plastic bottle trash

Australians are being encouraged to replace bottled water with tap water in an effort to cut plastics during Keep Australia Beautiful Week.

Every year Australians spend more than $736 million on bottled water, and almost 375 million of bottles end up in landfill and waterways, impacting the environment and marine life.

Yarra Valley Water Managing Director, Pat McCafferty, said that Australia is making great strides when it comes to eliminating plastic in general, but bottled water remains a huge area for improvement.

“Australians have really gotten behind eliminating plastic bags and packaging, but bottled water is still a problem which is ironic as Australia’s tap water is amongst the best in the world,” Mr McCafferty said.

In a recent survey conducted by the Choose Tap Coalition, half of respondents said that their single-use plastic bottled water purchase was motivated by the desire for convenience more than anything else.

At 2000 times the cost of tap water, plastic bottled water is an expensive convenience which is also much pricier than basic expenses like milk and petrol.

Mr McCafferty said that changing Australia’s mindset and making more of a conscious effort to fill a drink bottle before leaving the house would make a big difference.

“If we changed our thinking a little so that leaving the house with a drink bottle is the norm like taking your keys or phone with you, then fewer people would need to purchase bottled water on the run,” Mr McCafferty said.

“It may be tempting to think that buying one extra bottle won’t hurt, but all of us adopting this mindset leads to millions of bottles in landfill.” 

Facts about bottled water that leave a bad taste in the mouth:

  • It takes more than three litres of water to produce one litre of bottled water
  • A plastic water bottle takes around 450 years to break down
  • Australia’s annual use of bottled water generates more than 60,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions
  • By 2025, scientists anticipate there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish
  • One in two marine turtles have eaten plastic
  • Australia alone manufactures almost three million tonnes of plastic every year

Choose Tap is a national coalition started by Yarra Valley Water that promotes tap water as the best hydration choice for the environment, people’s health and their hip pocket.

Before joining the Utility team, Eliza worked as a freelance journalist for a number of years. Eliza has the rare talent of being able to find the nuggets of gold in otherwise average source material, and like any self-respecting member of gen-Y is a whiz when it comes to social media marketing and management.

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