Message in a bottle: 3 negative impacts of bottled water

Recently I heard a disconcerting comment on the radio: The association of drinks wholesalers was complaining about the substantial revenue loss because restaurants, hotels and families are switching to (filtered) tap water. 

I could not believe my ears! Clearly this federation puts profit first and doesn’t think planet or think people at all.

Luckily the Belgian Hotel and Restaurant Association countered this one-sided view and spoke out in support of “various options and tastes.” To my taste, even their comments were not clear enough by far. So allow me to share my “message in a bottle” on bottled water.

Here are the three most worrying facts about the negative impact of bottled water:

Plastic: Globally, humans buy a million plastic bottles per minute. Only 1 out of 5 plastic bottles is recycled. The rest becomes litter, gets buried somewhere or ends up in the ocean. To get an idea of how much plastic this actually is, look at the photo below of the i-Themba tower in South Africa, which contains (only) 7,000 bottles.

The i-Themba tower in South Africa, made of 7,000 plastic water bottles
The i-Themba tower in South Africa, made of 7,000 plastic water bottles

Oil: It takes one-quarter liter of oil to make a 1-liter plastic water bottle. For the 1 million plastic bottles bought worldwide every minute, that’s 250,000 liters of petroleum (per minute!).

Water: It takes 3 liters of water to package a 1-liter plastic water bottle. So drinking tap or filtered water is a very smart way to immediately reduce the pressure on our natural water sources.

I know I said three, but I would like to add a fourth point:
Cost: Buying bottled water is about 700 times more expensive than drinking tap water, according to the American Water Works Company.

What is bottled water, anyway? Get great insight in this clip of the “Story of Stuff.”

At many Carlson Rezidor hotels around the world, you are offered a responsible water choice: from tap water in elegant carafes in our U.S. Radisson Blu hotels to filtered water on the breakfast buffet and in meetings & events in the Nordics and Western Europe.

If you’re looking for smart-looking, reusable bottle alternatives, check out one of these cool options:


Brita’s filter bottle 

The bobble 

… and many others.

Agreed, a choice for filtered water or tap water cannot be made everywhere. However, that should not stop us from “ditching the bottle” and drinking our “rainbow juice” smartly.