The Hazards of Bottled Water and What You Can Do

If you're a regular reader here, you know that we are not fans of bottled water. This infographic sums up several the major issues with bottled water, and we've got some tips to help you kick the bottle!

If you’re a regular reader here, you know that we are not fans of bottled water. This infographic sums up several the major issues with bottled water, and we’ve got some tips to help you kick the bottle!

You can click the image to view it larger.

hazards of bottled water
Infographic Courtesy of Visually

It might seem difficult to ditch the bottled water habit, but with a little planning, it’s easy as pie! If you keep your eyes peeled, there are lots of public sources for drinking water. There is even an app that can help you find drinking fountains. Heck, if you’re super thirsty, you can always fill up at the bathroom sink. The key is to keep a bottle on you when you head out, so you won’t have to buy a disposable plastic one when you’re on the go.

Do any of you guys have a favorite water bottle for stashing in your purse or backpack? I’d love to hear ideas in the comments!


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  1. The article above seriously undermines this web site’s credibility as, unfortunately, all 7 of the points made about bottled water in South Africa are incorrect – or flippant.

    From the top, anti-clockwise the facts are:
    • Globally, some 15 million tons of PET resin are made every year but approximately 150 000 tons of this (1%) is used in South Africa. Of that 1%, only 6 000 tons are used for bottled water courtesy of light-weighting of bottles.
    • In 2010, the value of the bottled water industry in South Africa was R3.5 billion. The bottled water industry constitutes only 1.4% of all beverages.
    • Less than 15% of bottled water in South Africa starts as tap water; over 80% is from renewable underground sources and sources that would otherwise go untapped such as underground springs. The total volume of water used by the South African bottled water industry could alternatively be used to irrigate one and a half golf courses, a 45 hectare fruit farm or 32 hectares of lucerne. The industry also directly employs 1800 persons.
    • Legislation and standards for bottled water in South Africa are far stricter than those for municipal water. (
    • 38% of PET bottles in South Africa are recycled; the target for 2022 is 70% thanks to PETCO and industry efforts. Importantly, of the bottles currently not recycled, only 1.4% are bottled water bottles – the remaining 98.6% are from other beverages.
    • Bottled water has a lower carbon footprint than most other beverages including tea, coffee and milk (
    • In South Africa, it takes only 1.7 litres of water to produce 1 litre of bottled water. By contrast, 1kg of beef takes 16 000 litres of water, 1kg of maize – 900 litres, 1 cup of coffee – 140 litres. Bottled water does not compete with tap water, it is offered as a healthy beverage alternative.
    • You’d rather make vuvuzelas than plastic beverage bottles? Manufacturers of plastic bottles put a great deal of effort into encouraging recycling of their products; we don’t know of anyone encouraging the recycling of unwanted vuvuselas.

    For the facts, your readers should visit and

    • Wait…is that, “We’re not a lobbying organization, we just take money from an industry and try to shift public policy and sentiment to benefit that industry” kind of statement?

      Seriously? 🙂

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