Our Reaction to IBWA’s New Bottled Water Video
Recently, the International Bottled Water Association developed a YouTube video titled “Meet Norman”. Through this video, the IBWA attempts to portray the idea that bottled water bans “shift consumer consumption to less healthy drinks.” Essentially, the IBWA is trying to blame obesity solely on bottled water bans. How ridiculous I must say!
This short, yet myth-filled video describes a man named Norman who lives in a town where the sale of bottled water had been banned. They claim that once bottled water sales were banned, consumers could not find a drinking fountain or forgot their reusable water bottle; therefore, they resorted to purchasing sugary drinks.
As strong advocates for the injunction of the sale of bottled water, the Ban the Bottle team would like to respond to this video, so IBWA- here are the facts:
IBWA: Bottled water bans make people fat.
In order to prove that Norman’s switch from bottled water to sugary drinks caused his weight gain of 28lbs, the IBWA should have conducted a controlled experiment using many participants. Norman would have had to eat the same foods at the same time each day as well as perform the same type and amount of exercise. These, and all other significant variables, would have had to be controlled for this claim to have any chance of being true.
There is no proven correlation between bottled water bans and obesity.
IBWA: The bottled water ban lobbyists “didn’t solve any environmental issues, they added to a public health threat called obesity.”
First, the sale of plastic bottled water was banned due to its negative environmental impact and the costs associated with manufacturing. In addition, consumers are paying a high price for a resource available for free through many other means such as drinking fountains and refilling stations. There are many other ways to access drinking water and people will find them when they want water.
Water is free and no one should have to pay hundreds of dollars per year for something readily available to them.
Contrary to IBWA’s claim, Angel Nadal, a BPA expert at the Miguel Hernandez University in Spain, conducted a recent study that showed the chemical Bisphenol A, or BPA, found in plastic water bottles “triggers the release of almost double the insulin actually needed to breakdown food.” This is like telling the organs in your body that you are consuming more that you actually are. This study strengthens the link between BPA and obesity which can cause many diseases such as diabetes.
IBWA: Bottled water is healthy, safe, and convenient.
In 2009, it was statistically shown that 48.7% of all bottled water is derived from tap water, and that number has grown since. Essentially, half of bottled water that consumers buy is simply tap water. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather not pay 500 times the cost of tap water just to get it in a plastic bottle that is harmful to my health.
Many organizations have studied the effects of harmful chemicals on humans,and have often found chemicals in single-use plastic water bottles such as Biosphenol A or BPA. The negative effects of these chemicals are huge ranging anywhere from tooth decay to disrupting fetal development. “Bisphenol A (BPA) is an environmental estrogen that can affect development and health by disrupting normal hormonal signaling.” This harmful chemical then leeches into the water within the bottle, ultimately consumed by the general public. So, IBWA, bottled water is healthy? I think not.
Additionally, the IBWA claims bottled water is the “safe” choice. But tap water goes through testing for E. coli and is required to provide its source and quality reports, yet bottled water is NOT required to undergo any of those regulations before distributed to consumers.
IBWA: Bottled water packaging makes up only a small sliver of all the plastic produced.
This may be true, but the percentage of plastic water bottles that end up in our landfills are not justifiable. Nearly 8 out of 10 bottles end up in landfills. Millions find themselves as litter on our roads, beaches, streams, and other waterways. In the U.S. alone, 877 bottles are trashed every second!
The consumption of bottled water in the U.S. in 2007 required an energy input between 32 and 54 million barrels of oil.