• Alyssa McLean

Tap Water vs. Bottled Water

Have you ever wondered where the water in your Dasani or other name brand water bottles comes from? Most people think that the water found in water bottles comes from fresh, untouched water, an image created by the countless labels that have a pristine spring in the background. “But no one should think that bottled water is better regulated, better protected or safer than tap,” says Eric Goldstein, co-director of the urban program at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). It's important to know that tap and bottled water both have their pros and cons.


Bottled water companies are not required to state where they get their water from. Some, in fact, do retrieve their water from natural springs, but according to CBC "The CBWA says less than eight percent of bottled water sold in Canada comes from municipal sources, but in the U.S., scientist Peter Gleick has estimated it's as much as 45 percent."


So why is it that the majority of Canadians and Americans choose bottled water over tap water. At this point, according to CBC it's because of taste and convenience, not health. As it turns out, tap water is more regulated than bottled water. Ottawa tests its water on average 125,000 times per year, checking for up to 300 chemicals, while bottled water is not subject to the same guidelines.


Bottled water may not have the same guidelines and in Canada, the majority comes from other sources other than municipal sources, so why do I still feel so strongly about drinking tap water instead of bottled water? It's because more often than not bottles are not recycled properly. It is one of the many pieces of trash that we find littered on our shorelines or in the streets and this can have a major effect on our environment.


Not only does it affect the environment that we live in but it also affects other things like our energy consumption and the use of other resources. According to Ban the Bottle, 17 million barrels of oil are used annually in the production of bottled water, that's minus the oil needed for transportation. Moreover, "the energy used would be enough to power 190,000 homes" and only 23% of all the water bottles used in the US end up being recycled, the rest land in our landfills and take 400 - 1,000 years to biodegrade.


These are only some of the many facts that convince me that it's better for me to drink tap water. It's also the reason I choose to complete a mosaic of water bottles forming a tap for my second analogical piece. I wanted to create a piece that could capture how some bottled water comes from tap water and the sheer amount of water bottles both Canadians and Americans consume. Within the mosaic, I choose to include water labels of well-known companies and well as factory scenes, wasted water bottles and large scale production. This was to bring attention to everything stated above. The second piece continues the water theme but focuses on another aspect of water.





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Bottled water vs Tap water


Sources:

https://www.rd.com/health/diet-weight-loss/rethink-what-you-drink/

http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/bottle-vs-tap-7-things-to-know-about-drinking-water-1.2774182

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