Plastic Water Bottles
Plastic Water Bottles are not Sustainable Over Time
What's the Problem with Plastic Water Bottles?
There are 3 problems with plastic water bottles are, the human impact, the animal impact and the environmental impact.
Plastic bottles contain Bisphenol A (BPA) which is a chemical that is used to make plastic hard and clear. Plastic water bottles are strongly linked to a host of health problems, such as certain types of cancer, neurological difficulties and defects in newborn babies.
Since plastic bottle caps are not recyclable, most of them end up in the stomachs of variety of animal species and at the bottom of the ocean. Many animals often mistake these small pieces of plastic as food. Marine life has a lot of problems with this on a daily basis.
An Albatross (a type of bird) was found dead on a Hawaiian island because it had a stomach full of 119 bottle caps!
Plastic bottles are made from petroleum, a product known as polyethylene terephthalate (PET). PET requires huge amounts of fossil fuels to both make and transport them. A mass number of plastic bottles are not recycled, which means they infiltrate the streets or end up in landfills. Even if people tried chopping the plastic water bottles into small pieces, it will take more than human lifetime to decompose ("What's the Problem with Plastic Bottles")!
Why Should Bottled Water be Avoided?
There are many reasons why people should not drink bottled water, but the top 3 are, they are not sustainable, bottled water is glorified tap water which costs 10,000 times the cost and bottled water contains toxins, even if mixed with BPA.
Plastic water bottles use vast quantities of fossil fuels and water. 6 out of 7 plastic water bottles in the United States are "down cycled." In other words, they are sent somewhere out of sight and mind. Plastic water bottles are manufactured, filled and shipped around the globe, which makes plastic water bottles a bad carbon footprint.
Glorified Tap Water Which Costs 10,000 Times the Cost:
Most plastic water bottles come from springs or groundwater sources. Approximately, 25% of bottled water are sourced from tap. Studies show that bottled water samples contain phthalates, mold, microbes, benzene, trihalomethanes and arsenic.
Bottled Water Contains Toxins, Even if mixed BPA:
Plastic is not only bad for the planet but it is also not good for people as well. Bottled water companies use BPA - free plastic, but in plastic bottles other chemicals can seep out if the bottles are exposed to heat or sit around for a long period of time. Some chemicals are possible endocrine disruptors ("7 Reasons To Drink Bottled Water Again").
Top 3 Reasons Why Plastic Water Bottles are not Sustainable
1. Growing Wasteland
Approximately 60 million plastic water bottles are used everyday in the United States! It is assumed that nearly 18,834,000,000 water bottles end up in landfills each year. Each water bottle can take up to 700 years to decompose ("BizEnergy.ca|Canada's business energy resource"). Approximately 36% of plastic water bottles are recycled with over 400 million entering landfills everyday ("Avoid bottled water")!
According to National Geographic Kids: when plastic bottles are thrown away, it will sit for hundreds of years without decomposing. Growing piles of plastic garbage and little threaten the wildlife and natural areas around it ("The Negative Effects of using Plastic Bottles")!
80% of water bottles people buy, do not get recycled. Most of them just end up in landfills instead. For every 10 bottles purchased, only 2 of them will get recycled ("The Disadvantages of Bottled Water").
2. High Financial Cost
A litre of tap water costs less than 1% of the cost a litre of bottled that costs over $2.50 per litre ("Avoid bottled water").
Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) reports that, 90% or more of the money consumers shell out pays for everything but the water itself. For example, the bottling, packaging, shipping, marketing, other expenses and profits ("Drinking from a Bottle Instead of the Tap Doesn't Just Hold Water").
8 glasses of water, (which is the recommended daily amount) costs about 50 cents out of the tap. But about $1,400 if you bought water bottles ("Plastic Water Bottle Causing Flood of Harm to Our Environment"). To produce a single one litre plastic bottle, it requires 7 litres of water and 1.5 mega - joules of energy ("Avoid bottled water")!
According to Environmental Working Group (EWG), bottled water costs up to 1,900 times more than tap water ("Drinking from a Bottle Instead of the Tap Just Doesn't Hold Water")!
3. Personal Health Risks to People
According to healthnews.org, the chemical compounds released by plastic bottles can alter hormones and have other potential human health effects ("BizEnergy.ca|Canada's business energy resource"). Studies have linked bisphenol A to prostate caner, miscarriages, and birth defects. It mimics the hormone estrogen and disrupts reproductive functions ("Plastic Pros and Cons| alive").
A new research published in Environmental International shows pregnant women exposed to bisphenol A (BPA) in high does can potentially lead to low birth weight in newborn children ("How harmful is it to drink from a plastic water bottle?").
An average adult ingests approximately 1 microgram of bisphenol A for every 2.2 pounds of body weight. Babies that drink from hard, plastic polycarbonate bottles ingest roughly 10 times that amount ("Harmful Effects of Plastic Bottles")!
Bisphenol A (known as BPA) is a chemical used during the manufacturing of certain hard, clear plastics. For example, reusable water bottles, baby bottles and sippy cups are made from BPA ("Plastic Pros and Cons|alive").
Animals (including more than 180 species) of which have been documented to ingest plastic debris, are also affected by the chemicals. The animals can also permanently be injured or die as a result of poison "BizEnergy.ca|Canada's business energy resource").
Many studies show that polycarbonate plastic, a type of plastic used in many household and food products, gradually leaches a chemical called bisphenol - A (BPA) into foods and liquids that are stored in containers made from this material ("BizEnergy.ca|Canada's business energy resource").