by Marion Nestle
Mar 11 2008

Bottled water vs. the environment

Bottled water is the target of environmental campaigns in the U.K as well as the U.S. My namesake, the Nestlé Corporation, appears to be under particular attack.  Acording to the British government, tap water “requires 300 times less energy than bottled water and does not create bottled packaging waste.”   I wonder how the company plans to rebut that argument. 

  • http://www.culinate.com Mark D.

    Sadly, they will rebut it by spending 300x more money then the governments on advertising/lobbying a completely different thing and try and change the subject….

    Just a guess…

  • Karen

    Interesting. I always thought the tap water in Europe was mostly undrinkable. Is it perhaps different in the UK? or am I just misinformed?

  • Robin

    If I can’t drink bottled water because it isn’t green and I can’t drink tap water because it’s contaminated with drugs and tastes of chlorine, what am I left with? Coke?

  • Charlotte

    Karen: I’m afraid you are misinformed… I’m French and I have had tap water in almost all EU countries. It’s fine.
    We also have electricity and shower daily ;)

  • Jenn

    But there are drugs in my tap water:

    http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/03/10/pharma.water1.ap/index.html

    So if they’re going to get miffed at Nestle, they’re really going to have get a little more Brita action going for tap water. Of course, Lord knows what drugs may be in bottled water, they haven’t tested it, so yeah, I’m guessing I’m stuck with Snapple.

  • Daniel Ithaca,NY

    Robin, you have a good point there. If not tap water or bottled water then what?
    Since much of the bottled water, at least that sold in the US, is just purified tap water, you could just purchase a good filter and filter your tap water to remove chlorine and other chemicals that were either missed by the filtration plant or were picked up somewhere between exiting the plant and going into your glass.
    It just takes a tremendous amount of energy to ship water from whatever far-off place it is bottled, to produce the bottles, and many of those bottles are not recycled. I think everyone wins when you re-use water bottles, cleaning them out and refilling them with filtered tap water.

  • Fentry