says is that the FDA does the regulation for bottled water while the EPA handles tap water, and the FDA doesn't have the enforcement powers the EPA does. But all this means is the government isn't looking as hard at bottled water, not that there is actually a problem with bottled water.

        The article then goes on to contradict it's own headline by pointing out that the limits on lead in bottled water are more stringent than on tap water
        (5 PPB versus 15 PPB).

        The article then prattles on about how there's a limit on DEHP  (phthalates) in tap water but not bottled. But this turns out to be irrelevant because DEHP apparently enters tap water through municipal plumbing bottled water never sees, and the bottles used for water have been found not to contain DEHP.

        All in all, the case made here for tap water being oh so much safer is pretty darned weak. Now, if you have some hard evidence, as in actual studies showing an analysis of bottled water having more contaminants than tap, or even better, something to back up the often-repeated assertions that chemicals from the plastic container leach into bottled water, I'd love to hear it. But this isn't it.

  •  I have 4 little stainless steel H2O bottles (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hegemony57

    that I fill with my tap water.  Have used them for years.  Hate those plastic water bottles and the fact that it's more expensive than gasoline.

    It's all a marketing scam.  What's next?  Bottled air?

    And now, purely for its comedic effect: Bachmann/Jindal 2012!

    by WSComn on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:05:20 AM PDT

  •  I have plastic water bottles (0+ / 0-)

    But, I just refill them constantly and almost never get new ones. I suppose I should break out my old Nalgene bottles from my desert hiking days, but I can't seem to find them.

  •  For the record, best tap-water I've ever had: (0+ / 0-)

    Aruba.  Hands down the best tap-water ever.  That stuff is awesome.

  •  Home Bottling (0+ / 0-)

    I don't know why we haven't seen an entrepreneur selling or leasing a machine that plugs into the home tap, filling and cooling bottles. Returning the empties cleans them and refills them. A filter makes it just as "clean" as most of the stuff they buy.

    That would be much cheaper than buying each bottle. It would be much easier than buying bottles, which convenience is the main reason people buy bottled water. And of course it would be much more green. After it caught on, kitchen refrigerators would probably start including the "bottle factory", just as they started including water and icemakers.

    I don't know why we haven't seen Brita or one of the other big sellers of home water filters selling this. The closest they get is selling home water coolers, like Poland Spring, which means dealing with those huge bottles, without the portable containers that are the reason people by so many little bottles.

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro." - HST

    by DocGonzo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:25:56 AM PDT

  •  Always hating on water (0+ / 0-)

    How can something that is good for you be a scam?  Is water healthier than 99.99% of the other drinks on any given stores shelves or not?

    Sure, everyone should have their own filter and avoid buying all of their drinking water in a plastic container, but I for one am grateful to be able to choose a bottle of water over a soda or other sugared concoction at virtually any store in the country.

    Oh, and the statistic about municipal water?  Most brands that we see everyday may well be, but they are incredibly well filtered.  Hence drinking water, as opposed to toilet and bath water...

    "Reagan proved deficits don't matter." Dick Cheney

    by nyseer on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:27:36 AM PDT

    •  He's not hating on all water (0+ / 0-)

      What the hell are you talking about?

      He's talking about how selling consumers bottled water is an environmental disaster, because they get it FOR FREE and without such damage from their taps.

      Municipal drinking water in the U.S. is quite safe.  When was the last time there was a documented case of someone getting ill from drinking tap water?

      I finally put in a signature!

      by Boris Godunov on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:37:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And Coke and Pepsi are not? (0+ / 0-)

        They, and all bottled drinks are 99.999% water.  Yet it's the plain water, the healthiest drink of all that takes the heat.

        Municipal water is fine, won't kill you, but better quality water is better for drinking.  Better for you than a soda.  Or vitamin water or all the other crap that takes up most of the stores shelves...

        "Reagan proved deficits don't matter." Dick Cheney

        by nyseer on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 01:45:04 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  However, if you are thinking holistically (0+ / 0-)

      about the issue then it's not ONLY about your convenience (bottled water in vending machines all over the country which are in most cases plugged in to an electrical outlet to run their basic functions and/or refrigerate the contents).

      This is a larger social-scale problem as money/support shifts from public (municipal) water systems to private (corporate) water suppliers.

      The move is akin to the shift away from public (universal) education and the fight against a public option (one way of doing universal) for health care.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:52:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Municipal water has countless commercial uses (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lrhoke

        As I said above, water is 99.99% of every bottled drink in existence.  But no one complains about the municipal water supply being affected by breweries and soft drink suppliers. (Well, maybe they do, but plain, healthy water is always the poster child)

        I have a filter at home and buy very little water.  But when I'm out- like at an airport where you cannot bring your own- water is what I want to drink.

        Why are Pepsi addicts always given a pass but water drinkers blamed for ruining the environment?  It's an irrational argument.

        There are many environmental, chemical, political problems associated with everything we consume and we need to solve them, but blaming water because it is "just" water is leaving out the vast majority of industry that uses water.

        "Reagan proved deficits don't matter." Dick Cheney

        by nyseer on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:03:06 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  San Francisco Tap Water (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sychotic1

    Straight from the high Sierra snow melt in Yosemite through 150 miles of underground pipe to your lips. Or if you prefer, there's Perrier (bottled by Nestle from Sacramento river water that is mostly farmland runoff. I'm sure they filter the nasty stuff out when they put the fizz in. Enjoy.

    The moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends towards justice. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by easong on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:28:32 AM PDT

  •  Today I will buy a case of water for my ex-wife. (0+ / 0-)

    She will not stop drinking the stuff no matter how much I pointed out the environmental cost or the quality.  This is one of the reasons why she's my EX-wife; she listened to every word I said and couldn't care less.

    "The only thing to fear is tomorrows. I don't live for tomorrows. They're no fun." - Denny Crane

    by rainmanjr on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:29:35 AM PDT

  •  Some of us drink it... (0+ / 0-)

    I drink flavored water to keep me away from soda. I also work near the infamous 'Hot Zone' and no one I know here will drink the base water for obvious reasons. We even bring in water from home to make coffee...

    "Ridicule may lawfully be employed where reason has no hope of success."

    by QuestionAuthority on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:33:17 AM PDT

  •  Well that's one more reason (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    meatwad420

    to be thankful for the recession. I was a water bottle fanatic and non-recycler. Now I have a reusable water bottle that I carry to the gym, etc.

    Criticism from the left on compromises with Republicans and corporate interests is supporting the president in his goals, too. -Dallasdoc

    by niteskolar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:33:32 AM PDT

  •  A couple things about Jackson mentioning Nestle (0+ / 0-)

    Yes, most bottled water is tap water.

    But those Nestle brands mentioned above, esp. Deer Park and Poland Spring, are mountain water.

    I have been buying 5 gallon bottles for about a couple years. We have lead in our water lines where we live. We've been paying $7.50 a bottle knowing that transporting water is a big problem. I've been concerned too by the plastic bottles that Nestle uses because they are reused and they leech chemicals. We looked into a local water company that has access to local springs and bottles water in 5 gallon glass bottles. They charge $18 a bottle. Too rich for us.

    The first expensive filter we bought and used still tested for too high amount of lead.

    Typically, for cleaning vegetables and the like, we let the water run for a couple minutes until the sediment comes through, and then we can use the water. We've noticed our kids don't have the same patience so this is a concern. Jeez, I want off the bottles but I'm scratching my head as to how we're going to do it.

    Poland Spring actually tests very highly in water tests conducted by independent sources, but the enivornmental impact plus plastic chemicals, I want off.

    There are two kinds of people in this world. The kind who divide the world into two kinds of people, and the kind who don't.

    by upstate NY on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:33:44 AM PDT

    •  do what we did (0+ / 0-)

      not trying to make this a commercial, but this product:

      http://www.harmsco.com/...

      is freaking amazing. not some rinky-dink system with $150 cartridges and insufficient thruput for a family, but an industrial grade, made in the USA galvanized steel solution with fantastic 5 micron megafilters that cost $50 each and last for 2+ years.

      note, we installed ours in our basement, with 3/4" ball vales permitting us to bypass the filter for cleaning or lawn irrigation.

  •  I drink lots of water everyday (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman, hegemony57

    no colas unless it is mixed with rot-gut whiskey, and I have been doing this since I was in highschool.  Drinking lots of water is a good way to shed pounds and when you work out water keeps your muscles from cramping.  I would normally re-fill the plastic bottle with water untill the water inside started to taste funny(now I know that funny taste was actually bad for me). So I have contributed to this problem for a while now.

    But 3 months ago we bought those aluminum water canteens that you see on the teevee, but this one is not lined.  The day that it arrived in the mail was the day I stopped buying water in a plastic bottle and have not bought a single plastic water bottle since then.  And the water inside the metal canteen always tastes good and fresh unless I leave it sitting outside for a while, then I pour it out and re-fill it.  I carry the canteen with me like a carry a canvass bag with me everywhere I go, plus the canteen has a clip I can fasten to my beltloop on my pants.  Win-win.

    "To the corruptions of Christianity, I am indeed opposed; but not to the genuine precepts of Jesus himself." Thomas Jefferson

    by meatwad420 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:34:46 AM PDT

  •  L.A. water tastes bad, (0+ / 0-)

    with all the chlorine, but I just use a Brita filter.  

    •  Depends on where you live (0+ / 0-)

      Water in the LA area is not homogeneous. There are a lot of different sources and different water districts have very different mixes.

      Where the water comes from also changes over time.

      The water here in Claremont used to be dreadful - so much sediment it would settle out and stain porcelain in fairly short order. And it literally reeked of chlorine. A home filter helped some, but not enough.

      But sources have changed and things are much better now. Much less sediment and chlorine. As a result the tap water is quite drinkable.

      The water in neighboring towns used to be better. Now I can't tell the difference most of the time.

  •  The best way to get minerals is by drinking (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DefendOurConstitution

    REAL mineral water.  I have no idea if the mineral water I drink is real.

    However, for me it's all about taste.

    Tap water tastes awful.

    Evian tastes bland.

    Fiji water is good for being in plastic.

    My favorite is S.Pellegrino, it really quenches my thirst.  I prefer the glass bottles over plastic since plastic alters the flavor for me.

    (My true favorite is Antipodes but it is very hard to find.)

    Expensive?  Yes.

    Water is like wine to me, it's all about taste.

    •  Well, from a holistic perspective the purchase of (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      steelman, navajo, xysea

      water in plastic (or glass) bottles is just not a sustainable practice.  The amount of energy used to create the container and transport the H2O (in the case of San Pelligrino from Italy) leads us away from a dynamic equilibrium to higher levels of entropy.

      On the political scale the shift away from municipal tap water (public) for drinking and towards privatized water (e.g. Evian, Perrier, SP, Poland Springs, etc.) is similar to the move away from a committment to public (universal) education and the current fight against universal (public option) health care.

      As a matter of social welfare it seems that public expenditures for safe water, education, and health are right at the top of the list and should not be undermined by public policy or encouraged by commercial behavior.

      My 2 cents.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:00:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  When I first read this headline (0+ / 0-)

    I thought it was about the story of SIGG lying about their water bottles NOT having BPA.
    http://wake.mync.com/...

  •  Egomania & conspicuous consumption (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    condorcet, xysea

    We are a nation in love with the rich, we all want to be the rich and in whatever way possible, we like to prove to each other that we are rich. (Rich enough to tote around little personal bottles of water, at least.) Is there some reason no one can wait till they get where they're going to drink?* Oh - no one's watching, then....

    Look at me - I can afford $5 coffee!

    I guess we could ban sales of Mercedes & Porsches, too. Ban makeup, plastic surgery, and dress everybody in identical sack-clothes. It sounds good to me, but you're fighting programming that's been going on on for generations - we worship piggishness, it is our national character (as foreigners point out, frequently). Without self-indulgence, life is so empty.....

    *("re-hydrate", 'scuse me)

    When brains are outlawed, only liberals will have brains.

    by David Mason on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:47:35 AM PDT

  •  Not all bottled water is the same (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    user1000

    Bottled municipal tap water and spring water are two entirely different things - and very easy to tell apart.  

    On the rare occasion I drink bottled water, it's because I want spring water.

  •  I worked for a startup desalination company (0+ / 0-)

    years ago in Boston. At one point, we tested Boston tap water, Perrier (the rage at the time), and various other bottled waters for many different chemicals. The tap water met all standards. Many of the bottled water brands were worse.

  •  This is another attempt at a Government takeover (0+ / 0-)

    by the Obama Administration! Obama wants government run water systems! (Oops! that is what we have and we do have some of the cheapest and best drinking water in the world! So much for government bashing.)

    Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

    by DefendOurConstitution on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 07:55:10 AM PDT

  •  I'd rather people drink bottled water (0+ / 0-)

    Than bottled soda.  Soda is way worse because it creates long term health care costs for society.

    Face it: bottled water is convenient, especially for sports and picnics.  It's widely available. It's not too expensive.  And people like it!  i'd rather aim our energies elsewhere.   So what if it's purified municipal water? It's still good for you.

    Personally, I have gotten into the habit of taking refillable sports bottles with me to the gym or to tennis.  

    •  For me the issue isn't between drinking bottled (0+ / 0-)

      water or drinking bottled soda.  The issue is whether we are ready to make personal decisions about sustainable living that walks us back from the breakneck speed high entropy we've introduced into the planetary support system (bioshpere).

      The shift away from municipal water systems also has a pernicious impact on the general ideal of social welfare.  We move money and resources away from public services towards private corporate interests.

      This process is analagous to our movement away from a committment to public (universal) education and the difficulty we are now having getting the public option (a way to get universal care) into health care reform legislation.

      As a general rule I would say that social welfare depends on certain public services (goods) among which are safe drinking water, universal (public) education, and universal (public) health care.

      No quarter. No surrender.

      by hegemony57 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The County of San Mateo (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shanikka

    no longer buys bottled water for its employees (ie. the ubiquitous water cooler) or supplies it in meetings. I believe pitchers of tap water are the norm.

    Thank you, San Mateo County

  •  Great Diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman

    Lewis Black did a comedy routine some time ago pointing out that we had all been took by the bottled water scam.  He actually did a good job of walking through how first we were persuaded about a "medical fact" that turns out not to be true

    That we NEED 8 glasses (64 ounces) of water a day, minimum, to be healthy.

    He argued (through comedy) that children did just fine growing up not worrying about how much water they drank and our parents didn't worry about it either.  It was only after increased water consumption at the 8-glasses a day level became linked by marketing to health that the bottled water industry really took off (because it was portable and therefore folks could take it with them to drink.)

    It's one thing to drink bottled water in areas where it is clear the water is risky (i.e. sorry, I won't drink anything but bottled water south of the border; one case of Montezuma's Revenge/dysentery is enough for me in a lifetime) but otherwise? It's just silly.

    If one really needs the feel or convenience of a bottle, there are lovely sports bottles which one can fill up from the tap.  I do it all the time. Works great.  Tastes filling.

    •  They fail to take into account (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      condorcet

      the water content of the food you eat for one thing.  I eat so many fruits and veggies I need about 4 extra ounces of water a day to make my 'quota'.  

      It is true that sometimes you're thirsty instead of hungry and if you're dieting it's good to have some water and wait ten mins or so to determine if you're still hungry.

      But in whole, yeah it's crazy.

      We're all one heartbeat away from Forever. kasandra.us

      by KS Rose on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:40:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Detailed analysis of costs of bottled water & tea (0+ / 0-)

    My Cook for Good newsletter addressed this last week. Read the numbers on the Good Drinks page.

    The twelve-pack of bottled "iced" tea cost $6.93. Each bottle held 16.9 fluid ounces of tea. I did the math and found that I could make the same amount of tea using a national brand of tea bags for only 54 cents! That's a savings of $6.39 for boiling a little water.

    I found that the difference between bottled water and tap water was even more outrageous, of course.

  •  When I worked for the Park Service (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lisastar

    We often had to dig our water out of cattle watering holes in the backcountry--stagnant, green, muddy, full of cow patties.  We'd draw about five gallons, strain out the algae and mud in a cheesecloth, treat with iodine for the cryptosporidium, and then filter with ceramic-cartridge filters.  Never once got so much as a bellyache.

    In our base cabin, which was near a tiny creek, we had a ten-gallon countertop filter.  You'd pour the water in the top where there were five ceramic cartridges and it would trickle through to the bottom and come out pure.  The thing was from the sixties I think, and it worked just fine--no one ever got sick until one guy brushed his teeth with water that had been sitting in an old solar shower (the dope--we had to take him out on a mule).

    I'd say that for anyone who's worried about their municipal water, find one of those large units and keep it full.  I've trusted them with my whole intestinal tract and never been disappointed.  They have no moving parts and the filters can be revivified with a scrubby pad. You don't need the iodine unless you're worried about the fecal matter of livestock, but if you are, put it in the water before the filters where it can kill the bad stuff and then be filtered out before it gets to your lips.

    Voila!  Pure, sweet-tasting water!

    We demand that you set up a delicious buffet.

    by Dan Gallo on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:02:56 AM PDT

  •  Maybe YOUR tap water is OK (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lisastar, IreGyre, aggie98

    but I get...ahem...intestinal issues...when I drink the tap water from Seattle, Portland, or Austin where I now live.

    The municipal (spell check 2nd graf after the fold) water supply is full of nasty things that mess with my body.

    I have cut back from bottled to filtered (Brita), but only because someone else is buying it for me. Otherwise, I guess I'd just have diarrhea every week.

    Bottled water has issues, but municipal water supplies are far from perfectly potable. Let's talk some time about the numerous kinds of prescription drugs they find in our water supply because the filters don't catch them all. And in Texas where I now live, the oil and gas industry keeps pumping chemicals into the ground to frack out natural gas. They insist it isn't affecting the aquifers. Right. Go read some of Texas Sharon's diaries here or on Texas KAOS or Burnt Orange Report for the real story on how safe our drinking water is.

    I recycle when I can and try to do my part for saving water, our most precious natural resource. But how about improving the municipal water supplies' quality levels at the same time. Until then, please don't take away all our bottled water. Some of us can't drink that crap coming out of the tap.

    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:05:08 AM PDT

    •  Seattle water is ok with me (0+ / 0-)

      but when I go home to greasy tasting Jacksonville,FL it's bottled or filtered.

      Dennis Kucinich was right.

      by lisastar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:32:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It was more likely my building (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        lisastar

        not the whole city water supply.

        I lived near downtown, in a building that was more than 100 years old and had plumbing issues. They finally had to gut the whole thing and put in new pipes and cleaned it all up, but I don't live there now.

        "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

        by Brooke In Seattle on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:47:33 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  This one size fits all kind of diary upsets me (4+ / 0-)

    as it assumes that everyone has municipal water and sewer. I have a well, not municipal water, and it has arsenic in it at levels above the drinking water standard. I buy spring water in 5 gallon carboys.

    "The greatest service which can be rendered any country is to add an useful plant to its culture" -- Thomas Jefferson

    by tommurphy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:06:30 AM PDT

    •  When you KNOW you are doing all you can (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tommurphy, xysea

      to reduce waste and reduce our carbon footprint then there's no reason to be upset.

      For everyone else, and that's probably 99%, we need to look at our behavior regarding bottle water. The rest of us "need" to be upset.

      Americans throw away, and do not recycle, 38 billion plastic water bottles each year.

      We work in the dark. We do what we can. We give what we have. Our doubt is our passion. Our passion is our task. The rest is the madness of art.

      by cultural worker on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:14:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  The cost of pollution... (0+ / 0-)

      How did the arsenic get in your well?

      •  It's naturally occuring in this area (0+ / 0-)

        The level is just above the threshold, but since I have kids we are drinking bottled spring water.

        "The greatest service which can be rendered any country is to add an useful plant to its culture" -- Thomas Jefferson

        by tommurphy on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:30:28 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  How to make your own "bottled" water (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman

    Is really very easy, especially if you start with municipal water.  I clean up water for a living.   You can install an under-sink filter in less than an hour and mount the tap next to your sink faucet.

    CUNO / 3M makes a good product. Sells under the Whirlpool name. (I don't do residential purification sales, and have no interest in this product).

  •  Has anyone noticed the root problem in all of (0+ / 0-)

    these stories are the gullible and paranoid people who buy the stuff?

    P.T. Barnum never knew that "Give the people what they want" could be taken so far to the extremes we have.

    Bottled fucking water, with a cigarette in the other hand, and a Big Mac with Fries on the table.

    Gotta love this country.

    George Orwell is banging on the lid of his coffin and screaming, "1984 was a cautionary tale, you dolts, not a motivational speech!"

    by snafubar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:12:30 AM PDT

  •  A fine example (0+ / 0-)

    of how fear is a powerful marketing tool.  

  •  I get the point, but (0+ / 0-)

    I stopped drinking municipal water when I was pregnant, and a report came out that people drinking that water had a higher chance of miscarriage.

    The city water often smells like a swimming pool.  I never get that with bottled water.  So, I'm not going to change.

    But, I do it responsibly, I recycle my bottles through my daughter's school, so I help the environment, and I help pay for teachers for the community.

    •  But if they are just bottling municipal water (0+ / 0-)

      and now you are in PET from the plastic AND missing out on the fluoride for your teeth.. how are you better off?

      Not to mention the planet.  It's nice that you recycle, not so nice that you are stealing water from Michigan's great lakes...

      We're all one heartbeat away from Forever. kasandra.us

      by KS Rose on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:33:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  European mineral water in Europe (0+ / 0-)

    I remember in France decades ago....One drank mineral water for the minerals and because the tap water was of dubious quality and unpleasant taste.

    Mineral water was also a bit of a luxury.

    Here, the bottled water I'd like to see in every home is the emergency barrel that never goes bad.....in case of disaster.

    Media Reform Action Link http://stopbigmedia.com/

    by LNK on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:20:38 AM PDT

  •  Totally for socialized water (0+ / 0-)

    I usually bring that point up to my conservative friends too...you know, you're opposed to socialized medicine, but socialized water...and electricity...and roads...and military...those are ok?

    Penn & Teller's Bullshit did a very good and very funny segment on bottled water once.

  •  Hey Ken -- (0+ / 0-)

    in general I agree with you and with Derrick Jackson.

    However, I have a chemical allergy, or sensitivity, to chlorine.

    I can't swim in a public pool and I can barely take a shower in Las Vegas, much less drink the water.

    Ergo, I can drink unchlorinated tap water -- not available everywhere -- or bottled seltzer water. No, I'm not going to wheeze my way through life.

    My house is on well water which ain't the greatest for drinking because of high iron content. We do use it for coffee and cooking.

    Since I don't drink beer, more than about 6 diet cokes a year, or any other sort of throwaway-container soda or energy drink or juice box or what-have-you, and I recycle and return the water bottles, I'm doing the best I can.

  •  Always seemed silly to me (0+ / 0-)

    Like babies sucking on bottles. Besides, I couldn't afford it.

    Everything must go!

    by moltar on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:34:03 AM PDT

  •  tap water not so good here... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman

    i bought one of those doodad things that measure how 'dirty' your drinking water is. my tap water was over 400 ppm - my bottled water - 6ppm. my tap water smells of chlorine. and we all know chlorine is a toxin.

    i tried to go green with a water filter - turned out cost more than i could afford.

    i diligently recycle my plastic - is all i can do to stay as healthy as i can while being as green as i can be...

    i wish we could drink tap like we used way back in a day...

  •  Used to drink seltzer from bottles (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    betson08

    Now I have a home soda maker which uses two refillable bottles that you don't throw away or send to a recycling plant. Thanks for the diary.

  •  Post ignores big problems (0+ / 0-)
    * Lead in water, other chemicals, antibiotics, msytery chemicals (which, for instance, make male fish have eggs in some cases). Even filtered, is that stuff safe? Filter manufacturers like to brag about how their filters remove 99% of certain chemicals. But how much can you trust that?


    * Obesity and diabetes. Kids drinking fizzy flavored bottled water is a BETTER alternative to soda. And many kids will simply choose soda if there's no other choice.


    * At home filtered water is great (if you live in an area without dangerous tap water) but what about on the go? What about school drinking fountains with lead pipes?



    I think we can't ignore the horrendous pollution and dangers to human health from our water supply. It's just not as easy to say "drink tap water" and problem is solved.


    I'm an environmentalist, and not in a "developmental stage" anymore. Small traces of lead wont' do me much harm. So I drink tap water filtered whenever possible. But I wouldn't let young children or pregnant women drink it.

  •  dont include perrier though (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    betson08

    I legitimately like sparkling water much more than still water, so even when our society abandons its silly obsession with bottled water, i hope that all seltzer and carbonated water markets survive.

    It is not upon you to finish the Work, but neither shall you, O child of freedom, refrain from it.

    by DoGooderLawyer on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 08:57:18 AM PDT

  •  muni is our pal. (typo) (0+ / 0-)

    Most bottled water is simply packaged municiple water.

    oops.

    "I can haz healthcare?"

    by stagemom on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:01:57 AM PDT

  •  Water water water (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lenzy1000

    is a very hot topic these days.

    I don't drink bottled water. I have a filter on my faucet, because there is stuff in the water. Especially if you have old plumbing.
    I use glass jars to carry my water around in.

    The day I stopped drinking tap water straight was the day I say plumbers repairing my neighbor's water risers in the next apartment. The pipes through which the water runs had an inch-thick lining of disgusting sludge.

    So even if you don't mind the chlorine and residue in the water, the sludge is really horrible.

    Also, the plastic most waters are bottled in leach chemicals into the water after being shipped in hot trucks and sitting around for a while. Definitely not healthy. That makes for a kind of dead water that isn't very hydrating.

    "If religion is the opiate of the masses, then fundamentalism is the amphetamine." Miz Vittitow

    by MillieNeon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:08:12 AM PDT

  •  EVIAN backward spells NAIVE (NT) (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman

    "If religion is the opiate of the masses, then fundamentalism is the amphetamine." Miz Vittitow

    by MillieNeon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:09:21 AM PDT

  •  Water out of the air (0+ / 0-)

    Ed Schultz had this guy on his recession buster segment last week. http://www.villagegreenmkt.com/...

    .20 a gallon for electricity. Water is run through several filters and sterilized with UV. About $1400 to buy the unit. You might be out of luck in places like Arizona though.

  •  Agree with the water issue but what about soda? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Pozzo

    If there are no water fountains around, and I'm someplace where I haven't brought my own water container, I still want the option of water in the soda machine. I really don't want to drink the sugar or artificial sweeteners.

    I say this because for years I wished the soda machine at my university had water - the fountains on campus were just too gross and had too little water pressure for me.

    I now have a metal water bottle that I try to remember to carry, and have always used filtered (PUR, not Brita) water at home.

    I"m wondering how much water soda production uses? I know there's a village in India that had it's water table dangerously lowered by a local Coca Cola plant.

  •  For those complaining about their municipal water (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jennifree2bme

    supply, please consider the following statistics:

    Worldwide, 1 out of 6 people—1 billion people—have no reliable source of drinking water. 3,000 children a day die from diseases from tainted water.

    Sort of puts it in perspective, doesn't it?

    We work in the dark. We do what we can. We give what we have. Our doubt is our passion. Our passion is our task. The rest is the madness of art.

    by cultural worker on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:20:10 AM PDT

  •  No problem with bottled water (0+ / 0-)

    I realize where it comes from. I just find it to be a healthier alternative to soda when I am on the go. That's it. No magic behind it.

  •  How it it safer? (0+ / 0-)

    Some will say bottled water is safer than tap water, right?  Except if it is simply tap water, how is that possible

    ?

    Well, if its purified/filtered it could be safer. Also, there's no danger of a chemical containation of the water table.

  •  Poland Spring is *not* tap water (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Prinny Squad, liberal shopper

    and, yes, I can absolutely taste the difference between it and my tap water (which I can't with, say, Dasani).

    DKos: The left's home for sanctimonious defeatism since 2008.
    "The last time we broke a president, we got Reagan"--Bush Bites

    by ChurchofBruce on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:34:24 AM PDT

  •  Apart from convenience, (0+ / 0-)

    I don't understand why anybody who lives in NYC would use bottled water. New York City's tap water is the best tap water I have ever had.

    I would most def pay to get NYC tap water shipped to me.

    Justice cannot be for one side alone, but must be for both. --Eleanor Roosevelt

    by xndem on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:36:12 AM PDT

  •  Your tap may be fine, but-- (0+ / 0-)

    How do you like lead? You can fill up on some of this fine D.C. water, if you'd like

    Some will say bottled water is safer than tap water, right?  Except if it is simply tap water, how is that possible?

    Great, now try my argument:
    "The Earth is a cube. Some will say that the Earth is round. But how is that possible, if it is actually a cube?"

    ZING! I WIN! See, I relied upon assuming the truth of my original premise as evidence for my argument. Genius, right? Except that no one with a brain will take me seriously without some actual evidence to support my claim--unless they just vaguely agreed with my sentiment in the first place and prefer truthiness to truth (see reclist).

    I don't buy much bottled water. I generally filter my water, and the difference in sediment is very noticeable. If you think that's bullshit, I suggest you stop whatever it is you do to kill your taste buds and olfactory receptors.

    The problem with bottled water is the same as the problem with bottled soda--you should be reusing these containers, or using reusable ones, because they last forever in landfills and it takes energy to recycle them rather than repurpose them. Are you suggesting that anyone who doesn't set up a soda fountain in his or her home is a sucker, too? Because buying bottled water is no more harmful for the environment than buying bottled coke--the only difference is that you can potentially filter and refill your own water. But if you are standing in a 7-11, looking at drinks, there is no moral or practical difference between picking up a Dasani versus a bottle of fluorescent Mountain Dew X-TREEM Elf Magic.

    So really, shouldn't you be railing against the use of such a large number of disposable containers in general, rather than spreading the plain falsehood that bottled water is the same as tap water? If you want to be heard, get your message right.

    Or come drink some of my tap; after admiring its fine pinkish hue, you may appreciate its faint bouquet of chlorine. Then proceed to sample the subtle sweetness of its heavy metals. Mmm, heavy metals. Please, don't stop with one glass--fill up a to-go bottle. Have some city water, and be youse a educate why our kids not learning. Otherwise, stop touting your superior beverage morals.

  •  Wise advice (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    steelman

    to skip the bottled water.

    But for those who are not on a municiple water supply, it's also wise to invest in a quality water filtration system.  The high upfront cost is still less than the cost of bottled water.

    In virtually any rural area, well water is contaminated with agricultural runoff and should be considered unsafe.  Peer-reviewed research has revealed a correllation between agricultural contaminants and, among other things, shrunken testicals in teenage boys.  I'm also convinced that in the rural Michigan area where I live the ground water is contaminated with Teh Stoopid.

    Of course municiple water will sap one's precious bodily fluids, so it's wise to filter that, too!

    "When I was an alien, cultures weren't opinions" ~ Kurt Cobain, Territorial Pissings

    by Subterranean on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 09:53:06 AM PDT

  •  You know how ridiculous (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raster44, condorcet

    i used to feel hauling trailers full of bottled water?

    I'd go to a factory in the boonies that got its water from the same place local municipalities get theres. Treated it in a facility just like local municipalities treeat theirs. Poured it into bottles in the factory after which we'd take it to a distribution center like walmart dc's etc where it would be shipped off again to the stores that dc served. WATER.

    I always felt like cracking up from the moment i got the load. People are nuts.

  •  the water in Boston is pretty good (0+ / 0-)

    i am refilling/reusing glass Nantucket Nectar bottles.

    i was refilling plastic bottles for a while until I began to worry about ingesting too much plastic.

    it's amazing how much money I was spending on bottled water, just for the convenience of the container.

    filling up little bottles of water and putting them in the fridge overnight has done the trick.

    I read Derrick Jackson's column today and was glad to see it diaried here.  He deserves to be a household name in my opinion.

    Politics is like driving. To go backward, put it in R. To go forward, put it in D.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 10:02:19 AM PDT

  •  Bottled water = pet rock /nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raster44, condorcet
  •  Uh, no. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shmuelman, Sun dog, aggie98, Prinny Squad

    Bottled water isn't "simply" tap water.

    My tap water is brown.

    My bottled water isn't.

    Sorry, this diary is a FAIL.

  •  We've become so programmed by advertisers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    raster44

    that this many people will buy water for about 100x what they could get it for otherwise, because of how its packaged.

    And there's no proof bottled water is safer. Bottled water is not regulated by the EPA, but by the FDA. Last I heard, the FDA had "less than one" person monitoring the quality of bottled water, meaning some poor over-worked schmuck tries to monitor the quality of all the nation's bottled water companies while he/she is doing other duties as well.

  •  High levels of lead in water . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    user1000

    That controversy in the 2000s in the DC area probably had more to do with anything in increased bottled water sales -- especially in terms of large 5 gallon bottles (which are recycled once emptied).

  •  Germany *re-uses* bottled water bottles (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    xysea

    They have durable hard plastic 1 L bottles with a steep deposit on them. People buy them by the crate and bring them back. They are cleaned and reused.

    Also, water tends to be carbonated and mineral rich.

    One fact the author ignores is that mineral content in water is good for you. Purified, distilled water is nutrient-poor and less healthful.

    I'm not aware of any way to add back in or replace these minerals.

    But I wish all the mineral/carbonated water didn't come from Europe. Don't we have any natural mineral springs in the USA?

  •  There's always going to be bad unsafe tap water (0+ / 0-)

    just as there's always bad, unsafe examples of bottled water.

    So...let's just call that one a push for lack of evidence on all sides.

    Then it becomes a cost and environmental issue...pay 100x more for water you could be getting free (and filtering if you're that concerned with it) and fill up landfills with plastic bottles.

    Not seeing the logic of it...

  •  Mineral Water can be less healthy (0+ / 0-)

    There was an expose of mineral water on TV here in the mid-90's. They tested the quality of the big selling mineral water and had more bacteria than the maximum allowed under EU law. I think every one they tested exceeded this limit. By contrast tap water is safe, of course there's a little risk in everything but I'll take my chances

    British bottled water is almost always mineral water, not tap water. There was a big "scandal" when Pepsi co. launched Desani and Murdoch owned The Sun made a big fuss that they were using tap water (albeit purified). The coverage was so damaging that the brand disappeared almost overnight.

    I never buy bottled water and I only use tap water to make tea or when I'm exercising, even then I reuse an old evian bottle my dad was throwing out.

  •  I have never bought bottled water (0+ / 0-)

    Only when I'm in a third world country do I buy them. It has been a scam from day one. If I had to pay for water, I would be spending about $6-7 per day. I never understand when I see obese people walk out of super markets with tons of bottle water.

    •  I'd rather..... (0+ / 0-)

      See obese people walking out with bottled water, rather than soda.  In fact I rarely see obsese people with water, usually it's soda or soft drinks.

      Not everyone likes their tap water.  My tap water has arsenic in it.  When I buy bottled water, it is usually Ozarka spring water or occasionally flavored filtered water....much healthier than soft drinks.  

  •  Our tap water has a lot of chlorine (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sun dog

    You CAN taste the difference between our tap water and the bottled water. The tap water is very chlorinated. It is unpleasant to drink unless it is filtered. The filters can end up being just as expensive as buying bottled water, though I imagine using them has less environmental impact.

  •  Sometimes I drive a truck... (0+ / 0-)

    And pissing in a bottle and throwing it on the side of the road is a lot less expensive than burning the fuel to stop a semi and then get it rolling every couple of hours.

    Not all water bottles make it to the landfill. They sit on the sides of the road fermenting the contents.

    http://hubpages.com/...

    •  So true! (0+ / 0-)

      When I was a Scoutmaster, we had a 5 mile stretch of roadway that we would clean up every two weeks during good weather. It was a major truck route and we put up signs to let motorists know that the scouts were working, picking up trash. Amazing how few drivers would slow down until the county sheriff gave a few speeding tickets. Their flashing lights were there from then on. Your piss containers were a definite hazard that the scouts encountered. Made them wear both rubber and cotton gloves to pick up the trash. One guy in a panel truck threw out trash just after passing the scouts. Little did he know I had a car phone and called ahead with his license number as I was right behind the scouts with my flashers on in the company van. His little joke cost him dearly. This was back in the 80's. No cells!

      Amazing the Time I waste Here! Sometimes it's not wasted though!

      by raster44 on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:36:49 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Is This Snark? (0+ / 0-)

      If it isn't snark, why not simply pour the contents of the bottle into a urinal at the next stop that you make, rinse out the bottle, and either reuse it for the same purpose further down the road, or place it in a recycling bin once emptied and rinsed?

  •  I hate this line (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lrhoke

    Most bottled water is simply packaged municiple water

    While there is plenty of bs in bottled water marketing, tap water is not simply packaged municiple water.  It is, at least, filtered.  It doesn't taste awful like most municiple water in the country.  If you want to talk about improving drinking water, fine.  But don't start spouting (pun intended, I'm afraid) bs on the other side of the bottled water argument.

    For my family, instead of buying thousands of bottles which would be nuts or exchanging 5 gallon jugs all the time which is kind of nuts too, we have found an on tap filter does a very nice job of making our water taste good.  We drink a lot more water and so do our kids when our water tastes good.  That's good for us.

    As for bottles in the store, they come in handy once in a while in a pinch, on the road and such.  The few that we use get thrown in our recycling bin.    

    Let's just lay off the hyperbole in the debate, ok?  It doesn't actually help clear anything up.  

    "An open mind means searching for facts, not ignoring them in the interest of fairness."

    by Sun dog on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:12:20 PM PDT

  •  Very uplifting diary. (0+ / 0-)

    Well written, and insightful. Derrick Jackson is a great voice on this issue. Masterful.

    "...And finally, whether or not there was an exit strategy." --G.W. Bush (1999 First Gore-Bush debate.)

    by caseyaaronsmith on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:22:05 PM PDT

  •  I buy my bottled water in (0+ / 0-)

    re-usable five gallon bottles that I sit on top of a non-electric dispenser.  Basically it's a ceramic crock with a spigot.  The water company delivers as many bottles as I request for about $30.00 per month, and I fill my "take-along" water bottle (also reusable and recyclable) from the crock.  The water from our tap is chlorinated and not pleasant to drink, and I worried that neither I nor my husband was really drinking enough water on a daily basis before we started getting the water delivered.  But I'm not comfortable with buying individual plastic bottles, even though we recycle them.  This was the best compromise I could come up with.  At least the five gallon bottles get picked up and re-used, and the delivery is only once a month, so there are not multiple trips to the store for water.  The other reason I like to have the water delivered is that when we got walloped by hurricaine Isabel, we were without water for a number of days (I forget how many) and I'd rather be prepared in advance for an event like that, without having to run around at the last minute.  

    It would probably be better, and possibly more cost-effective to install a whole-house water filtration system.  That wouldn't do anything for emergency planning, however, and frankly we don't have the money to invest in such a sytem at the moment.  So that, solar panels, and a geo-thermal heating/cooling system will have to wait until we're able to afford them.

    'The votes are in, and we won.' - Jim Webb, 11/07/2006

    by lcork on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:29:19 PM PDT

  •  I have 3 sizes of steel water bottles (0+ / 0-)

    that I fill at the tap and partially freeze for hot days.  They even have this neat hole in the top that lets me carry it by one finger.

    Or.. check this out: ecoblue

    We're all one heartbeat away from Forever. kasandra.us

    by KS Rose on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:45:49 PM PDT

  •  At the store I work at (0+ / 0-)

    we sell 140 24 packs of Nestle water a day. A DAY.
    That doesn't even begin to cover the list of the other brands of water we carry. It is being filled all day and all night long.

    I don't understand, why do you try to make hatred and intolerancy justified? Just tear down your ignorance and open your eyes. ---The Cruxshadows

    by Rubicon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:49:55 PM PDT

  •  We need some satirical advertisements (0+ / 0-)

    that pitch a typical bottle of water, bearing the brand name "Tap Water." I could see some kind of spoof ad on Saturday Night Live or maybe even paid public service announcements. I wonder if NBC would consider dedicating one of their "The more you know" spots to the issue [runs off to check who their corporate overlords are], or not.

    Having abandoned my search for truth, I am now looking for a good sig line.

    by kaolin on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 12:56:32 PM PDT

  •  Bottled water is not a crime (0+ / 0-)

    "Chance favors the prepared mind"

    by tlemon on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:25:19 PM PDT

  •  One problem is that water is often contaminated.. (0+ / 0-)

    ... in ways that we simply have no certainty we can trust, and in some instances, we have data that suggests that we cannot trust it.

    Case in point ...
    EPA Fails To Inform Public About Weed-Killer In Drinking Water

    One of the nation's most widely-used herbicides has been found to exceed federal safety limits in drinking water in four states, but water customers have not been told and the Environmental Protection Agency has not published the results.

    Records that tracked the amount of the weed-killer atrazine in about 150 watersheds from 2003 through 2008 were obtained by the Huffington Post Investigative Fund under the Freedom of Information Act. An analysis found that yearly average levels of atrazine in drinking water violated the federal standard at least ten times in communities in Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Kansas, all states where farmers rely heavily on the herbicide.

    In interviews, EPA officials did not dispute the data but said they do not consider atrazine a health hazard and said they did not believe the agency or state authorities had failed to properly inform the public. "We have concluded that atrazine does not cause adverse effects to humans or the environment," said Steve Bradbury, deputy office director of the EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs.

    Studies of atrazine's potential links to prostate and breast cancer have been inconclusive. Based on the recommendations of its scientific advisory panels in 2000 and 2003, the EPA has listed atrazine as "not likely" to be a carcinogen but does officially consider it to be a potential hormone disruptor - a risk factor explored by researchers testing animals.

    In recent years atrazine has been the subject of intensive debate among scientists about its effects on the reproductive systems of frogs and other vertebrate animals. In some studies, male frogs that were exposed to high levels of atrazine have been documented to grow eggs.

    In 2004, the European Union banned atrazine because it was consistently showing up in drinking water and health officials, aware of ongoing studies, said they could not find sufficient evidence the chemical was safe.

    And, a friend of mine almost died from a micro-organism that infected his stomach and caused an ulcer, from drinking the water from the faucet in his building, WHICH WAS FOOLISH AND STUPID, which was probably/possibly caused by the rust or contaminants in the pipes themselves, so even if the ground water is clean from pollutants, this does not mean that the faucet water is safe to consume. Now, I know that there are numerous water purifying systems that one can add, and that one probably should add, and I am not an authority on them, but we all need to be aware of what the issues are and how safe these local purifying systems are.

    But, having said all of that, the very notion of bottled water as the primary means for providing drinking water to our public is the most inefficient strategy one can imagine.

    ~we study the old to understand the new~from one thing know ten thousand~to see things truly one must see what is in the light and what lies hidden in shadow~

    by ArthurPoet on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:33:07 PM PDT

  •  You can go to your local drugstore and get a (0+ / 0-)

    great big neck plastic bottle that you can use forever and it is safe to refill. It holds ice, you know how much you are drinking a day and you can carry it anywhere and fill it up. No drink cups to throw away either. i got one for my house, car and work.

    Support President Obama so that his coattails can carry progressives into Congress in 2010. Build on all success.

    by Plain Speaking on Tue Aug 25, 2009 at 02:36:22 PM PDT

  •  I like bottled water. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lrhoke

    I used to drink a Pepsi nearly every day, but I tried the berry-flavored water and I prefer it to Pepsi because it has no sugars. Sorry to be so politically incorrect, I just like it.

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