May 26th, 2017

Bottled water industry creating environmental issues

By Letter to the Editor on January 7, 2017.

Re: “Why are we drinking bottled water? Wynne wants debate on future of industry,” (Dec. 21)

“Why are we all drinking water out of bottles when most of us don’t need to?” the premier of Ontario asks. It’s an excellent question.

The answer lies in the multi-million-dollar marketing budgets of the hugely profitable bottling companies who have made a fortune by drawing massive amounts of water from our province’s aquifers (via permits for which they have paid a pittance), then selling it back to us in disposable containers, most of which end up in landfills.

Bottled water requires 2,000 times more energy to produce than tap water. And last year, Canadians disposed of almost 11 billion empty beverage cans and bottles. This is a major environmental issue and an utterly unnecessary one.

We are strong advocates of efforts to protect our drinking water sources and to provide alternatives to prepackaged flat or sparkling water – and we’re proud of the fact that our Canadian operations are on track to eliminate the use of up to 100 million disposable bottles and cans in 2016.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has made a good start with a two-year moratorium on new or expanded water extraction permits, but more must be done, and it will take resolve. The big boys of the bottled water business have been making money hand over fist for many years now, and they don’t take kindly to anyone whom they perceive as a threat – we have the cease-and-desist letters from their lawyers to prove it. Premier Wynne best prepare for battle, but it is a fight that must be fought. The future depends on it.

Rena Nickerson

General manager, Sodastream Canada

Mississauga, Ont.

2 Responses to “Bottled water industry creating environmental issues”

  1. biff says:

    bottled water – plastic and glass – tins…i comes in flavours as well: pop; alcohol; juice and fake juice…. as much as i hate to pay extra for bottled from aquifers, it is the only way to avoid being poisoned by medicated waters, and to avoid poisons that are necessary to make the tap stuff potable. i could be convinced to return to the taps if the only additives were those that make the water potable – i do not need to be force fed medication. perhaps the bigger issue being missed is how we have come to be so accepting of dirty water – we have poisoned it, continue to poison it, and then add poison to it to make it potable. as if our massive pools of freshwater – the great lakes through all the rivers great and smaller – were always toxic. there lies the bigger issue.

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