By Adrienne Cooper & Kristin Moore

1. Extraction

Water from lakes and rivers are brought into water reservoirs while the oil is extracted by drilling.

Each year 17 million barrels of oil are used to make the plastic for the bottles.

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2. Processing

The oil is refined. Next using the process of cracking (breaking large hydrocarbons into smaller pieces), oil is turned into plastic pellets of PET (Polyethylene terephthalate).

Water is purified.

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3. Munufacturing

Plastic pellets are molded into bottles using parison (a method with air pressure and heat) and taken to a bottling plant where they are filled with water.
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4. Usage

Used for drinking!
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5. Disposal

Most bottles are thrown in the trash and end up in a landfill. However, some are recycled and can be turned into fleece, carpet, more water bottles or other plastic items by the shredding, washing and melting of the recycled bottles.

At least 70% of water bottles are not recycled.

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The Life Cycle of a Water Bottle - Infographic

Fun Facts:

-On average, each American consumes 167 bottles of water each year.

-Americans consume over 8.6 billion gallons of bottled water.

-Water bottles can take between 400 and 1,000 years to decompose.


-Bottled water life cycle. (n.d.). Retrieved April 11, 2016, from http://www.nestle-waters.com/bottled-water/bottled-water-life-cycle

-What is the Life Cycle of a Plastic Bottle? (n.d.). Retrieved April 11, 2016, from http://www.wisegeek.org/what-is-the-life-cycle-of-a-plastic-bottle.htm

-Life cycle of a plastic water bottle | All media content | DW.COM | 07.01.2014. (n.d.). Retrieved April 11, 2016, from http://www.dw.com/en/life-cycle-of-a-plastic-water-bottle/g-17266360

-Cbalzano1. "The Life Cycle of a Water Bottle - Infographic." YouTube. YouTube, 2012. Web. 11 Apr. 2016. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=glAPkpeKvfE>.