Think Outside the Bottle

Apr. 01, 2013


While many believe bottled water to be a sanitary and fresh means of staying hydrated, the plastic used in disposable bottles has a severe impact on the environment and public health. In fact, the production of bottled water uses 17 million barrels of oil annually, and individually, it takes three times the amount of water to produce a single bottle as it does to fill it.[1] Additionally, while plastic bottles are recyclable, the process is still very energy intensive. From a health standpoint, bottled water is actually not tested for e.coli or other bacteria as often as tap water. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) frequently tests the quality of tap water, whereas bottled water is not regulated. Further, bottled water manufacturing companies are often deceptive in advertising, leading consumers to believe bottled water is sourced from fresh mineral springs when that is not always the case. For instance, Dasani, the brand of water purchased through Aramark is just processed tap water.

TapBrandeis is a campus-wide initiative from the Greening Ivory Tower class to eliminate bottled water on campus. Through the Brandeis Sustainability Fund, TapBrandeis was given $25,000 to install two outdoor hydration stations and four indoor stations. The hydration stations will ideally encourage students to opt for reusable water bottles over disposable. Additionally, TapBrandeis is hoping to use their funds to host engaging events to further inform the Brandeis community of the effects of bottled water and their impact on the environment.