There’s nary a bottled water bottle (BWB) to be seen on the streets of Manhattan today. That’s great news for environmentalists everywhere. This blogger just came back from a two-mile walk. The temperature was 89 degrees, according to the New York Magazine Building clock on Madison Ave.
Thousands of people were passed and observed. Okay, it’s hardly a scientific survey, but only five BWBs (three Poland Springs, one Aquafina and one Evian) were seen in the hands of people strolling on Madison and Fifth Aves. That’s a sharp contrast to the scene a decade ago, when every 20-something or so was clutching a BWB as if their lives depended on constant hydration.
The disappearance of BWBs is a sweet win for “tappening” proponents, supporters of filling plastic bottles with tap water. It is a smashing victory for environmentalists who are aghast by the amount of energy, waste and expense connected with plastic production, transportation and disposal costs of BWBs.
Isn't there a tad bit of guilt connected with quaffing Fiji Water? There certainly should be.
Wal-Mart (wouldn't you have guessed it?) is among savvy corporations to cash in on the backlash to BWBs. It ran a radio ad over the weekend imagining the “green benefits” achieved if every one of its gazillion customers bought a water pitcher and filled it from the tap. The Bentonville, Ark.-based giant has a “Save & Live Green” section of its website that is loaded with money-saving green shopping advice.
The backlash against BWB closes the PR loop. The BWB business scored one of the greatest con jobs of all times, persuading Americans to pay for something that flowed free from the faucet. BWBs are okay if one’s stomach turns with the thought of drinking recycled water from the Mississippi River, but New Yorkers should have known better. New York City faucets are blessed with pure liquid gold straight from the Catskills.
The environmental impact and cost of BWB is now known. Let’s keep them off the streets of the Big Apple.
We can always take a measure of solace for being duped, blaming the French for snookering us about BWB. It was Perrier that got New Yorkers hooked on BWBs during the '70s and '80s.