Wednesday, July 11, 2007

You’ll Get My Bottled Water When You Pry It From My Dehydrated, Dead Hands

I am a quasi-environmentalist. I’m not a global warming doubter or flagrant polluter. On the other hand, I haven’t been terribly vocal about environmental issues apart from our dependence on expensive, exhaustible, polluting fuels derived from countries that want to see us all dead.

Gas-guzzling SUVs are not a basic need; they are most often bought as a status symbol, not to transport families to soccer games. (People buy minivans for that purpose.) As long as petroleum companies own our government, though, we won’t see clean alternative fuels used to any great extent very soon.

There are some habit changes that are out of the question as far as I’m concerned, even though they may help the environment, because they touch on basic needs. One is the use of air conditioning. People die from excessive heat in the South the way people die from extreme cold in the North during winter. (A prejudice exists that heat is a necessity, while air conditioning is luxury. This simply isn’t true.) It isn't possible to function normally around here (Florida) much of the time without that artificially cooled air.

Another habit change that's off the table is buying bottled water.

Cities like Salt Lake City and San Francisco are banning bottled water use by city employees because of all the plastic that’s ending up in landfills. It’s just a matter of time before they extend the band to their respective citizens.

Bottled water has been maligned for other reasons before now. It’s trendy. It’s not really cleaner than tap water. Why would you buy water when it comes out of the tap “for free?”

I’ll address these: Tap water in many places tastes like shit, or chemicals or the tap itself. You actually can drink bottled water down without holding your nose. When it comes to things you ingest, taste goes a long way to determining your choices, my friends. (And if it isn’t cleaner than tap water, they sure as hell do a good job of making it seem cleaner.)

Tap water is, of course, not free. You pay a monthly water bill, if you're like most people. And trendiness, well, that's an unfortunate result of putting out a really great product.

The convenience of bottled water – grab a bottle and hit the road – is also appealing, but certainly not essential.

In Florida, we're actually encouraged to stock up on bottled water for a large portion of the year. We have these hurricanes, tornadoes and other natural disasters, you see. Water mains break and taps go out. Electricity goes out, and you can’t trust that tap water is safe to drink, nor can you boil it before consuming it. In these situations, bottled water becomes the single most important commodity – more so than food or fuel. (Need I bring up the fact some people died from dehydration after Hurricane Katrina in a city that was more or less under water?)

So, when another quake hits San Francisco (sorry, Bird) and breaks water pipes, I wonder if residents will be licking moisture from under rocks like a toad and cursing their environmentally sound ways? I hope it doesn't come to that. But between quakes and fires and mudslides, California has its share of natural disasters. Something to think about.

Concerned about bottled water’s impact on the environment? Develop biodegradable containers, ones that dissolve after a certain period of disuse. While the container may be problematic, the liquid held within is an absolute necessity.

If bottled water is banned I will stockpile it. And when Gonzo sends the ATF, er, EPA to my compound to take me away, they’ll get what they have coming to them: Water balloons filled with the good stuff! Take that, coppaz!!!

When I think of bottled water, I think about what a man once said: "Can’t touch this!"

18 comments:

she said...

no kidding florida water is way chlorinated or something. maybe they could start selling water in animal skins or something...refillable canteens?

bogs i am going to stockpile the old incandescent light bulbs. these swirlly light bulbs are full of mercury and present more of a hazard once they burn out than a landfill of water bottles:

Highly efficient fluorescent light bulbs are widely touted as environmentally friendly, but they have created a recycling headache for the Environmental Protection Agency and local governments.

More often than not, their toxic ingredients simply end up in landfills, where the chemicals can leach into soil and water and poison fish and other wildlife.

The bulbs contain mercury and should not be tossed in the trash as are regular light bulbs.

"They're very efficient, but once they're used up, they become a ticking toxic time bomb," said Leonard Robinson, chief deputy director of the California Department of Toxic Substances Control. "They need to be captured and recycled."


yeah. this is the kind of crap we can do to "save the planet"!

you know, im environmentally concious. i take good care of my land, the animals....all organic garden, turn off the lights when i leave the room...all the obvious stuff. but these bandwagons (like the CFL's) get to rolling down the hill way fast before anybody really looks at the problem on the back end!

just so long as they "feel better" about themselves.

"im working to save the planet. what are you doing?"

LeftLeaningLady said...

Florida water is disgusting! I can not believe people actually drink it.

Here in the NW, conservative, Republican section of the state, there is not a lot of belief in recycling and I recently realized how much water my family was using. So, while I do have 3 cases in the garage in case of hurricanes, I switched to a refillable filtered water pitcher. It actually is saving us money, and even if the filter is not good for the environment, it is a lot smaller to toss it once a month than a case of water once a week.

Mara said...

Hi there.

Sydney, Australia water is white with chlorine sometimes.

It actualy looks like fog.

Nevada water is the best I have ever tasted at the Hoover dam.
However, two ladies from Michigin (sp?) said Nevada water was bitter.

Pete Bogs said...

all - indeed, even if they worked out the taste issue here, it wouldn't help us in an emergency... this ban actually seems irresponsible from my view...

I remember Long Island water was good... that's the only place I ever liked it from the tap... of course, it's also cold from the tap... not here! I am going to Boston in a couple of weeks... will have to see how their water fares...

thanks for reading!

Bird said...

If there's an earthquake out here today, Bogs, it's on your head.

The City's (as in San Francisco - I can't speak to Salt Lake City's situation)desire to ban bottled water is based more on financial concerns than environmental. And it is a sound decision - no one's gonna suffer - no one's gonna suffer dehydration or desalination - no one's inalienable rights will be trampled.

SF spends close to $500,000 a year on those large dispensers of bottled water and dixie cups - when SF tap water (which comes from the pristine Hetch Hetchy resevoir in Yosemite) is just as good as the bottled stuff.

But I wish those small bottled waters, the 6-24 oz bottles, the ones everyone carries around on a daily basis and buys in huge flats at Costco, were banned - and that for environmental reasons. The number of plastic bottles that litter the streets or end up in the landfill because people are too careless to recycle is ridiculous. Why, the number of those empties could rival Carl Sagan's MILLIONS AND BILLIONS of stars in the universe!

I typically do not use those personal-sized bottled waters. (Yes, on occassion - of course I do - remember - I said TYPICALLY). I fill up my exercise bottle with water and carry that about. It has the virture of being REUSABLE - as in reduce, REUSE, and recycle) and it's cheaper.

flap/flap/flap

Bird said...

oh - about emergencies - geesh bogs - so everyone has a stash of bottled water for that - but you don't need to use bottled water on an every day basis. just sayin'.

besides - just drink beer!

Pete Bogs said...

bird - bottled water is considered survival item #1 here... and after the weeks without power some people experienced after four consecutive hurricanes in '04 or '05 (they blur together for me), no one's going to change that here...

you are indeed lucky to live in a place where water is actually drinkable directly from the tap...

Mara said...

I buy a bottle every now and then as there is a distinct "taste" to bottled water. It does taste different.

Then I fill it up with tap water (to measure what I drink) and watch the clear turn to fog.

Try water and lemon juice. Burns the chemicals away, as well as any fat. (inside you)

Pete Bogs said...

mara - bottled water indeed has its own taste, but it's far more palatable to me... lemon-flavored water is good...

she said...

bogs don't need to burn no fat

Pete Bogs said...

she - maybe just a little inside my head? I think Mara's reacting to my baby fat from the other post...

the bottled water will come in handy when the EPA storms my compound, causing a fire to start... it will only be used to put out the fire... Guinness will be my sole sustenance during the "siege"

she said...

problem bogshond!

she said...

thats sposed to say "problem solved!!"

Pete Bogs said...

she - no dice... I'm not leaving the compound... you'll never take me and my stash alive...

Mara said...

No not reacting to that.. (baby fat) ...

Lemon juice cleanses your liver

I drink or try 2 drink 2 x lemon plus water mixed with pure Canadian Maple Syrup with Chilli every day.

Since I have been doing that, my skin is soft. I had a infected tooth that disapeared in 3 days and my fingernails and toenails are white.

It's amazing.

she said...

i've heard of that! the lemon chili and maple thing! i thought it was a 3 day fast thing i didnt know it was for your liver.
i should try it but i gotta eat grrherhaha

Mara said...

Remember Dreamgirls the movie.

Well Beyonce had to loose weight ... sooo she went on this diet ... The Lemonade Diet.

This is what she drank for 10 days straight (what I put up before) but about 10 glasses per day.

Apparently she lost 20lbs in 10 days.

She says once she got over the initial hunger pangs she had never felt better.

If I lost 20lbs I would disappear altogether. But I thought it sounded good as a cleansing thingo.

I did try it for 1/2 a day. But like you was about to faint by lunch.

It is actually a nice drink.

Pete Bogs said...

so sweet, sour and spicy all mixed together will help you lose weight? hmm... something to remember if I bulk up again...