The Awful Truth About Bottled Water
"Tapped: The Movie," by Stephanie Soechtig, is a film that examines the role of the bottled water industry and its effects on health, climate change, pollution, and reliance on oil.
The film begins with the shocking statement: "By 2030, two-thirds of the world will be lacking access to clean drinking water." Several factors play a role in whether or not this frightful estimation will become a reality—one of which is the corporate control of drinking water.
Should Water be Allowed to be Managed as a Profit-Driven Commodity?
Beyond the issues of your health and the environment, which I'll discuss in a moment, bottled water represents a novel form of privatization, in which private corporations have succeeded at making water a commodity.
The film compares the cost of drinking water to gasoline, stating that as the cost of water has surpassed the cost of gas, it's becoming evident that drinking water is the next Empire... Already, the World Bank has estimated the value of the world water market at $800 billion per year.
In communities around the United States, people are now gathering together to protect their local water supplies from being sold by private corporations.
Changes in global climate have caused water supplies to dwindle in certain areas, and the film includes a segment highlighting the irony many of these communities now face. For example, in 2007, Raleigh, North Carolina faced a terrible drought. Yet the Pepsi plant continued their water bottling plant operations even at the height of the drought. Pepsi Company used an estimated 400,000 gallons of municipal water a day, which they bottled and sold back to the community right as it was running out of water... It would seem obvious that water supplies should be reserved for the local communities, but as stated in the film, when private corporations control the water supply, you end up with "a collision in moral values."
I highly recommend setting aside some time to view this important film, to learn more about the water industry, and how it affects you.
I would say, and I suspect you would agree, that water is more a "right" than it is a commodity. And that private corporations should have no more control over the selling of water than they do the selling of our air supplies. Unfortunately, even public water supplies are being increasingly taken over by private corporations, and in some areas of the world are up for grabs by the highest bidder.
Is there anything you can do about it?
Sure. You can get involved on a local level, but even beyond that, we, as consumers, can simply refuse to buy into the "water as a commodity scheme," by not buying bottled water. And there are plenty of reasons for ditching this habit.