Environment

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Seattle Becomes Latest City to Ban Bottled Water

March 23, 2008 01:01 AM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Seattle joins a growing list of cities that either discourage or ban the use of city funds to buy bottled water. Is bottled water on its way out?

30-Second Summary

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In an effort to reduce the city’s environmental impact and cut costs, Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels announced Thursday that the city will no longer buy bottled water.

“It’s a pretty clear choice that using city water is a much better choice,” said Mayor Nickels’ spokesman, adding that Seattle has one of the best municipal water supplies in the country.

Over the past few years, the city governments of San Francisco, Los Angeles and Chicago have all placed bans or restrictions on using public money to buy bottled water, and others cities and individuals have begun to weigh the financial and health benefits of bottled water versus regular tap water.

An Associated Press investigation earlier this year raised concerns about the cleanliness of the nation’s tap water supply when it found tiny quantities of an array of pharmaceuticals—including antibiotics, anti-convulsants, mood stabilizers and sex hormones—in the drinking water supplies of at least 24 major cities.

Many others are joining the backlash against bottled water out of concern for both the environment and individual pocketbooks. Fast Company magazine calls the $15 billion a year bottled water industry a sign of our “culture of indulgence.”

And despite the AP’s recent tap water findings, research does not show that bottled water is safer or “more natural” than municipal tap water. In fact, the San Francisco Public Utility Commission notes that FDA standards for bottled water are similar to EPA standards for tap water.

Headline Link: 'City of Seattle Won’t Buy Bottled Water'

Background: San Francisco, Los Angeles and Salt Lake City

Related Topics: Prescription drugs found in drinking water across America

Reference: Making a healthy choice

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