Have You Got The Bottle?

It’s plain to see throughout the media that we have become aware of how much damage plastics are doing to our environment. But what are we really doing about it?
Thanks to an up ward trend in health consciousness in the UK, and therefore the need to stay hydrated, we have created a bottled water industry in excess of £2.4 billion. With more than 20% of the UK drinking bottled water every day, that’s more than 7 billion single use plastic water bottles discarded every year. In 2017, bottled water outsold Coca Cola – we are talking here about water, not the new trend in flavoured Gin.

As part of his own crusade against single use plastics, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has tried to take on this multi billion pound industry by proving to the the general pubic – that’s you and me – that the UK’s drinking water from the household tap has the same and in some cases a better mineral content than the bottled water with a fancy label. Think about it for a moment, we are being asked to pay anything from £1 to £2 for a 500ml bottle of water, when we have, thanks to our local water authorities, a nigh on endless supply at the turn of a tap.

Then there’s that empty bottle, it takes about 400 years for it to decompose if it’s just discarded into the countryside – let’s face it, we’ve all seen these in hedgerows, floating on our rivers and canals, rolling down the street on a windy day.

Part of Hugh’s task has been to get petrol stations to provide a means to refill our bottles. Maybe if we all followed suit and requested this more often when we are out then it could become the norm. I don’t for one minute think that we are going to stop the sales of plastic wrapped water overnight. Nor do I think that it has to be banished completely, I’m sure there will always be circumstances where plastic bottles will be the only option to supply us with water (although I can’t think of any off hand).

There is a far bigger picture here than just single use plastic water bottles, in a world that is producing plastic faster than we can recycle it, it’s gradually entering our food chain in the form of microplastic particles directly affecting our health. This we will cover at a later date, for now however, we should narrow the focus down to our own individual usage. We could start by acquiring a suitable reusable drinking vessel and start taking advantage of sites like this https://refill.org.uk/ where businesses are already signing up to put their ‘Tap on the Map’.
Another company https://www.hydrachill.com/ is trying to supply machines to gyms etcetera, that dispense a reusable bottle that you pay for and then fill it with water. But there’s no getting away from the fact that while we as the consumers buy our water in plastic bottles, there will always be someone there willing to part us from our cash to sell us something we already have.acquiringThere is a far bigger picture here than just single use plastic water bottles, in a world that is producing plastic faster than we can recycle it, it’s gradually entering our food chain in the form of microplastic particles directly affecting our health. This we will cover at a later date, for now however, we should narrow the focus down to our own individual usage. We could start by purchasing a suitable reusable drinking vessel and start taking advantage of sites like this https://refill.org.uk/ where businesses are already signing up to put their ‘Tap on the Map’.
Another company https://www.hydrachill.com/ is trying to supply machines to gyms etcetera, that dispense a reusable bottle that you pay for and then fill it with water. But there’s no getting away from the fact that while we as the consumers buy our water in plastic bottles, there will always be someone there willing to part us from our cash to sell us something we already have.