Bottled Beverages

Bottling, particularly in plastic bottles, is terrible for the environment. This morning I witnessed a truck driver of a certain company driving a massive truck, likely post-delivery, and I thought he was smoking a cigarette. I quickly reflected and figured that such a company would want to protect its public image by prohibiting drivers from smoking in their trucks. This may be an untruth but nevertheless, other components of the firm’s (and others) operations should be more heavily weighted in regards to their public accountability.

What are the impacts of extracting water from its source, bottling it (99% of the time in plastic bottles), transporting it across long distances using barrels and barrels of petroleum? I would bet the impacts are huge. Check out the documentary Blue Gold: World Water Wars  for an interesting perspective on some of the problems that such a cycle presents. I find this even more appalling in the United States, where we have one of the most developed water systems and some of the cleanest drinking water in the world. Of course our water pipes do not pump soft drinks, but they pump clean drinking water, and by selling, distributing, and consuming bottled water all stakeholders are indirectly contributing to the downfall of our nation’s water supply (I will extrapolate more on this connection at a later point, but through various integrated environmental links I could easily connect the two).

Water is one thing, flavor or soft drinks another. But they are both in bottles, and they both depend on water, the most important resource on this planet with which most living things that we know of cannot survive (is it all living things?). In case it’s getting lost the overall theme of this post is to encourage limited or abstained use of bottled goods (this includes all bottled goods but for now we focus on beverages).

Where do all the bottles end up? See elsewhere on this site for discussions about plastic items. To reiterate here, nearly all of the plastic that has ever been created is still on this planet because it does not biodegrade. Therefore all those bottles have to end up somewhere, and while today it might not be in your backyard one day it will. The poorer your community the more likely you are to see plastic bottles caught in woods, in roads, along streams, or just out there in the urban wilderness. Personally I hate to see plastic bottles while walking because they are just plain ugly. True, many plastic bottles end up in landfills? But is this good? Industry excavates billions of barrels of petroleum in order to create plastic bottles (and other goods) for the pleasure of consumer satiation. There must be better, healthier methods for the consumer to feel quenched. This is all besides the point that many of these bottled goods can largely be attributed to the obesity epidemic that continues to plague the United States and many other countries. Stop consuming bottled beverages (and other bottled goods, but more on this later).


About Emerging Environments

Thoughts about environmental policy, sustainability, cancer, and more.
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