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Bottled Water

Do you know how much bottled water Americans consume annually? Do you know how much money is wasted on bottled water? Do you know how many plastic water bottles get thrown in the trash every day? The sheer numbers are staggering:

  • Roughly 50 billion plastic water bottles end up in U.S. landfills each year — 140 million every day! That’s enough, laid end to end, to reach China and back each day.
  • In 2008, Americans drank an average 215 bottles of water each for a total of 66 billion bottles. Of that total, only 22% was recycled.
  • We are shipping 1 billion water bottles a week around the U.S. in ships, trains, and trucks.
  • We are paying 2 to 4 times the cost of gasoline for a product that is virtually free.

The problem with plastics:

  • It takes over 700 years for plastic to decompose.
  • Plastic pollution is a world-wide problem. There is a growing "garbage patch" of plastic estimated to be more than twice the size of Texas floating in the North Pacific Ocean.
  • Ecosystems and wildlife are negatively impacted by plastic debris.
  • Disposable plastic water bottles are made out of oil which is a finite natural resource. Plastic bottles require energy to make and transport. Currently, the amount of oil we use to produce water bottles each year (17 million barrels) could fuel over 1,000,000 cars for an entire year.

The environmental impact of one disposable bottle:

  • Picture a disposable water bottle ¼ full of petroleum. That is how much petroleum it takes to make and distribute a single plastic bottle of water.
  • It takes THREE bottles of water to make and distribute ONE disposable plastic bottle of water.
  • 120 grams of greenhouse gases are generated by a single disposable plastic bottle of water.

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