Press Releases



Washington, DC: The World Water Center recently announced that it would NOT support organizations in the United States who use bottled water in plastic as a means to fund-raise or to promote their water projects.

"Using bottled water to promote a water project is analogous to a cancer clinic selling or giving away cigarettes as a means to promote an anti-smoking campaign," says Marilynn Mendell, President of the World Water Center. Mendell contends that the tap water in the United States is by far some of the purest and safest water in the world.

Water bottling conglomerates claiming bottled water safer and cleaner than US tap water-a marketing campaign reminiscent of the "infant formula is safer and better than breast milk" scam-hope to (and may be) change how we consume water.

The profit margins for bottled water exponentially overshadow any other non-alcoholic bottled beverage. The ingredients inside the bottles may be safe (key word "may") as there are no real guidelines stated on the bottles, but the real culprit is the plastic containing the water. For people who want to be environmentally friendly, using plastic water bottles becomes an oxymoron, and studies have shown that reuse of water bottles may be hazardous to their health. Some countries people encourage to "sterilize" water on rooftops. While water might become germ free under such conditions, leaving dirty water inside an old plastic bottle in the sun with high temperatures will further break down the plastic causing a different kind health risk.

Well-maintained drinking fountains remain the best sustainable answer to our nation's quest to be healthy. Years ago paper cups in penny dispensers distributed on trains, in parks and theaters were widely available to the public, while today it is almost impossible to access a paper cup of water at public venues. The private citizen, removed from the task of recycling, (no rewards for returns and few opportunities to recycle at public venues) gets a false sense of environmental contribution when they can point to municipalities and waste management companies as the responsible parties.

By taking a stand against bottled water in plastic, and as a means to fund-raise by organizations promoting sustainable water practices, the World Water Center hopes to lead a national charge against bottled water in plastic.

Marilynn Deane Mendell
work: 540.368.1876


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