Category: Environment
23Jan

It is becoming common knowledge that bottled water may not be the best choice. We have already proven that the quality of bottled water is no greater than tap water in most cases; especially when using a filtration system. We have also pointed out the environmental effects of bottled water, and the plastics they leave behind. So, what is next? How do we reduce our plastic bottle usage, while continuing to drink the amounts of water we need to be healthy?

Reusable water bottles! There are many alternatives, such as plastic, glass, metal, and even paper reusable bottles. Paired with a great filtration system these bottles eliminate the use of the single use plastic water bottles. There are many great bottle brands, but we have put together a list of some of our favorite reusable bottles.

  • Greens Your Color (greensyourcolour.com)

Green’s Your Color (GYC) is a Canadian based company that provides insulated bottles. The company launched in 2011 and now has a variety of designs and bottle sizes, ranging from 350ML to 800ML. Insulated bottles are great because the keep cold drink cold, and hot drink hot. One of our favorites from GYC is the 500 ML ‘ULTIMATE HORSEY!’ (TEAL) bottle. GYC also has accessories such as drinking spouts, ice strainers, tea strainers, and fruit infuser baskets to totally customize your bottle.

Hydro Flask; which was founded in 2009, is an American company based in Bend, Oregon. Hydro Flask offers bottles that are not only insulated, but also vacuum sealed. The vacuum seal allows it to keep cold drinks colder for longer, and hot drink hotter for longer. There ae reports that it keeps ice water cold for 24 hours (with ice still floating in it!) and coffee or tea hot for 12 hours. They also sell a variety of bottles designed for several usages such as coffee, beer, wine, and food.

Lifefactory is a California based company that fuses modern design, highest quality materials, and exceptional utility to produce a full line of BPA-free glass houseware products for everyday life. There glass bottles come with a silicone sleeve, that protects the bottle, make it easier to grip, and give it a nice visual aesthetic. They offer a variety of caps for the bottles to give a different drinking experience. Lifefactory also offers bottles designed for babies, and children (drinking water isn’t only for adults).  

Ecotech direct is an American Based company offering paper water bottles. Although these bottles are only semi reusable (eventually they become unusable) they are a great alternative to single use plastic bottles. Their bottles are recyclable, compostable, and biodegradable making them extremely environmentally friendly. The bottle’s outer shell is made of compostable pulp and an inner barrier is made of recyclable PET.

All of these are great alternatives to single use plastic bottles. They are perfect if you have a water filtration system in your home or at work. There are many other brands that are great. Let us know what your favorite is.

19Nov

Bottled water is great because it is convenient, but convenience also comes at a cost. The cost isn’t reflected in the price of bottled water, but someone is covering the bill, and that is the environment. Bottled water has continued to become cheaper over the years. We can easily find bottled water for less than $1 in many places. High end brands may add a premium for “added value” and even then, it is not too expensive, but what are the real cost?

When calculating the true price of bottled water, we must consider many things beyond how much it cost to put the water in the bottle. One of the first factors to consider is the amount of oil used in production, and transportation. Oil is a non-renewable resource, meaning we have a limited supply. With the production and distribution of every bottle we come closer to the day we no longer have oil deposits. Just supplying Americans with plastic water bottles for one year consumes more than 17 million barrels of oil, that is about the amount of oil used in 1.3 million cars annually!

Another thing to consider when calculating the actual price of bottled water is its long-term effect on the environment. Plastic water bottles are considered single-use plastics. Single-use plastics are plastic products used only used once before they are thrown away or recycled. In America people are consuming nearly 50 billion bottles of water every year, and less than 25% are being recycled. That leaves about 37 billion plastic bottles in the trash where they end up in landfills or in the ocean. Even in landfills plastics takes more than 200 years to degrade, and as they break down, toxic substances are released into the soil and waterways and enter the food chain.

When bottles are not even properly thrown away, they end up in the environment, and the price to clean-up is high. Millions of dollars are spent annually to remove single-use plastics from the environment. California alone spends an estimated $25 million annually to landfill discarded plastics, and public agencies spend more than $500 million annually in litter cleanup.

When plastics are left in the environment, they can be detrimental to plants and wildlife. Impacts of marine debris have been reported for 663 marine wildlife species. For example, researchers have found that 50%-80% of dead sea turtles have ingested plastic.

These are just some of the things to consider when calculating the real price of a water bottle. There are many studies that suggest bottled water has affects on human health as well. When you begin to consider all these factors you begin to realize the cost of bottled water is a lot higher than we are paying. Is the convenience worth the long-term affect to our health and the environment? Is it sustainable to spend billions on clean ups around the world each year?

Its already proven that bottled water is more expensive, and isn’t healthier than tap water, so why do we continue to use them? We continue to pay the cost of each water bottle long after it has been thrown away.  A simple solution to this problem is to switch to reusable water bottles and using home filtration systems. This will not only save the consumer money when purchasing water, but it will also reduce the price the environment is paying.

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