Sunday, 24 June 2012

Plastic water bottles

Sites like this are common
in communities in the Northern Territory.
I live in an area visited by tourists. It can be hot and dry. Everyone is encouraged to stay hydrated by drinking good old-fashioned water. Or other enjoyable drinks. Beer is popular and so is coffee, but not at the same time.

I usually carry a water bottle in my handbag.  It is a re-usable bottle but probably does not get washed absolutely every evening when we wash the dishes. Maybe there is bacteria breeding in there, but maybe there is bacteria in most water supplies around the world.

According to the Plastics Division of the American Chemistry Council, most beverage bottles sold in the USA are manufactured from polyethylene terephthalate, a type of plastic determined safe to use and reuse by the US Food and Drug Administration. Some plastic bottles contain bisphenol A, or BPA, which is associated with a variety of health risks particularly if the plastic is heated. PET bottles may contain traces of hormone-disrupting chemicals associated with levels of estrogen. It is hard to know what is true.

Discarded bottles are a problem not just here where I live but in most countries. Why do people throw the empty waterbottle on the ground? Is it an outward show of power and influence? Is it intended to be a show of wealth? Is it intended to be an act of rebellion against the intellectuals and the greenies?

Why do so many people succumb to buying bottled water? It takes 3 bottles of water to manufacture 1 new bottle of water. It takes a quarter of a bottle of oil to manufacture one new bottle of water.

Recently there were some interesting facts about bottled water presented in a popular TV show called The Gruen Transfer. I recommend you watch this episode. It contains the discussion and some other matters related to selling a water based product.

There are several types of safe reusable water bottles.
I see many backpackers with these.
We are not able to recycle very many manufactured items here in Darwin due to our distance from manufacturers and the high cost of transporting freight. It has been tried. Plastic water bottles become an environmental problem as well as a hygiene issue and a visual scar.

Do you use a metal water bottle? Some other type of bottle specifically designed to be reused many times?

Here in Darwin the water quality is excellent. The water is free but the pipes and infrastructure cost money, so costs are passed on to home owners.

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