Most plastic bottles do not get recycled. Even if the bottles are recycled, they are the product of an energy consuming supply chain. Bottling plants consume a lot of energy. In addition, consider the diesel fuel consumed, and the resulting air pollution, from transporting thousands of truckloads of bottled water all over the country every day.
And the cost to the consumer—if a 16 oz. bottle of water costs $1, that’s $8 a gallon, twice as much as gasoline at its summer 2008 peak! What a scam! It is ironic that we pay this price for water in a nation that has the cleanest and most widely available public water systems in the world.
A few statistics:
- 70 million bottles of water are consumed in the U.S. each day.
- Americans threw more than 22 billion water bottles in the trash in 2006.
- Eight out of 10 plastic water bottles become landfill waste.
- Plastic bottles take 700 years before they begin to decompose in a landfill.
- It takes over 1.5 million barrels of oil to manufacture a year’s supply of bottled water. Apply the principle of supply and demand and consider the effect of the demand for a needless 1.5 million barrels of oil on the price of our gasoline!