Negative Aspects of Bottled Water and the Choice Between Tap Water and Bottle Water

The article “Why Tap Water is Better Than Bottle Water” by Sovie Karlstron and Christine Dell’Amore, National Geographic’s Green Guides, discusses why the population should choose tap water over bottled water. According to the article, bottled water may actually be doing more harm than good. Dell’Amore and Karlstron bring awareness to the detriment brought to the environment by the production of water bottles in the article.

“Transporting the bottles and keeping them cold could also burn fossil fuels, which gives off greenhouse gases. And groundwater pumping by bottled water companies draws heavily on underground aquifers and harms watershed…” It then goes on and sheds light on the health costs of water bottles by stating that bottled water is not any safer than tap water because some of it is still defiled with untested industrial chemicals. Aside from the water itself, the plastic bottles are also detrimental to the population’s health due to the carcinogens filtrated into the water if used more than once.

With all the negative aspects that go hand in hand with bottled water, it is hard to believe more than $100 billion is spent globally, each year on bottled water. The Food and Drug Administration categorizes bottled water into two subdivisions: Spring or Mineral Water and Non-Spring or Mineral Water.

The article “Bottled Water VS Tap Water: an in Depth Comparison” by Filter Butler states that spring or mineral water is, “…bottled water that originates from an underground source which is not part of a community water supply and is fit for human consumption at its point of origin.” While on the other hand non spring or mineral water is, “…bottled water from any source treated for human consumption.”

I would have to agree with the article “Why Tap Water is Better Than Bottle Water” simply because most of our bottle water falls under the category of non-spring or mineral water and therefore is held to the same standards as our tap water. So we as people are paying for an ornamental label rather than quality of water most of the time and although we can read the fine print when purchasing bottled water to ensure it is authentic spring/mineral water, most of us do not take the time to do so when we are parched.

Subsequently, I studied another article entitled “Should You Drink Tap or Bottled Water?” located in the Health section on Scientific American. The author, House Call Doctor, Sanaz Majd spoke about an encounter she had while leaving the hospital after birthing her twins in which led her to do research on whether tap or bottled water is safer.

Her research provided why tap water is preferred by health care professionals and helped me hold a better stance on my position. Like the other two articles revealed, Dr.Majd spoke about the environmental impacts of bottled water, the bacterial content, health risks of the plastic bottles and the inflated costs; but, she brought one thing to my attention that other authors did not. Tap water has stricter regulations. “Bottled water is regulated by the FDA, and tap water by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency).

The EPA has tighter restrictions and inspection regimens, while the FDA has a less stringent disclosure of consumer information. The FDA is not requiring disclosure of bottled water sources, treatment processes, and any contaminant reports. If your tap water source is public, however, the EPA is required to send an annual water quality report to its residents disclosing this information.”

Overall, I would have to side with tap water. Not only is it less harmful to the environment and my body but it is not “sugar-coated”. I do not wish to pay $2 or more for a bottle of water that could possibly be the same water produced from my tap.

Citations

  • Majd S. Should You Drink Tap or Bottled Water? Quick and Dirty Tips. [accessed 2016 Sep 8]. http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/health-fitness/healthy-eating/know-your-nutrients/should-you-drink-tap-or-bottled-water
  • Bottled Water VS Tap Water: An In-depth Comparison. Filter Butler Blog. [accessed 2016 Sep 8]. http://filterbutler.com/blog/bottled-water-vs-tap-water-an-in-depth-comparison/

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