Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Farewell to Bottled Water


While Gadabout was vacationing in Michigan last week he listened to a news report on the radio concerning a 25 cent excise tax on bottled water. At first I gaffed it off as a State deep in recession looking for ways to generate additional revenues on the backs of already strapped citizens. Soon after my return, I read a story in the NY Times that addressed this issue and the popularity of the idea of taxing bottled water across the nation. This got me thinking—maybe there is a good point to all of this. Bottled water is, after all, a rip off. We all know this, and most of us usually feel a little silly paying a dollar for a 16 ounce bottle at the local 7-11 to quench our thirst.

Even if we buy bottled water in bulk, we still spend about 30 cents per 16 ounce bottle. That is $2.40 per gallon, which is just slightly less than a gallon of gas! At full retail it adds up to $8.00 per gallon. Buy high end products from a Starbucks (Ethos?) and I am certain you’ll hit the $10 mark. Americans are stupid. We bitch about the cost of gas, yet we fill our tummies with $10 water—water that is virtually free from our taps!

Let’s face it, most of America enjoys fantastic hydro-infrastructure systems and the quality is top notch. We paid a lot of cash over the past century setting up and maintaining this infrastructure and now we only use it to take showers and water the lawn!

Bottled water produces a lot of waste. It takes energy produce all those bottles. It takes gasoline to deliver the bottles to retail outlets. It takes effort, manpower and energy to dispose of the bottles. I don’t care if you “recycle” or not, it still requires processing! And lastly, those nasty bottles that do not make it to a landfill end up floating in our lakes, seas, rivers and oceans. Wasteful!

Two weeks ago, Gadabout broke out an ancient water bottle that was resting peacefully at the back of a kitchen cabinet and started putting it to good use. As a matter of fact I used it this morning when I hit the tennis courts, which offered a nearly free and ice filled refreshment. I was proud of myself for not be a wasteful sort and knew that I helped save the world.

Let’s work together on this very strange human addiction to bottled water and see if we can save the world one bottle at a time. Pass the word, and pass the word of Gadabout Jack.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Gadabout,

Aye, spending dollars on an item that you can get for free is wasteful. However, I applaud the American spirit and ingenious marketing that makes us believe bottled water is better than anything coming from a tap (usually obtained from similar sources as bottled water). American entrepreneurship has created yet another billion dollar industry. We are all missing the flouride but hey, there are dental sealants covered by insurance. As for the bottles, I don't think bottled water is to blame for inconsiderate litterbugs. Everything came from the ground at one time or another. I don't advocate wasteful behavior, but I also do not follow the environmentalist insanity. A few thousand years after the last human dies earth will have turned everything in our landfills into dirt. Litter is bad, but don't go to GQ over it.

Gadabout Jack said...

No environmental insanity here, but I see the excise tax coming to a theater near you very soon!
GJ

Anonymous said...

as always, gadabout leading the way!

Anonymous said...

we reuse our water bottles -- using our own free well water on tap to refill -- at least 3-4 times or until they die squashed in the car or garage from sports cleats, books, mowers, etc.... Do we get extra points for that?! (It's gotta bring our cost down to about $.10 a gallon!)

Gadabout Jack said...

Dear 10 cents per gallon,
You receive a Gadabout Gold Star Award for your efforts!
GJ

Jimmy ray said...

I want gold star awad also.... Kay and I re use our bottles untill they make us sick......

Gadabout Jack said...

Jimmy Ray,
You have earned a Gadabout Gold Star also! Good work!
GJ

Anonymous said...

Hadn't even thought about it Gadabout. Back to the tap for me!