The Story of Bottled Water

The Story of Bottled Water

A couple of years ago we featured the Story of Stuff video. It moved us all so much that we added eco-hacks to the list of pretty important stuff the 2 Fat Dads site would talk about. I guess you call it being a responsible geek, or a green Dad, or simply having a bit of common sense. I’ve personally been carrying Nalgene and Bilt bottles that I fill from home or the cold filtered tap water cooler we have at work, but after watching this latest “Story of Stuff” video with my daughter, she asked me to make sure I tell the Interwebs folks about it too. So of course I’m going to post this link to the video, but I also wanted to tell you about a few other cool things you can do to never have to use bottled water again.

In most cities, the tap water is excellent and you really don’t need to do anything else but chill it a bit and then fill up your favourite re-usable bottle, I’ve become a fan of the Bilt stainless steel bottles recently, but I’ve also used Nalgene hard plastic bottles for many many years as they are practically indestructible, surviving repetitive drops and even a few higher than usual altitude drops near cliff faces and life guard chairs.

But what if you really are worried about the water in your town, well apart from lobbying town hall to get it cleaned up, you can install a cold water filter tap right into your kitchen sink for less than a few months supply of the bottled stuff. You ca also mention this to your boss and tell them that installing a filtered tap water cold water cooler. These look just like you regular cooler except there is no bottle, it’s connected straight into the water mains form the city and no one ever needs to get a hernia again. There are even quite a few charities that will help you convert from bottled water to high quality filtered tap water. When I worked in England, we called upon one of the charities to not only put some pressure on our landlord to sort out the plumbing but also lobby the town council to clean up drinking water and make it more accessible to the companies in the area. You wouldn’t think that would be a real issue in a country like England, but in fact the privatization of the local water boards have some how turned the rural parts of the UK into third world countries.

In Montreal and most of Canada, we are very lucky to have so many fresh water lakes and a very good water system so we should really be taking advantage of it, other than filling our pools and sprinkling the lawn. And if you’re felling a little generous and really want to difference have a look at a project by ForkBombr‘s Stephen Hackett’s brother. The brothers have put together a site called Operation Broken Silence. I’m told Stephen is just the techie and that his Bro is the real brains behind. Worth a good look and no I don’t know if his brother’s name is Buddy.
[UPDATE] Above section was updated after the original posting.

However if after all this all you do is remember this video the next time you’re about to pick that case of bottled water at the grocery story then that is a good start.


  1. Nice article. Lets hope there is one video for 'true' composting. I think that every household can make a big impact (forget Earth Hour) by doing a few simple households changes (and cities can help increase that impact too):

    – Better recycling that can accept and truly recycle more products;
    – Water tap add-ons or other reusable water filtration system;
    – Composting (for all foods – city involvement required);
    – Rain water collection barrels (possible credits from cities?);
    – Turn off unnecessary lights.

    I'm about to get the barrel myself, then I'll be well on my way to reducing my carbon footprint. Now if my son could get out of diapers so I could reducing my garbage output to 1 bag every 2-3 weeks.

    Well done!

  2. It's not just a recycling system that can recycle more products, it's also about a retail system that uses recyclable packaging! Everything is recyclable but some times it's more expensive to break something down that it is to form it. Like styrofoam, supper cheap & easy to make; but worse than nuclear waste when you try to break it down again.

    I like the rain water collection barrel idea, but I want to hook them up to the garden hose.

  3. You both need to go back to the 2007 video Story of Stuff and see why recycling alone will not save this little blue planet of ours. We need to seriously start reducing our requirement and start demanding goods that don't have a manufactured expiration or obsolescence.