Despite the mayor's suggestions about bottled water, both bottled and tap water are strictly regulated by federal law. In fact, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration imposes standards for bottled water that are at least as stringent and protective of public health as those set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for public drinking water systems.Most importantly, the environmental impact of bottled water containers, which are 100 percent recyclable, is minimal and improving. In fact, the oil figures cited in the media for making plastic water bottles account for just a fraction of America's oil consumption. Further, bottled water containers contribute only one-third of 1 percent to the municipal waste stream. Still, our industry is constantly working to reduce the material used in our packaging, become more energy efficient and improve recycling rates. These efforts are good for the environment and for business.
On a final note, while the mayor suggests that deposit legislation would improve recycling; this would only single out beverage containers, which account for less than 5 percent of the nation's waste. Sadly, such legislation leaves some of the most easily recycled packaging out of the equation. Further, our state already has a higher recycling rate than many of the states that have deposit legislation in place. Rather, improving curbside recycling systems and educating consumers on the value of recycling all recyclables would be far more effective and efficient.Dennis Farmer, President
Bottled water is regulated by the FDA, which wholly adopts the requirements of the Safe Drinking Water Act and the regulations of the EPA (the federal agency regulating tap water) as a starting point. Then the FDA goes much further. Bottled water has higher standards than tap water for potential contaminants such as lead and bromate, and water bottlers are held to special standards related to containers, water sources and label-ing. To the extent tap water has a somewhat different regulatory scheme, it is simply because they have distribution pipes. Obviously regula-tion is not required for bottled water companies on such matters and their consumers don't have to worry about leaky, aging pipelines or lead connections. You also will never hear of a bottled water company telling their consumers, although the water smells and tastes bad because of dying algae, it is just fine to drink.Mayor Coody is clearly right about beverage containers being too often discarded instead of recycled. All the plastic, glass, aluminum, paper and cardboard used in consumer packaging is useful stuff and we need it back. Mayor Coody and the other mayors will find an enthusiastic part-ner in the bottled water industry in devising and implementing recycling programs if he'll reach out to us instead of using us for a sound bite.
Good to know. Thanks for the info, super helpful. I've found some decent tutorials on…
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